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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

MondoHomo gains support and traction

click to enlarge EROTIC LIT GURU: Ifa Bumi will perform a combination of dance and poetry during MondoHomo's opening nigh
  • EROTIC LIT GURU: Ifa Bumi will perform a combination of dance and poetry during MondoHomo's opening nigh

Kiki Carr, MondoHomo's founder and organizer, was skeptical. "This is trying to be in-your-face, radical, queer politics. Atlanta does not, in general, have a lot of support for that," she said in the weeks leading up to this year's festival. But Carr said she was encouraged to apply for a grant from the Fulton County Arts Council to help with a difficult year for fundraising. Recounting her own skepticism, Carr spoke with a mouth full of sarcasm, "I was like, 'They're not going to want to support a bunch of crazy queer folks doing this thing.'"

Carr is happy to admit she was wrong. Fulton County awarded the group a modest grant earlier this year, an event she recounts with incredulity. "I was shocked," she says. "Really? We're, like, official? We count? You want to put us on your website?"

As it enters its fourth year, Atlanta's underground queer festival is becoming part of the establishment. In January, the Advocate, a mainstream magazine that bills itself as "The World's Leading Gay News Source," cited MondoHomo as one of the main reasons for awarding Atlanta with the title "Gayest City in America."

"It's in some ways totally validating, and in other ways this feeling that we've been co-opted," Carr said. "But that's just something you have to be aware of."

This year's festival certainly doesn't show any signs of being co-opted. Beginning Thurs., May 27, the festival will showcase five days of artists, cabaret performers, musicians, spoken word poets, and films that never waver from that "in-your-face, radical, queer" vision.

Continue Reading "MondoHomo gains support and traction"

(Photo Courtesy MondoHomo)

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