The Austin Babtist [sic] Women, Austin, Texas' drag comedians, are the hostesses of the Dec. 17 benefit performance and auction for the city's HIV Wellness Center at the Rainbow Cattle Company. The Women (known by their stage names Ethyl Mae Studebaker, Ima Spinster, Ophelia Faith, The Widow Modine, and Trudy Duty) will perform at 9 PM with Margaret Wright and the Kingdom Seekers Choir, jugglers the Flaming Idiots, Joe York (The Pleasure of His Company), comedian Steven J. Crabtree and others. Admission is free, but bidding is hoped for.
Bits of Broadway on the block include items from Elizabeth Taylor, soon to-be musical theatre composer Harry Conick, Jr., Carol Channing, Bernadette Peters, a playscript of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? autographed by Edward Albee, autographed playbills from True West and Annie Get Your Gun, an "Annie" photo signed by Kathy Bates from the Disney TV production and a set of boxers signed by the cast and director of The Full Monty . Autographed posters will also be offered from Electra, Bring in Da Noise, Bring in Da Funk, Ragtime, Fosse and Footloose, among others.
Since they've begun fundraising in Texas and across the United States in 1986, the southern sisters have raised over $4.5 million for AIDS and breast cancer charities. Upcoming dates include planned visits to Dallas, San Antonio and New York City.
The Rainbow Cattle Company is located at 305 5th Street. Bidding on items can also be done over the internet by visiting the Women's website at http://abw.homepage.com.
-- By Christine Ehren