Fulton County Honors a Poet and Activist Who Fought for Atlanta’s Black LGBTQ Lives

Archive Photo of The Adodi Muse: A Gay Negro Ensemble (Left to Right Tony Daniels, Duncan E. Teague & Malik M.L. Williams)

Archive Photo of The Adodi Muse: A Gay Negro Ensemble (Left to Right Tony Daniels, Duncan E. Teague & Malik M.L. Williams)

Contact: Charles Stephens
Email: charles.stephens@counternarrative.org

February 14, 2019 – Atlanta, GA – The Fulton County Board of Commissioners will deliver a proclamation honoring the legacy of a Black gay poet, HIV activist, and cultural pioneer who made both Black and American history, Atlanta’s own Tony Daniels. The proclamation will be presented during the February 20th Fulton County Board of Commissioner’s Recess Meeting at 10 am, in the Fulton County Government Center Assembly Hall located at 141 Pryor Street SW in Atlanta, GA. The proclamation is expected to officially be delivered by District 4 County Commissioner Natalie Hall of Atlanta.

A co-founder of Adodi Muse: A Gay Negro Ensemble, a touring theatrical troupe, Daniels tragically died in a car accident in 1998 at the tender age of 33, but not before leaving an indelible mark on the state’s cultural and political scene through the work of Adodi Muse, as a culture creator, a presciently outspoken HIV activist, and a dearly beloved son of the South. Mr. Daniels’ artistic and political legacy was recently explored through Tony Daniels: Architect of the Black Gay Mecca, a curated program hosted by the Counter Narrative Project and the Auburn Avenue Library earlier this month to commemorate National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Twenty-one years after his untimely death, Daniels’ troupe still performs, educating and enlightening audiences about racial justice, social inequality, and the powerful stories of Black LGBTQ folk living and loving in the South.

“It is through Tony Daniels’ fearless example as a black gay man living with HIV, and the barrier-breaking of groups like Adodi Muse that organizations like the Counter Narrative Project can exist today,” said Charles Stephens, Executive Director of CNP. “It’s for that reason and so much more that we pay homage to trailblazers like Daniels and are thrilled to see him take his proper place among the Black history canon of Georgia through significant public acknowledgments such as these as well as the new archives of him and his work residing at the Auburn Avenue Research Library. These are just some of the ways we as a society can institutionalize the legacies of deserving Black gay men who laid a foundation for many in our community to build from.”

To learn more about Daniels and Adodi Muse: A Gay Negro Ensemble, visit the Tony Daniels Papers, managed by Archives Division Manager, Derek T. Mosley at the Auburn Avenue Research Library. The collection includes personal papers, Daniels’ works, encompassing personal journals, as well as the records of ADODI Muse on display, highlighting Daniels and fellow members contributions to the arts, Black History, and LGBTQ movement history.