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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, March 31, 2017 - Volume 45 Issue 13
Three Dollar Bill Cinema co-presents STRIKE A POSE at Northwest Film Forum April 5
Arts & Entertainment
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Three Dollar Bill Cinema co-presents STRIKE A POSE at Northwest Film Forum April 5

STRIKE A POSE
THREE DOLLAR BILL CINEMA
NORTHWEST FILM FORUM
April 5 @ 7pm


Dare to express yourself anew in this heartwarming update on Madonna's 1990 Blond Ambition World Tour backup dancers, showcased in the iconic documentary TRUTH OR DARE. Those seven young men have lived to tell, 25 years later, their wonderfully funny and sometimes bitterly emotional memories and insights, touching on issues such as AIDS, coming out, addiction, and the price of fame. With surprising literal and figurative twists and turns, the dancers (six gay, one straight) open their hearts once more. Fueled by a nostalgic look at the tour and the original film's 'controversies' (the infamous gay kissing scene), and updated with poetic dance vignettes and a poignant score, STRIKE A POSE is a real ray of light.



In 1990, seven young dancers joined pop star Madonna on her most controversial world tour. Wild, talented and barely twenty, the dancers set out on the trip of a lifetime. Their journey was captured in TRUTH OR DARE, one of the highest-grossing documentaries ever. As a self-proclaimed mother to her six Gay dancers plus straight Oliver, Madonna used the film to take a stand on Gay rights, freedom of expression and the fight against AIDS. Madonna's flamboyant dancers became icons of sexual freedom, inspiring people all over the world to be who you are.

At the height of the AIDS epidemic and in the aftermath of the conservative Reagan era, TRUTH OR DARE introduced audiences to fun-loving, bold and larger-than-life Gay characters. The film was groundbreaking, featuring two guys kissing passionately during the famous 'Truth or Dare' scene. Madonna, determined to push the envelope, defended the film ferociously: 'If you keep putting something in people's faces, eventually, maybe they can come to terms with it.' The message stuck: even today, the dancers receive thank-you letters from people around the world recalling how the film changed their lives.

Although they were pivotal to Madonna's message, the dancers weren't living it. In fact, Gabriel wasn't 'out' about being Gay at all. After failing to persuade Madonna to cut out the kissing scene that would out him to his family and friends, he filed a lawsuit against her. A few years later, the 26-year-old died of AIDS, a disease that had shamed him into silence. And Gabriel wasn't the only one. Carlton - big, bold and the only dancer who was trusted to lift up the pop icon - was HIV-positive and almost collapsed under the secret that he was carrying on tour. Years of faking and lying distort his life to this day.

In STRIKE A POSE, we encounter the dancers on a new journey. For the first time they tell us how hard it has been to live the liberated life they were promoting on stage. Their incredible stories reveal how fear of other people's judgment holds us back and how hard it is to accept yourself when you feel different. Twenty-five years after the tour and the film that marked pop and Gay culture as much as their own lives, the dancers, their dramatic stories and their fierce moves inspire us once again. What does it really take to express yourself?



STRIKE A POSE will screen at Northwest Film Forum (1515 12th Ave.) on Wednesday, April 5 at 7pm at part of Three Dollar Bill Cinema's First Wednesday Queer Film Series. Admission is FREE for Three Dollar Bill Cinema members and $12 for Not-Yet-Members. For more information and advance tickets, visit https://www.threedollarbillcinema.org/
Courtesy of Northwest Film Forum and Three Dollar Bill Cinema

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