Event Calendar

June 2018
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Keep the Promise 2016


JFAC717Alt“Keep the Promise” to Cancel Cleveland March; Will Continue with Free Concert Sunday, July 17th

In light of Dallas and other recent deadly incidents nationwide, advocates planning the July 17th “Keep the Promise’” March and Free Concert are cancelling the march, but will go on with the free “Keep the Promise” concert at the Wolstein Center at Cleveland State University the day before the RNC starts.

Concert will also serves as a forum for advocates to publicly call on Republicans to articulate clear domestic and global policies on HIV/AIDS, income inequality and other critical social justice issues.

CLEVELAND, OH (July 8, 2016) In light of Dallas and other recent deadly incidents nationwide, AIDS and health care advocates planning the Cleveland ‘Keep the Promise’ free concert and march (#KTPUSA) issued the following statement regarding their decision to cancel the march portion of “Keep the Promise” in Cleveland on Sunday, July 17th but will carry on with the free “Keep the Promise” concert at the Wolstein Center at Cleveland State University as planned.

“In the current uncertain environment nationwide, we are concerned for police officers who would be charged with protecting our marchers and advocates as well as for the safety and wellbeing of our march participants. In an abundance of caution, we have therefore decided to remain on campus and not march. We feel strongly that remaining on campus at The Wolstein Center at Cleveland State University allows us the share our ‘Keep the Promise’ message loudly and clearly without increased risk for police and all participants in the event. We sincerely hope that the current perilous environment for democratic discourse will improve, for it is our freedom that we cherish which is at risk from the senseless violence we are enduring. We appeal to everyone across the political spectrum to bring civility back into the public discourse.”

Michael Weinstein, President, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, and
Tracy Jones, Midwest Regional Director & National Director of Advocacy Campaigns for AHF.

The upcoming ‘Keep the Promise’ in Cleveland will bookend a parallel ‘Keep the Promise 2016’ concert and march taking place 8,600 miles away in Durban, South Africa on July 16th calling for similar awareness and action on the fight to end global AIDS. That Keep the Promise event takes place before the opening of ‘AIDS2016,’ the 21st International AIDS Conference and will feature performances by Queen Latifah and Common.

About AHF
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is the largest non-profit HIV/AIDS healthcare provider in the USA. AHF currently provides medical care and/or services to more than 600,000 individuals in 36 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, Eastern Europe, and Asia. Additional information is available at www.aidshealth.org, find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/aidshealth and follow us on Twitter & Instagram: @AIDSHealthcare


WHEN: SUNDAY, July 17, 2016—-5:00 PM (Doors open at 4:00 PM)

2000 Prospect Ave., Cleveland, OH 44115

WHO: Soledad O’Brien, Host

Keynote Addresses by civil rights leaders:
Dr. Cornel West
Diane Guerrero, Actress (Orange is the New Black, Jane the
Virgin) and White House Ambassador for Citizenship and

Musical Guests:
The Roots, Grammy Award-winning band
Jussie Smollett (FOX’s Empire television series)
Mary Mary, Grammy Award-winning contemporary gospel duo
Raheem DeVaughn, singer/songwriter

Other performances, guests, speakers TBD

Special Guest:
James Brown, Legendary former Cleveland Browns fullback, who will accept an award on behalf of the City of Cleveland

• Rebecca Strong, AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland
Phone: (216) 621-0766 x.2915, Mobile (216) 235-3417 rstrong@clevelandtaskforce.org
•Mr. W. Imara Canady, AHF Regional Director of Communications and Community Engagement. (954) 952-0258 cell (404) 870-7789 work imara.canady@aidshealth.org

Partners for Cleveland’s ‘Keep the Promise’ include:
• AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland
Free Hugs Project
Reed for Hope Foundation

“While Reverend Sharpton will not be participating in AHF’s ‘Keep The Promise Concert & Rally’ due to the March cancellation, we look forward to his continued partnership, as we work together to raise awareness around HIV/AIDS about AIDS being a Civil Rights Issue at the Congressional Black Caucus in Washington DC this September,” said Samantha Granberry, Senior Director of Marketing, Sales, Media and Special Projects for AHF. “The evening of Sunday, July 17th, AHF is moving forward with our free-to-the-public ‘Keep The Promise Concert and Rally’ featuring Grammy Award-winning artists and the 2016 NBA band, The Roots; keynote speaker, Dr. Cornel West; Host, Soledad O’Brian; FOX TV’s star of the hit show ‘Empire,’ Jussie Smollett, and others. We applaud this myriad of social influencers, acclaimed artists, and community leaders who have opted to use their platforms to magnify our Foundation’s non-partisan cause and call to action. We ask concerned citizens to join us as we rally to ensure elected officials ‘Keep The Promise’ around healthcare rights, civil rights, and human rights for us all.”

The Cleveland ‘Keep the Promise’ is the fifth in a series of similar KTP events spearheaded by AHF since 2012, with the inaugural event in Washington, DC, in July 2012, followed by KTP events in Atlanta (Nov. 2012); Brooklyn, NY (Apr. 2013) and a prior ‘Keep the Promise’ held in Cleveland in May, 2013.

More information about the “Keep the Promise” effort can be found at http://usakeepthepromise.org

ArtCares Jr. 2016


artcares jr logo final

A special exhibition and auction featuring the work of young artists.


Most young people enjoy creative activities: writing, drawing and designing are ways to express who they are, how they feel, and their relationship to the world around them. Creative activities provide opportunities to examine real-life issues and problems – including HIV and AIDS and the stigma attached to it. Art is often a major way children communicate.

ArtCares Jr. is an opportunity for young artists between the ages of 3 and 14 to show off their talents and skills while offering their support for those infected, affected and at-risk for HIV/AIDS. ArtCares Jr. is being presented by the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland, an affiliate of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation.

Young artists are given a blank canvas to use as they choose. Any kind of art is accepted – paintings, watercolor, pen and ink, pastel or any other medium they chose to work in. Their art will be displayed at the 78th Street Studios popular ‘Third Friday’ on Friday, February 19, 2016, at a special reception from 5-9pm. Works will be auctioned off in a silent auction to help raise funds for the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland.

To download the submission form: 2016-ArtCares-Jr.-Submission-Form

For more information, or to learn how to participate, contact Rebecca Murray-Strong at 216-621-0766, extension 2915, or rstrong@clevelandtaskforce.org.


ArtCares Jr. is presented with the generous support of:

Blick logo78th Street logo

Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens

Welcome to Saucy Jack’s cosmic cabaret – a nightclub at the edge of the galaxy, in a world where vinyl, plastic, and other exotic fabrics have been outlawed.   When Dr. Willhelm von Whackoff – Willy to his friends – isn’t working on his psychiatric studies, he hangs out at the bar, chatting with bartender Mitch Maypole, musician Sammy Sax, and waitress Booby Shevalle. Sammy dreams of success on the stage, while Booby has an even grander dream: she wants to escape her life of drudgery and become a Space Vixen, one of the super-fashionable, super-heroic crime fighters who patrol the galaxy. But something is amiss at Saucy Jack’s, when one after another, the club’s performers turn up dead – murdered with a slingback stiletto-heeled pump – just as they were on the verge of greatness.   Who will be next? What is Saucy Jack hiding? Why has plastics smuggler Chesty Prospects arrived, and what is the business that she has with Saucy Jack? It’s a job for the Space Vixens themselves, who appear on the scene to solve the crime and liberate the world through the power of disco, glitter boots, and fashion!

The performance will be a staged concert production; it will be performed in costume with some props, but will not feature sets, lighting effects, etc. The show is performed in two acts with an intermission.

Ticket Price: $25.00 (general admission)

Available from the AIDS Taskforce at http://bit.ly/SaucyJack, or call the Taskforce at 216-621-0766 ext. 2915


The book and lyrics for “Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens” were written by Charlotte Mann and Michael Fidler, with Music by Jonathan Croose and Robin Forrest, additional music by Adam Meggido and James Compton. The show is based on original ideas by Johanna Allitt, Simon Curtis, Charlotte Mann and Michael Fidler. “Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens” was first performed at C Venue at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival on August 9, 1995, produced by Johanna Allitt and Michael Fidler. It premiered in the West End of London, produced by Ian Lenagan for Counterpoint Theatre, at the Queen’s Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue on March 25, 1998.

“Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens” is not intended for children, though parents should use their discretion in determining whether it would be appropriate.   While sexy and suggestive, with plenty of adult situations, the show does not contain profanity and, in the words of the authors, “pretends to be a little more racy than it actually is.”


Directed by: Curt Arnold

Music Direction by: Butch Marshall


The cast features some familiar faces, along with several performers who, while new to our production, have been seen at theatres throughout Northeast Ohio. Dan Folino (who previously acted in the 2009, 2012, 2013 and 2014 ATFGC/CAN benefit productions) appears as Saucy Jack himself. Tricia Bestic (2002, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013) leads the Space Vixens as Jubilee Climax, with two newcomers to our stage, Leslie Andrews and Neely Gevaart, as fellow Vixens Bunny Lingus and Anna Labia.   The staff of Saucy Jack’s cabaret includes bartender Mitch Maypole, played by newcomer Michael Majer, musical virtuoso Sammy Sax, played by Pat Miller (2014), and downtrodden waitress-with-a-dream Booby Shevalle, played by newcomer Matthew Ryan Thompson.   Providing ongoing commentary to the audience is Jonathan Kronenberger (2011, 2012, 2013) in the role of Dr. Willhelm von Whackoff, while Amiee Collier, appearing in her eighth ATFGC/CAN production (2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014), portrays visitor Chesty Prospects. A longtime favorite of our audiences, Kevin Joseph Kelly (2004, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2014) appears as the sultry torch singer Vulva Savannah. Mr. Folino and Miss Bestic appear with the permission of Actors’ Equity Association, through the Theatre Authority.

The orchestra, led by Mr. Marshall, features Tim Keo on bass, and Gregory Cross on drums.


Cleveland Performance Information

Performance Date: Monday, August 31, 2015

Performance Space: Cassidy Theatre, 6200 Pearl Road

Performance Time: 8:00 pm


The performance benefits the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland


Ticket Price: $25.00 (general admission)

Available from the AIDS Taskforce at http://bit.ly/SaucyJack, or call the Taskforce at 216-621-0766 ext. 2915