Tampa Bay’s Overheard: St. Gina’sBurg, Newton picks sides and The Studio @ 620 has Tunnelvision

Duncan in the ‘Burg

You may see a familiar face more often as you run your errands around downtown or grab a latte at your favorite coffee shop in St. Petersburg. Equality Florida’s Director of Transgender Equality Gina Duncan announced May 25 on her Facebook page that as of the end of June she will call St. Pete her new home after living in Orlando for 37 years.

“While I will always have a soft spot in my heart for the City Beautiful and its amazing people, I am excited about this next adventure. Fortunately my position with Equality Florida lets me live anywhere in the state,” Duncan wrote. Along with those heartfelt words Duncan, posted a photo of herself on St. Pete’s amazing beach at sundown calling it “heaven.”

Indeed it is Gina, and welcome.

Which Rick to pick?

The people of Pinellas County have begun picking sides for the upcoming St. Petersburg mayoral race against incumbent Rick Kriseman, seeking his second term, and former St. Pete mayor Rick Baker, who held the position of mayor from 2001 to 2010. While the race is non-partisan, all sides have wasted no time in pointing out that Kriseman is a Democrat and Baker is a Republican.

This made it all the more surprising when Florida’s District 70 Representative Wengay Newton, a well-known Democrat, announced that he was endorsing Baker and not Kriseman. Newton endorsed Kriseman when he ran for mayor the first time in 2013 against Bill Foster while Newton was still serving on the City Council, so what’s changed since then? Well, since then Newton ran for the State House and, in the primary last year against openly gay businessman Dan Fiorini and attorney Christopher “C.J.” Czaia, Kriseman endorsed Fiorini.

“I went to Kriseman for support in my House race. He told me to pound sand,” Newton said to the SaintPetersBlog, but he insists his endorsement of Baker has nothing to do with that. Sounds a bit like the makings of a Taylor Swift song to us.

Queer Eye for the Rock Guy

Award-winning musician, activist and founder of the rock band Boys’ Entrance, Tim Cain has turned his 2016 album Tunnelvision into a new queer rock opera called Tunnelvision: The Musical. The album took 10 years to make and features 17 songs that explore Cain’s sexual obsession. It was released last May for the band’s 25th anniversary.

Cain has said that about halfway through making the album he realized a dialogue going on in the songs and started on the track to turning it into an opera. Set in the late 80s during the AIDS epidemic, the opera tells the story of Tim, who is gay, and Troy, who is straight, and their tumultuous relationship.

Tunnelvision: The Musical is making its world premiere at The Studio @ 620 in St. Petersburg with an opening night June 9, and playing through June 11 and again June 15-18.

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