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    GLIDE Ensemble and Sarah Bush Dance Perform at ‘A Night to Empower the Legacies of Del Martin & Phyllis Lyon’

    Women’s History Month wrapped up with “A Night to Empower the Legacies of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon” as part of the Divas & Drinks @ The Academy event series co-produced by the San Francisco Bay Times and The Academy SF. It included a first look at the documentary-in-progress The Day the Curtains Came Down about the last years of lesbian trailblazer Phyllis Lyon and her queer caregiving team. Many of the caregivers attended the event, which was held on March 29, 2024, at The Academy SF.

    Filmmaker and Emmy winner Deborah Svoboda was in the house, along with Producer Susan Berston. Kate Kendell of The California Endowment and former Executive Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights hosted with emcee Donna Sachet. Activist Mandy Carter, who worked closely with Del and Phyllis and is an inductee of the International Federation of Black Prides’ Black LGBT Hall of Fame, traveled across the country for this event.

    The mighty GLIDE Ensemble, with Minister Marvin K. White joining in, performed “Love Train” and “Unspeakable Joy.” Lyon and Martin worked with GLIDE and were life-long supporters of the organization.

    GLIDE Ensemble performs “Love Train”
    GLIDE Ensemble performs “Unspeakable Joy”

    Sarah Bush, the acclaimed Artistic Director of the Sarah Bush Dance Project, and Frances Sedayao performed a beautiful one-night-only dance to Del and Phyllis’ all-time favorite song, “Tenderly” by Rosemary Clooney.

    Sarah Bush and Frances Sedayao of the Sarah Bush Dance Project perform “Tenderly”

    Denise Heitzenroder spoke on behalf of the SF Commission on the Status of Women and shared information about the upcoming “Shift Happens” Women’s Policy Summit. Andrew Shaffer of the GLBT Historical Society Museum & Archives also spoke, mentioning the museum’s extensive collection of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon artifacts.

    DJ Rockaway presented by Olivia Travel led the After Party, with several members of the Dykes on Bikes attending along with numerous other LGBTQ community leaders.

    Thanks to Juan Davila of the San Francisco Bay Times who helped with the fundraising for the documentary, which earned several thousand dollars. Thanks also to the many businesses and individuals who donated items for the live auction and raffle—including the San Francisco Giants (Del and Phyllis were major Giants fans!—and to the presenting sponsor Comcast, as well as to additional sponsors Bacardí, Extreme Pizza, the San Francisco Federal Credit Union, and again to Olivia and The Academy SF.

    We encourage you to make a donation to help complete The Day the Curtains Came Down, a documentary that will—like the March 29 event—help strengthen the legacies of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, two of the all time great OG lesbians!