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New York Actor to Discuss Gay Culture

David Lata, actor and producer, will lecture on gay culture in the media as well as perform a work about one boy’s struggle of growing up in the church and spending a summer in conversion therapy on Thursday, April 30.

The lecture, “A Brief History of Gay Culture,” will begin at 2:50 p.m. in SUNY Cortland’s Sperry Center, Room 104.   

The performance, “MY LIFE IN THE GREY: Memoirs of a Journey over the Rainbow,” begins at 7 p.m. at the Interfaith Center, 7 Calvert St., Cortland.

Both programs are a part of the College’s Louis Larson Lecture and Performance Series and are free and open to the public. The ongoing series is intended to educate and support individuals in the campus and local LGBT communities and their allies.

Lata, a past Cortland resident, has appeared on stage at SUNY Cortland, Cortland Repertory Theatre and throughout Manhattan.

In 2008, he moved to New York City, where he attended a conservatory for musical theatre.

Recently, Lata became a restaurateur with his father, opening up a diner in Jamestown, N.Y., while working for MINI Cooper in Manhattan.

He currently lives with his fiancé in Queens, N.Y., and is in production on an independent feature documenting his life story and gay culture.

Future lectures — geared to help foster and promote diversity and mutual respect — will include guest speakers, panel talks and performances from professionals in the LGBT community.

The series is sponsored by the LGBTQIA Faculty Staff Committee, campus Center for Gender and Intercultural Studies, Cortland LGBT Resource Center, Interfaith Center, Alumni Engagement, Spectrum, PFLAG, Auxiliary Services Corporation, Health Promotion/Student Development and the Multicultural Life and Diversity Office.

The series honors Larson, who served SUNY Cortland’s Career Services for 23 years and retired in 2010. In June of that year, he was honored with the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service, recognizing his extensive record of professional service to the institution and beyond.

For more information, contact Vicki Wilkins, SUNY Cortland professor of recreation, parks and leisure studies, at 607-753-4972; or Catherine Smith at 607-753-2066.

Prepared by public relations intern Kate Monno