Review: Gala Greatness-Let’s Do it for 40 More!

The Spectrum Center’s Pink Carpet Gala event happened this past Friday at Hill Auditorium, and both I and my colleague Kayla Silverstein enjoyed it thoroughly.

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Since she already gave it such a raving review of the event, I would like to just provide my own personal experiences with the show, because it really was all that Kayla said it was, and more.

The speeches were incredible. Absolutely inspiring. Especially as a gay identified student here on campus that has spent a lot of time in the Spectrum Center and learned so much from the volunteers and employees that work so hard there. I am proud to have been able to celebrate so many milestones in my past three years here with the Spectrum Center. Their programming took me to the National Equality March in 2009, MBLGTACC 2010 in Madison, Wisconsin, gave me the opportunity to participate on an executive level with the planning of MBLGTACC 2011 here at the UofM, and has helped me become the proud Gay man I am today. This event meant so means so much to the community because it was the first ever office on a college campus to deal with LGBT issues, and as the co-founder and first publicly out gay person in Michigan, the speech of Jim Toy was the most hard hitting for me. This man is a legend in the LGBT activism world, and it is an honor to have met him on numerous occasions.


The speeches of Chris Armstrong and his father also brought me and most of the people around me to tears. It wasn’t so long ago that Chris was being targeted and slandered, and his family is so moved that our campus stood up and supported Chris in such a huge way. I’ve known Chris ever since my freshman year. He is a fantastic individual and it makes me proud to have been there with him, standing on the diag and at Gayz Craze with him. Andrew Shirvell approached me one time during his time here on campus, and him knowing my name and face before he met me was a little terrifying, so I can only imagine how Chris felt. UofM has proven once again exactly what the Michigan Difference is and that we will stand by our own.

Anyway, to the performers, since that what I’m really supposed to write about. Gavin Creel is amazing. I have to admit, I knew nothing about any of the performers before Friday (I’m more of what I like to call an “Old Gay” in that I listen to people like Patti Lupone, Bette Midler, Bernadette Peters, Dick Van Dyke). I absolutely loved Gavin Creel though. This man, I believe, was THE performer of the night. He sang Something’s Coming from West Side Story and I swear I couldn’t stop gripping the arm of the person next to me. He was amazing.

Gavin Creel...All I can say is Yummy!
Gavin Creel...All I can say is Yummy!

Everyone that performed was amazing. I think Kayla pretty much sums up how I feel about the other performers, and about how the crowd felt in her review, so I won’t make you read it all again. I really just wanted to report how amazing it felt to be in such a large crowd of LGBTQA people with highly supportive performers and University of Michigan faculty members. The love available in this community is really like nothing else you can ever experience. Plus, we throw the BEST parties!

Stay tuned for more about the Spectrum Birthday Weekend! (And of course by stay tuned I mean read my other review!)
Sending you love and light,

Danny Fob

Preview: Who wouldn’t want to walk the Pink Carpet at a Celebrity Gala?

Spectrum Anniversary Doing it for 40 years!
Spectrum Anniversary "Doing it for 40 years!"

Have you heard? The University of Michigan Spectrum Center is celebrating its 40th anniversary of being here on campus and we have all

been invited to the multitude of events they are putting on, and have put on, all year long. This coming weekend is the biggest weekend of the year, full of events, shows, parties, alumni, food, football, and anything else you can think of to do here on campus. For those who don’t know, the Spectrum Center is the first ever office to deal with LGBT affairs on a college campus. It is now the oldest one and has inspired countless others in universities all over the United States. Founded by Jim Toy in 1971, the office helps students from all parts of campus to become active in the LGBTQA community, to become more comfortable with themselves, and educates the campus community about what it means to be LGBTQ or an ally.

That being said, let’s talk about this weekend! So many things are happening that I had to choose, so of course I went with the Gala full of Broadway celebs and David Burtka, American Actor and Chef, engaged to Neil Patrick Harris. The show includes performances from musical theater stars and also a tribute written specially for the Spectrum Center’s anniversary by Laura Anne Karpman, a UofM School of Music Graduate.

Cutest Dads EVER!
Cutest Dads EVER!

Feel encouraged to check out the Spectrum Center’s website for more info about other events happening this weekend and to explore a little bit more of their history and function.

The Pink Carpet Gala Event takes place at 8pm in Rackham Auditorium. Tickets are free, so I highly recommend coming to this event. How often do you get to see something so fabulous?

Sending you love and light (all that’s needed to make a rainbow),

Danny Fob