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Legacy Project, Affinity co-host screening of Brother Outsider
From a news release
2012-03-14

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The Legacy Project and Affinity Community Services are proud to announce a special screening of "BROTHER OUTSIDER: The Life of Bayard Rustin" featuring a rare Q&A with the award-winning film's creator and co-director Bennett Singer.

CINEMA Q — II

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 28, 6:30p

CHICAGO CULTURAL CENTER

Claudia Cassidy Theater

78 E. Washington, Chicago

Five years in the making and the winner of more than 25 awards and honors in the U.S. and abroad, BROTHER OUTSIDER illuminates the life and work of Bayard Rustin, a visionary activist and strategist who has been called "the unknown hero" of the civil rights movement. A tireless crusader for social and economic justice, a disciple of Gandhi, and a mentor to Martin Luther King, Jr., Rustin dared to live as an openly gay man during the fiercely homophobic 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. BROTHER OUTSIDER reveals the price that Rustin paid for this openness, chronicling both the triumphs and setbacks of his remarkable 60-year career. The film has been described as "powerful and startling" ( The Advocate ) , "poignant" ( TIME ) , "rich in humanity" ( Africana.com ) , "brilliant" ( Wall Street Journal ) and "a potent and persuasive piece of historical rediscovery" ( Los Angeles Times ) .

Victor Salvo, Executive Director of The Legacy Project, said "We are thrilled to be able to bring this important film to Chicago along with its filmmaker, Bennett Singer, who has never before had an opportunity to conduct a Q&A with a Chicago audience. We are especially pleased to be able to co-host this special screening with our friends at Affinity Community Services, and are grateful to Richard Knight, Jr. of the Queer Film Society for inviting us to participate in this year's CINEMA Q — II LGBT film series at Chicago's beautiful Cultural Center."

Kim Hunt, Executive Director of Affinity Community Services echoed Salvo's sentiments, saying "It's really unfortunate that more people don't know about Bayard Rustin's immense contributions to the Civil Rights Movement for Black Americans and the freedom of all people. The fact that he did this work as an openly gay, Black man challenges notions about the incompatibility of struggles for civil rights for Black people and civil rights for LGBT people."

Salvo added "Kim and I have been working together for the last year as part of the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance and the Prevent School Violence/Illinois coalition of organizations to address the social isolation and cultural marginalization that leads to despair and bullying among today's youth — especially LGBTQ youth. We hope all LGBTQ youth will consider taking advantage of this free screening to come and learn about the incredible contributions made by Bayard Rustin, who rose from extremely humble origins to lead the Civil Rights Movement as an unapologetic, openly gay man during the deeply homophobic 1940s, 50s and 60s. What he endured cannot be imagined by those of us who take our freedoms for granted — yet he triumphed in the face of great opposition and adversity. It is a message we hope will resonate with LGBTQ youth who desperately need historically significant role models to build a sense of their own potential to have a positive impact on the world we share."

***

The Legacy Project is a 501 ( c ) 3 Chicago-based non-profit conceived to oversee the creation of "The Legacy Walk" — the world's only outdoor international "museum walk" to highlight the contributions Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender people have made to world history and culture. Bayard Rustin will be among The Legacy Walk's 2012 Inductees when the installation is dedicated on October 11, 2012 — "National Coming-Out Day." Through the Legacy Project Education Initiative the organization plans to provide educational resources to students, teachers and parents to help bring knowledge of GLBT contributions to those who need it most.

Affinity Community Services is a social justice organization that works with and on behalf of Black LGBTQ communities, queer youth, and allies to identify emergent needs, create safe spaces, develop leaders, and bridge communities through collective analysis and action for social justice, freedom, and human rights. Bayard Rustin's belief in the "oneness of the human family" centers Affinity's work in the areas of health and wellness, civic engagement, and immigration reform.

BENNETT SINGER, of Question Why Films, is a New York-based filmmaker and writer who produced and co-directed BROTHER OUTSIDER. Bennett's previous documentary credits include the Emmy- and Peabody-Award-winning EYES ON THE PRIZE II; WITH GOD ON OUR SIDE: THE RISE OF THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT IN AMERICA; and THE QUESTION OF EQUALITY, all broadcast nationally on PBS. He is currently at work on ELECTORAL DYSFUNCTION, a feature-length documentary that uses irreverent humor to show why America's voting system is broken—and how it can be fixed.

The CINEMA Q — II Film Series at the Cultural Center will run the entire month of March at the Cultural Center. For more information contact the Queer Film Society.

See related story at www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Bayard-Rustin-confab-at-UIC/36707.html


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