Sex, Drugs, and Disco: Miami Gay Men’s Chorus Presents Alex in Discoland

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The Miami Gay Men’s Chorus (MGMC) invites you to take a trip down the rabbit hole with its spring concert, Alex in Discoland. The show premieres tomorrow night at the newly renovated Miami Senior High School Theater. The whimsical concert tells the story of Alex, a young man living in present-day Miami who finds himself transported to the fabulous parties and sexual heyday of late-’70s San Francisco. A reworking of Alice in Wonderland, the show teaches its audience some important lessons about LGBT history and the current dangers of the HIV/AIDS crisis in 2015.

Curated by Anthony Cabrera, artistic director of the MGMC, pieces selected for the concert speak directly to the theme and general feel of late-'70s, early-'80s San Fran. 

The show centers around Alex and the White Rabbit, following them as they experience a slightly kinkier world than the original Alice got to see.

Though, at its heart, the show has a serious tone. Tweedle Dee and Dum get a harsh reality check, the Queen of Heart’s house of cards begins to collapse, and the Mad Hatter has to face the consequences of his actions. Discoland changes forever as it becomes the epicenter of the AIDS crisis.

Cabrera and the MGMC believe it is important to bring Alex in Discoland to a Miami audience because young people need to know what they are risking. The story of Alex is retold and reframed with the younger members of the gay community in mind who did not experience the AIDS crisis firsthand but now have the possibility of avoiding the disease due to an increased cultural awareness.

"Currently, there is a sense of invincibility that has the potential to — and is — making a situation we had somewhat under control begin to spiral into another explosion of the epidemic in our community," Cabrera says.

Discoland's message is indeed one that's incredibly relevant in Miami. Miami-Dade County ranks the highest in Florida in the number of new HIV and AIDS cases, and Miami is consistently at the top of the list — if not number one — in cities with the highest HIV/AIDS rates in the nation.

Although the issues addressed in the concert are somewhat serious, the MGMC strives to create programming that has a particular flare. But through the pageantry lies a deeper message — one that the Miami Gay Men's Chorus sincerely hopes gets through. 

Alex in Discoland. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, June 12 and 13, at Historic Miami Senior High School Theater, 2450 SW First St., Miami. Tickets cost $30 plus fee via miamigaychorus.org

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