Performer, musician, composer, presenter, writer, mother, teacher and ‘Old Black Dyke,’ Gaye Adegbalola, is coming back to Richmond this Friday for the VMFA’s First Friday, and she’s brought some friends.
Adegbalola has been touring on her own for some time – we profiled her earlier this year and she detailed her history with activism, and the nature of her controversial touring performance “Old Black Dyke:”
Activism has always been a central part of Adegbalola’s life: she was involved with the Black Power movement, participated in sit-ins, picketed in the 60′s, protested against the war in Vietnam, and, as she’s grown into her acceptance of being a lesbian, she’s also been fighting for gay rights. Growing up in the Civil Rights Era, Adegbalola faced oppression not only for being black, but also for being gay, being a single parent, being a woman, and now for being an old person.
“I want us to be ok with who we are. We have to embrace and love ourselves before we can love anybody else,” she says. Old Black Dyke provides a necessary and important voice for underrepresented groups. “When you think about television today, how many shows feature old people?” Adegbalola asks, “Very few. And of those, how many feature old black people? Very, very few. How many feature old black dykes—or old dykes of any color? None. So I think we have something valid to offer the world.”
Check out a video of Adegbalola and the Wild Rutz below, and see them Friday at VIRGINIA MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS’ Cochrane Atrium - 200 North Boulevard from 6 to 8 p.m.