Feb 08, 2019
Written by: Dan Murano

Introducing Poet Trees, a collection of ecphrastic poetry written in response to photos of trees. The 66-page book includes the work of seven poets.

Photography by Dan Murano
Poetry editor: Grace Cavalieri
Poets: Ellen Carter, Grace Cavalieri, Geoffrey Himes, Emily Ferrara, Sabine Pascarelli, Maria van Beuren, Ellen Wise.

Jul 09, 2018
Written by: Dan Murano

If you like hiking, you'll love Virginia's Sky Meadows State Park. It's only about an hour from Washington, D.C. The park has miles of rocky trails through forests and meadows and you can even find your way onto the Appalachian Trial from here. Be sure to bring some snacks and water (you won't find these at the top of the mountain), some insect repellent and a comfortable pair of hiking shoes. Our total hike was over eleven miles, but we went about four miles (total) beyond the top of the mountain.

Clicking on the first image will show you a pop-up gallery view, or you can scroll. There is also a gallery at the bottom of the page which includes these and a few other photos.

Jun 21, 2017
Written by: Dan Murano

In the mid to late 1970s, I managed a barely successful nightclub on the North Side of Pittsburgh called the Home Circle Club, which sounded more like a knitting circle than the gay girls bar that it was when my family took over the license.

The club was in a white, brick building with a forty-foot chiseled- hill looming over it. Branches and rocks often tumbled down onto the graveled roof that leaked whenever it rained. Parking was on residential side streets, and public transportation was a shadowy walk through a shuttered neighborhood.

Faux-oak paneled walls surrounded the oval bar and a pool table on the upper level, and table seating overlooked the lower level, which had an oversize stage with a dressing room and a dance floor lit up by strings of Christmas lights flashing to disco beats. An industrial gas heater hanging from the ceiling rumbled like an idling bus through the long Pittsburgh winters, and in summer, pedestal fans churned sweltering air, mixing cigarette smoke with the smell of sour beer.

Our bartender staged a walkout with her customers shortly after we took over, saying she said she didn't like the way we were running the place. Fortunately, I had known Pittsburgh's gay scene for years, so  my friends and I fanned out through the bars to bring in new business. Friends brought their friends and we collected a congenial mix of gay and straight patrons who found the atmosphere homey and comfortable. Some came just for the homemade meals that mom cooked on Wednesdays and Sundays. It was a family operation.

Our new customers included actors from local theater groups, and from one of those groups came Gorman Lowe, who also became a good friend. Gorman had recently played a seriously overweight King Herod in Jesus Christ, Superstar, furiously pedaling an exercise bike while singing his part. He was a brilliant actor and playwright, and a very witty man. Gorman recognized the club's potential for theater, and it wasn't long before he proposed a theater production designed for our humble stage. He and fellow producer / actor KC staged a musical comedy, Bosom Buddies, which became the first in a string of performances featuring dozens of multi-talented actors, singers, choreographers, costume designers and musicians. Each show was written, directed and scored by the same performers who played the leading roles. They were comedic geniuses, and audiences loved them.

The Wizard of Odds

Jun 08, 2017
Written by: Dan Murano

Many of these images are scans of prints I made shortly after the March, along with some more recent scans of the negatives. Be sure to check out the gallery at the bottom of the page for a wider selection of images. (updated June 19, 2017.)

Disabled participants at the head of the march wait for the signal to start.Disabled participants at the head of the march wait for the signal to start.Spectators watch the march as it moves down Pennsylvania Avenue.Spectators watch the march from in front of the Old Post Office building on Pennsylvania Avenue.

 

Young men watch from a building overlooking the march route.A group of guys watch from a building overlooking the march route.

 

A rally on the National Mall followed the march.A rally on the National Mall followed the march.

 

Click through the gallery below for more images.