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LadyfestGR to hit city for third year

A day showcasing female led-workshops and performances will take over three venues in the Heartside neighborhood on Saturday March 22.
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Dennielle Russ performs on stage at the LadyfestGR 2013 headline show.

Dennielle Russ performs on stage at the LadyfestGR 2013 headline show. /Katy Batdorff

Ladies from Bangarang Circus show off their acrobatics.

Ladies from Bangarang Circus show off their acrobatics. /Katy Batdorff

LadyfestGR is excited for its third annual Ladyfest on Saturday March 22 from 12 a.m.- 6:30 p.m. throughout the Heartside neighborhood. LadyfestGR is a one day event of workshops and musical performances put on and led by exclusively female performers and facilitators, which sets LadyfestGR apart from other Ladyfest events in other cities.

“One of the weird things is that a lot of Ladyfests showcase female performers, but are not exclusively female. We, as a community, decided right off the bat that we wanted to really showcase that women can fill all roles in it. We kind of get in these stereotypical roles and while we can highlight that some women are kicking tail at those specific roles, I want to see them doing everything. Not a lot of Ladyfests are so exclusive about their performers but at the same time we’re totally open to everybody attending and experiencing it. We just want to make sure that the people with the microphones are identified as female,” says LadyfestGR organizer Jes Kramer.

LadyfestGR will host 13 workshops led by women at three locations: Heartside Ministry, Have Company and The Pyramid Scheme. The workshops are free to attend and open to all ages and genders. Workshop topics include “Basic Sex Ed," “Women in Government," “The Business of Women," “Rock your drum kit!” and “Totally Tubular Bike Maintenance.” Ladyfest organizer Sarah Scott is most excited about the short film-making workshop led by Alyson Caillaud-Jones.

“We’ve never done short filmmaking, and Alyson is going to offer a film workshop. It’s a two hour workshop, and she’s selecting a song that we’re going to make a music video to. I’m excited to take part in that and somehow be involved, just to show people how to put together a short film. The goal is to maybe try to shoot the film with folks during those two hours of the workshop and then if possible in real time she’ll try to edit it and air it during the evening,” says Scott.

Following the workshops, The Pyramid Scheme is hosting a variety show starting at 6 p.m. After the variety show is over, a headline show will begin at 9 p.m. at The Pyramid Scheme. The headline show will feature musical performances from The Blow, DJ Lynnee Denise, Lady Ace Boogie and Nobody’s Darlin.' All ages are welcome to attend the variety show with a ticket price of $6. The headline show is for ages 18+ with tickets priced $15 in advance or $17 at the door. Both tickets can be bought as a package deal for $20. Proceeds will go to The Grand Rapids Red Project, an organization devoted to HIV prevention in the Grand Rapids community.

“It’s not easy to spend $20 on an event but it’s really going toward amazing performers and a local organization that’s doing all this great work,” says Scott.

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