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"Pink Orchids" post-show discussions on HIV planned through June

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Chicago — Pride Films and Plays has announced a series of discussions in conjunction with its American premiere of PINK ORCHIDS - a British play in which five eloquently interwoven and often funny monologues explore the experience of living with HIV from the perspectives of those living with the virus and those who care for and care about HIV+ persons. Staff members from Test Positive Awareness Network ( TPAN ) and other HIV activists will lead the weekly discussions about living with in a world with HIV — either as someone who has tested positive for the virus or is vulnerable to it. The discussions will be held following the Friday night performances of PINK ORCHIDS, in The Buena, Pride Arts Center, 4147 N. Broadway, between Friday, June 15 and Friday, July 6. Free wine and beer will be served, and TPAN will provide free HIV and HEP-C testing and PrEP/PEP referrals. Curtain times for the Friday evening performances ( and all evening performances ) are 7:30 pm. The running time of the show is approximately 80 minutes and the discussions will begin shortly after the performance. Reservations are recommended for the PINK ORCHIDS performance, but are not required to attend the post-show discussions and screenings.

TPAN, Test Positive Aware Network, provides services for those vulnerable to and living with HIV and related health conditions. Its mission is to save lives and empower those affected by HIV. Its national magazine, Positively Aware, is a trusted source of HIV treatment news.

The topics and speakers are as follows:

Friday, June 15

HIV Stigma: Then and Now

Andrew Kain Miller, Events Manager, TPAN

Valerie Gorman, Retired Clinical Specialist, Cardiovascular Nursing

Friday, June 22

Dating with HIV

Christopher Pazdernik, Artistic Director, Refuge Theatre Project and HIV activist

Other guests to be announced

Friday, June 29

The HIV Crisis Today

Guests to be announced

Friday, July 6

PrEP - Myth vs. Fact

Kevin Bernal, Peer Health Navigator at TPAN

TPAN, Test Positive Aware Network, provides services for those vulnerable to and living with HIV and related health conditions. Its mission is to save lives and empower those affected by HIV. Its national magazine, Positively Aware, is a trusted source of HIV treatment news.

PINK ORCHIDS premiered in London in 2016 under the title THE HIV MONOLOGUES. This production will be directed by Brennan T. Jones and will open to the press on Friday, June 8 at 7:30 pm, in the Pride Arts Center's Buena space. Jones directed JUMPERS FOR GOALPOSTS for Pride Films and Plays in summer 2017 and was Assistant Director for TimeLine Theatre's THE AUDIENCE last fall.

Jones' cast will include Jerome Beck ( DONTRELL, WHO KISSED THE SEA for First Floor, and THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH for Remy Bumppo ), Don Baiocchi ( HOT PINK AND READY TO BLOW for New American Folk Theatre ), Nick Dorado ( AS YOU LIKE IT for Eclectic Full Contact Theatre Company and ON GOLDEN POND at Oil Lamp Theatre ); and Kathleen Puls Andrade, whose stage credits include BIBLE BINGO, part of the LATE NITE CATECHISM series at the Royal George and whose television credits include CHICAGO MED, BOSS, BERNIE and the award winning SHERYL STILL SINGLE.

PINK ORCHIDS begins with Alex ( Beck ) meeting Nick ( Baiocchi ) and finding a connection. This connection is tested when Alex learns Nick is HIV-positive. He procrastinates about how to behave when confronted with Nick's HIV status and makes some regretful mistakes. An Irish nurse, Irene ( Kathleen Puls Andrade ), and a producer, Barney ( Dorado ), also explain how HIV has affected their lives and the devastation caused by media negativity and other elements within society, even from within the LGBT community.

The production team for PINK ORCHIDS will include Evan Frank ( scenic design ), Noel Huntzinger ( costume design ), Blake Cordell ( lighting and sound design ), Hillarie Shockley ( properties design ), Erica Hughes ( Dialect Coach ) and Megan Chaney ( Stage Manager ).

PINK ORCHIDS will open to the press on Friday, June 8, following previews on Wednesday, June 6 and Thursday, June 7. It will run through July 7th, playing in repertory with THE GREEN BAY TREE, which will open on June 13 following previews on June 11 and 12. The "PAC Pride Series" will continue with Joe DiPietro's FUCKING MEN, playing from July 1 — August 25; a world premiere, HURRICANE DAMAGE by Kevin Brofsky playing from August 1 — 26; and the American Premiere of HOLDING THE MAN, by Australian playwright Tommy Murphy, from August 5 — 26, 2018.

Patrick Cash ( playwright ) is a writer living in London. His plays include a queer adaptation of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, THE CLINIC, QUEERS, THE CHEMSEX MONOLOGUES, SUPERFICIAL and THE HIV MONOLOGUES. He is a senior contributing editor to ATTITUDE and has written for VICE and DAZED. Both THE HIV MONOLOGUES and THE CHEMSEX MONOLOGUES are published by Oberon Books, and THE CHEMSEX MONOLOGUES was nominated for the Polari Prize 2017. THE HIV MONOLOGUES was produced in Sydney, Australia in 2017. He also wrote and co-produced the short film series THE GRASS IS ALWAYS GRINDR.

Brennan T. Jones ( director ) BRENNAN T. JONES is a freelance director, dramaturg, and stage manager in Chicago. Past PFP Credits include YANK! ( AD ) and staged readings of Tom Wells' JUMPERS FOR GOALPOSTS ( Director ) and Matt Schutz's SALT FIRE ( Dramaturg ). Brennan has also worked in Chicago with Timeline Theatre, Congo Square Theatre, Victory Gardens, and Porchlight Music Theatre, and is a resident artist at Redtwist Theatre. He is a recent graduate of the Theatre School at DePaul University, and also attended Virginia Commonwealth University. Upcoming: SAGGITARIUS PONDEROSA at Redtwist Theatre ( Stage Manager ) and THE BOOK OF DINAH for Exponent Media Group ( Screenwriter ). As always, thanks to Bonnie, Ms. K, and Wes.

Tickets for all events are on sale now at or by phone at 866-411-4111 or 773-857-0222.

PAC Pride Fest


By Patrick Cash

US Premiere

Directed by Brennan T. Jones

June 6 — July 7, 2018

Previews Weds. 6/6 and Thurs. 6/7 at 7:30 pm

Press Opening Fri. 6/8 at 7:30 pm.

Beginning 6/14, Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30 pm, Saturdays at 3:30 pm through July 7. No performance Thursday, July 5. Also Sundays, June 17 and July 1 at 7:30 pm

Buena Theater, Pride Arts Center

4147 N Broadway

Chicago, IL 60613

Tickets: Previews $15, Regular Run: Premium seats $30, General Admission $25, Seniors/Students/Military $23

Tickets available at or by phone at 866-811-4111 or 773-857-0222.

He's just your type. But hold on. He's about to tell you he's got HIV. How will you respond emotionally? Brush it aside and practice safe sex? Go on to a deeper relationship? Or do you walk away? In five eloquently interwoven and often funny monologues, Patrick Cash invites you to explore these emotions of living with a virus that attacks the emotions as well as the body.

"Pink Orchids is a piece that, while full of optimism, doesn't shy away from the very real prejudices that are still aimed at HIV positive people to this very day. It's educational and informative, but at the play's centre are characters that walk off the page and straight into our hearts.' Gay Times


Pride Films and Plays creates diverse new work ( or work that is new to Chicago ) with LGBTQ+ characters or themes that is essential viewing for all audiences. We accomplish this mission through fully-staged productions, writing contests and staged readings, and filming one short film each season.

PFP is the primary tenant in the Pride Arts Center ( PAC ), which connects and promotes other artists who share our values, creating a safe environment for all. PAC books one-night events or limited runs, cabaret, film, dance, comedy, and other events. PAC opened in 2016 and consists of two performance spaces: The Buena at 4147 N. Broadway which has 50 seats and The Broadway at 4139 N. Broadway which has 85 seats.

Pride Films and Plays is supported by The MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at The Richard Driehaus Foundation, The Illinois Arts Council, City of Chicago's City Arts Fund, the Elliott Fredland Charitable Trust, Proud to Run, the AmazonSmile Foundation, Arts and Business Foundation, Tap Root Foundation and Alphawood Foundation.

PFP is a member of the Smart Growth Program of the Chicago Community Trust. Pride Films and Plays is a member of the LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois and The League of Chicago Theatres.

For more information, visit or call 1.800.737.0984 .


PRIDE ARTS CENTER has become an important part of the arts environment in the Buena Park neighborhood and beyond. In addition to performances by PFP, ( ), PAC hosts monthly events including play readings, film screenings, cabaret nights, and variety shows. Guest productions are also included in the PAC schedule. Find a full calendar of everything happening at PAC here. /

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