Arts & Culture

 

For nearly 20 years, namesake vocalist Alison Goldfrapp and Will Gregory have fashioned the elegant Goldfrapp into a distinctly European-toned, synth-based dream symphony with its front woman as one of pop’s most dramatic and ambiguous personae. Sometimes danceable and cool, sometimes folksy and warm, its new album, "Silver Eye," and tour that brings them to Theatre of Living Arts April 24 is all and neither, but rather something new and nuanced. The rarely chatty Alison Goldfrapp opened up about work, inspirations, androgyny and more.

In this — the month of International Jazz Appreciation, Philadelphia Jazz Month and the Center City Jazz Festival — one woman stands out as a queen of the scene, the priestess of the poetic, the saint of the strum and the goddess of the guitar: Monnette Sudler.

THE ‘KEYS’ TO ATLANTIC CITY: Alternative-rock pianist Ben Folds takes a break from his trio, Ben Folds Five, and his recent gigs with various orchestras to perform solo on his “Ben Folds and a Piano” tour 9 p.m. April 21 at the Borgata Hotel, Casino & Spa Music Box, 1 Borgata Way, Atlantic City, N.J. For more information or tickets, call 609-317-1000.

The multi-talented, mono-monikered and openly gay singer/songwriter Laurice will headline a dance party at Philadelphia Mausoleum of Contemporary Art on April 28. The performer may be unfamiliar to American audiences — perhaps because his music was often deemed “too gay” for airplay — but Laurice has plenty of hits, including “I’m Gonna Smash Your Face In,” “When Christine Comes Around” and “Disco Spaceship.” On the phone from Canada, Laurice chatted with PGN about his upcoming show.

As I was doing research about LGBT travel, I kept reading about how LGBT travelers were sought-after customers because we are “early adopters.” Having traveled quite a bit with the lesbian travel group “A-broad for Adventure,” I can say firsthand that we are an adventurous bunch. There are some things that are unique to LGBT travel. Two of my favorite moments happened in Greece. The first was expanding the mind of my Greek boat captain after he remarked, “I don’t mind gay women because you stay women; I don’t like men because they turn into women.” After 30 minutes of me showing him numerous wonderful trans men and drag kings, he relented. After a week with me, he became an ally and the group has been back to tour with him several more times. My other favorite moment was at a festival in Athens. My partner at the time and I were debating buying a bottle of wine from one of the kiosks. The vendor asked why we were so keen for the one particular bottle. It was wine from the Isle of Lesbos, so we explained that we thought it was cool since we were lesbians. He exclaimed, “What? So am I! What part?” I quipped, “All of me!” He was very confused until we said, “We’re lesbians, as in women together.” At that point, he scoffed and said, “That’s a homosexual. I’m a real Lesbian, born and bred. My whole family has been Lesbian for generations.” We decided not to argue.

Anybody who hangs around South Street in Queen Village knows that, from a culinary standpoint, it’s hard to find something relatively quick and reasonably priced that isn’t in some way, shape or form related to cheese-steaks, pizza, wings or bar food. Which is why we are happy to see something like Puyero, 524 S. Fourth St., open up shop.

Out comedian Eddie Sarfaty is an insightfully funny writer and entertainer, having appeared on “The Today Show,” Logo’s “Wisecrack” and “The Joy Behar Show,” to name a few.

But Sarfaty, who sometimes refers to himself as “ChuckleF**cker,” can also teach you how to be funny on stage, if you are so inclined.

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