Theatre is an important part of our wonderful oasis. Productions range from the full-scale touring Broadway show at the McCallum Theatre to youth theatre productions at our local high schools.
So it’s no wonder that the sheer number of nominees and categories for the Desert Theatre League’s 2023 “Desert Star Awards” is longer than the scripts they are honoring.
And since it’s hot as hell and we’re now in August, what better time to shine the proverbial spotlight on theatre? Our # 1 thing to do this weekend is to shop for tickets for your favorite performances. Yep, stay inside with the A/C cranked and max out the credit card supporting local theatre!
Me? I’m off for a well-deserved break including this weekend’s Amsterdam Pride celebration. The forecast is for showers and temps in upper 60s – heaven! But I’ll be doing my ticket buying from the road. See you at the theatre!
Brad Fuhr, your Gay Desert Guide on KGAY 106.5 Palm Springs
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Planning for Fall Performances
While we are still in the dog days of summer here in the desert, it’s a great time to plan ahead: local theatre companies and performance venues are gearing up for a spectacular season to come! The Purple Room opens Labor Day Weekend with Debby Boone and continues with a stacked schedule of performers all month. Dezart Performs kicks off their season with The Thanksgiving Play on November 3, Desert Theatreworks opens with Lend Me a Tenor starting Oct. 6, Desert Ensemble Theatre Company presents Singing with the Desert Stars on Oct. 6 and their first production of the season is Collective Rage, opening Nov. 10. CV Rep presents The Fantasticks (re-imagined and re-gendered), opening November 1, and the McCallum Theatre‘s 2023-2024 season is on sale now as well, with events starting in October and November, and more being added all the time. Check out the Gay Desert Guide Events Channel for the full season of performances, plus information on season tickets and packages. Get planning!
Craft Beer Weekend
The Ace Hotel & Swim Club’s annual Craft Beer Fest takes place Saturday, August 5 from 1 pm–11 pm. This frothy festival celebrates the micro-brewers, hop heads, cask masters and maltsters who make the world a better place for beer lovers everywhere. Guests can also purchase pourings from the participating breweries, while supplies last, all weekend in The Amigo Room. Alf Alpha & Super Sonido Sistema perform hip hop and electronic dance music from 12–5 pm @ The Commune. More info
Beneath the Desert Sky: Barrett Martin
The Joshua Tree National Park Association presents Barrett Martin’s One Man Show on Saturday, August 5 from 7:30–9 pm at Indian Cove in Joshua Tree National Park. The show features an enthralling combination of storytelling, film, and live musical performances by the Grammy-winning producer, author, and esteemed drummer of Screaming Trees, Mad Season, and Tuatara. Barrett also holds a master’s degree in ethnomusicology and linguistics and has studied and practiced Zen for over 25 years. This extraordinary event promises to take you on a captivating journey around the world of music. Get tickets
Long Beach Pride
Long Beach Pride takes place Friday–Sunday, August 4–6 at Marina Green. The three-day event features the famous Long Beach Pride™ parade, live music by headline artists Mya, Laura Leon, Edith Márquez, La Diva Lucia Mendez, and Symon and many more favorites, with a Fiesta Caliente Stage, Urban Soul Stage, Country Stage and Dance Stage, plus food and drink, 150+ arts/crafts vendors, DJ’s and dancing, drag shows, parade, games, giveaways and more. The parade goes down E. Ocean Blvd from 10:30 am to 1 pm on Sunday, August 6. More info
Broadway to the BIG SCREEN – Little Shop of Horrors
Every Saturday this summer, the Palm Springs Cultural Center presents the great musicals that made it from Broadway to the BIG SCREEN (and sometimes back again). On Saturday, August 5 at 4 pm, the featured film is Little Shop of Horrors. When a hungry space alien meets a nerdy florist, the result is a tale filled with home grown horror, side eye humor and some great B Movie music. The action happens in skid-row, where meek flower shop assistant Seymour (Rick Moranis) pines for co-worker Audrey (Ellen Greene). During a total eclipse, he discovers an unusual plant he names Audrey II, which attracts the attention of everyone including Audrey! The growing plant also attracts a great deal of business to the previously struggling flower shop, but it’s growing appetite for human flesh and blood threatens everyone’s idea of a happy ending! MeTV 103.1 fm is a proud media sponsor of the Broadway to the BIG SCREEN Film Series! Get tickets
Sing Along With Us – Singin’ in the Rain
The Palm Springs Cultural Center presents classic movie musicals in the Sing Along With Us Film Series all summer long, on the largest screen in the valley at the Historic Camelot Theatre. The Palm Springs Gay Men’s Chorus will lead the singing. On Sunday, August 6 at 3 pm, come sing along to Singin’ in the Rain. In this beloved musical, a silent film star falls for a chorus girl just as he and his delusionally jealous screen partner are trying to make the difficult transition to talking pictures in 1920s Hollywood. Gay Desert Guide and KGAY 106.5 Palm Springs are proud media sponsors of the Sing Along With Us This Summer Film Series! Get tickets
Modernism Week October Tickets on Sale Now
Tickets are on sale now for Modernism Week – October, the Fall Edition of Modernism Week, the annual festival that highlights midcentury modern architecture, art, interior and landscape design. This mini-Modernism Week event runs October 19–22, offering nearly 50 events over four days, including many free and low-cost programs. In addition to beloved returning favorites, there are many new events slated for the October festival, including: “Legendary Palm Springs Commercial Architecture Bus Tour,” “Desert Glamour: The Crockett Residence Tour,” “Celebrate the Restoration of the Iconic Plaza Theatre,” and more! Get tickets
Vote for Mitch! – Favorite Chef
Palm Springs’ own Mitchell Battersby made it to the quarterfinals in the prestigious Favorite Chef competition, presented by celebrity chef Carla Hall. In this tournament-style competition, competitors go through rounds, and those with the most votes in those rounds move on. To win Favorite Chef, one must leverage the power of social media and word-of-mouth advertising to garner the support of the public to vote. From a humble group of over 100 talented chefs, Mitch has challenged himself to prove time and again that his culinary skills are unrivaled. As he continues to work toward the finals, you can help Mitch win by voting daily, and if he wins the competition, he’s donating $5,000 to Palm Springs Pride to help keep Pride free for everyone. Vote today
Fellini Retrospective: Satyricon
Thanks to popular demand, the Palm Springs Cultural Center presents its Fellini Retrospective series through the end of 2023, continuing on the first Friday of every month. The series is part of the Fellini 100 Tour, an international celebration of Fellini’s centennial. Experience why Fellini’s name is synonymous with the international art of cinema! On Friday, August 4 at 7 pm, the featured film will be Satyricon (1969). After his young lover, Gitone (Max Born), leaves him for another man, Encolpio (Martin Potter) decides to kill himself, but a sudden earthquake destroys his home before he has a chance to do so. Now wandering around Rome in the time of Nero, Encolpio encounters one bizarre and surreal scene after another. He’s invited to a poetry reading that ends in violence; is taken hostage by pirates; and is even forced to battle a gladiator disguised as a minotaur in a giant labyrinth. Get tickets
Lazy Bear Week
Lazy Bear Fund, Inc. presents their annual signature event, Lazy Bear Week, from Monday, July 31–Monday, August 7 in Guerneville, the heart of Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley. This is one of the largest and most successful bear gatherings in the world, going for over 25 years. Attendees enjoy pool parties, dance parties, campfires, live entertainment and amazing DJs. Most Lazy Bear Week revelers stay in local lodges, campgrounds and cabins, or avail themselves of any number of options in nearby towns and cities. More info P.S. Don’t forget to stop by and support Equality Vines, the LGBTQ+ operated tasting room in the downtown corridor.