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Musician Denis Fernando will be presenting his performance at GFEST 2010 PerformancesCochrane Theatre, Southampton Row, Bloomsbury, London WC1B 4AP. Box Office: 020 7269 1606
Saturday 20 Nov / 7.30 PM

GFEST 2010 chat with Denis :

What are doing right now?

Getting ready to go to Labour party conference – I am involved in an event about celebrating diversity and challenging racism – its going to be interesting to see who the leader of the party is going to be. Labour needs to stand up for the arts as a practical form of investment in the economy which in turn fuels growth.

How do you see your work?

Hmmm….I guess it’s minimal classical piano music, which would make me a composer and a performer.  The fact that I am getting to do it at all though is very rock and roll (to me anyway…)

How is your work or practice relevant today as queer art work?

I think we have moved beyond the stereotypes.  Its no longer just about camp pop music (although that still has its place) but our culture reflecting the complexity of our many identities.  I find this really refreshing about living in London – there’s a scene for everyone, even if you reject the scene.

Tell us why do you want to present your work in GFEST 2010?

I love the fact that there is a diverse arts festival that showcases our community.  This year I am presenting two very melancholic piano pieces which hopefully will challenge the preconceptions both of what to expect from LGBT art, but also from a young person living in London today.

Please tell us about your view on ‘Art Vs. Sexuality’ debate:

I think we are all our identities, but simultaneously, what we do have (is) the power to transcend identity and speak to the listener/viewer on their terms, and their experiences.  It’s one of the most powerful qualities about music.

How do you fund your work?

On lots of goodwill!  There are unfortunately not many forums looking to fund the kind of work I do – I’m too classical for the pop and contemporary funders and not male and white enough for the classical funders! That’s what makes things like GFEST so important.

How do you publicise or market your work and would you require specific support in terms of getting your work out there?

I have produced CDs, vinyl, and my tracks are available on itunes.  I also use the web and email a lot. Some of the print media have been really supportive, from the Eastern Eye through to the Sunday Post, but I would like to get more profile in the music press.

How would you like your work to be known?

If I can play a set and have people want to know more about the music, that’s the best feeling ever. I would really like to be known as a composer and performer.

What are the future needs for the ‘gay or queer art’ sector?

The Future’s bright – I think there are more opportunities and avenues to get your creativity out there than ever before – the internet has really made that possible – but it will require increasing imagination to be ahead of the curve on this  – so I think marketing and communication will increasingly become its own creative art form!

A single wish ?

What anything? that we save the planet by cutting carbon and invest in natural renewable energy! If we are having a party to celebrate, I’ll play. For free  : -)

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LONDON: GAY ART FESTIVAL : GFEST 2010 showreel on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwJ9UWJX1fg

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GFEST 2010  images on  http://www.flickr.com/photos/GFEST

GFEST 2010 Performers: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gfest/sets/72157624995681186/

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More info on GFEST – Gaywise FESTival (GFEST for short) web:  http://www.gaywisefestival.org.uk/

GFEST Artistic Director: Niranjan Kamatkar

WISE THOUGHTS is an arts charity that organises GFEST – Gaywise FESTival  in venues across London.

GFEST web networks: http://www.wisethoughts.org http://www.gaywisefestival.org.uk http://www.facebook.com/niranjan.kamatkar http://www.gaywisefestival.blogspot.com/ http://twitter.com/gfest https://gaywisefestival.wordpress.com/ http://www.yoursemotionally.com/ http://www.myspace.com/interviewwithapolitician http://www.flickr.com/photos/gfest/ http://www.youtube.com/user/wisethoughts http://uk.linkedin.com/in/niranjankamatkar http://www.myspace.com/gaywisefestival

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