The Tenderloin Museum marks its 2nd anniversary in the midst of an important year in the history of San Francisco – it’s the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love and the 100th anniversary of the “anti-vice” Tenderloin neighborhood shutdown. On Saturday, May 13, the Tenderloin Museum is inviting its friends and neighbors to celebrate the Tenderloin’s unique contributions to San Francisco history with daylong free museum admission and free public programs from 4 pm to 9 pm, featuring accounts of the “Invisible Circus” from the Diggers, San Francisco Chronicle Columnist David Talbot, the first-ever reading of the new play The Compton’s Cafeteria Riot, and a dynamic jazz night by SF Recovery Theater. We’re excited to show off the best the neighborhood has to offer and celebrate the 31 square blocks we call home.
4pm, The Diggers' "Invisible Circus" Remembered
Come hear what the Summer of Love was like in the Tenderloin. Judy Goldhaft (original participant in the Diggers) and Eric Noble (Diggers archivist) talk with LisaRuth Elliott (Shaping San Francisco's co-director) about who the Diggers were, and their radical anti-capitalist philosophy and activities. They will share archival materials and personal experiences from the Diggers' "Invisible Circus" Happening at Glide Church on February 24, 1967. Stories about the "Invisible Circus" became legend in San Francisco’s hip community for years. Originally billed as a 72 hour event, participants were thrown out within 24 hours. See the poster from the event and hear stories of the spectacle from the Diggers themselves.
5pm, David Talbot on the Summer of Love, Season of the Witch, and the Tenderloin
Author of the best selling book on San Francisco’s Summer of Love and its aftermath, San Francisco Chronicle columnist David Talbot gives his unique perspective on this seminal time in history.
6pm, The Compton’s Cafeteria Riot
Join us for the first-ever reading of scenes from a new play about Tenderloin history, The Compton’s Cafeteria Riot, based on events surrounding the United States’ first-ever anti-police riot by the LGBTQ community. Followed by dazzling drag performances by co-authors Donna Personna & Collette LeGrande, and joined by Olivia Hart (all featured in James Hosking’s film about Aunt Charlie’s bar, Beautiful by Night). The play is being co-produced by the Tenderloin Museum and writer Mark Nassar, co-creator of Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, and will premiere this fall in the Tenderloin.
7:30, SF Recovery Theater: Night at the Black Hawk
Join us for a raucous tour-de-force performance of some of the best musical talent in the neighborhood! Night at the Black Hawk is a live jazz concert, part of an ongoing series that reflects on the lives and stories of the artists, musicians, and residents that lived in the shadow of the Black Hawk Jazz Club.
A former member of the Diggers, Judy Goldhaft is an activist who has used art, theater and education to further social change in urban and rural locations to promote community empowerment and bioregional ecological education. Judy has performed dance, street theater, life acting, multispecies theater and single person performance pieces. Judy has been a guiding force with the ecological educational nonprofit Planet Drum Foundation since its inception in 1973, serving currently as its director. She also gardens, and is a maker, repairer, and reuser.
After reading a copy of the Digger Papers while living in Ohio in 1968, Eric Noble dropped out of college and made his way across the country to find the Diggers. From 1968 to 1971 he lived a peripatetic existence in lots of different communes along the way. Once in San Francisco in 1971, he moved into the Kaliflower commune, an offshoot inspired by the Diggers. Learning about how prolific the Digger movement had been in terms of written material, he collected whatever he could find and became known as the Digger archivist, so named by Peter Berg. His project, the Digger Archives have been online in some form since 1995, and continue to inspire people all over the world.
Shaping San Francisco is a participatory community history project dedicated to uncovering and sharing the overlooked and forgotten histories of the City. Through Free Public Talks, Walking and Bicycle History Tours, and our digital archive at Foundsf.org, Shaping San Francisco seeks to make history together, recognizing that "History is a Creative Act in the Present." shapingsf.org, foundsf.org, diggers.org, planetdrum.org
David Talbot is a bestselling author, journalist, media entrepreneur and political activist. He is the founder and former editor-in-chief of the pioneering online publication Salon and a former senior editor of Mother Jones magazine. In recent years, he has built a reputation as a popular historian with books such as the national bestseller Season of the Witch and the New York Times bestsellers The Devil’s Chessboard and Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years. Talbot has written for Time magazine, The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, and other publications. He is currently a columnist at the San Francisco Chronicle. He is also a cofounder of San Francisco Vision, a progressive coalition that fights for “San Francisco values.”
Mark Nassar along with Tenderloin Museum director Katie Conry conceived of the idea of an interactive play based on the Compton’s Cafeteria riot, inspired by the Tenderloin Museum’s exhibits on the subject. Nassar, in collaboration with long-term Tenderloin drag queens Donna Persona and Collette LeGrande, has spent the past year writing the play The Compton’s Cafeteria Riot. He boasts an impressive record of artistic success, having written plays and screenplays, and has also acted in theater, TV and film. Mr. Nassar is also the co-creator of Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, the longest running Off-Broadway comedy in New York City history. More recently, he wrote the screenplay, A Line in the Sand, a film directed by Jeffrey Chernov, in which he also had a principal role. In 2008, the film won Best Feature and the Audience Award at numerous film festivals, as well as the Grand Jury prize at the Canada International Film Festival. He also attended the Djerassi Artists Residency in Woodside, California, where he completed a new play, Shouting in the Wilderness, and is currently playing Sal the owner in San Francisco’s immersive hit – The Speakeasy.
Collette LeGrande is the twice former Grand Duchess of the Ducal Court of San Francisco. She has raised funds for charity in the Tenderloin for 30 years, supporting AIDS Emergency Fund, Magnet, Mama Reinhardt's Toys for Tots, and many others. She has worked at Aunt Charlie’s since 1998 and organizes her own bi-weekly drag show, the Dream Queens Revue.
Donna Personna is an artist and performer, who first hit the stage with the legendary Cockettes. She was the subject of the 2013 Iris Prize-winning short “My Mother,” by Jay Bedwani, and is currently in production with Bedwani on another documentary film. She serves on the board of directors committees for Trans March and the Transgender Day of Remembrance, working to gain wider visibility for transgender rights.
Olivia Hart is a chef by day and performer by night. She is the current Grand Duchess of the Ducal Court of San Francisco. She has organized and hosted numerous events to benefit the LGBT community and, in particular, organizations that support addiction recovery and sober living.
The San Francisco Recovery Theatre is a grassroots organization with a lot of local and some municipal support. It is funded by grants from the art and health community in San Francisco with no full time staff, but with a core group of dedicated actors, composed mainly of people in recovery. Its mission is to meet people where they are, provide a medium of communication and deliver a message of hope, consequence and solutions. http://sfrecoverytheatre.org
This event is sponsored in part by a grant from Grants for the Arts/General Fund Portion of the San Francisco Hotel Tax Fund.