Southern Time was a dream I wanted to be realized not long after testing positive for myself and the world, to live in peace, prosperity, and harmony, for all. At age twenty, as a relatively-privileged Westerner, overnight I experienced destitution and despair. Though I may not have had much time to live, let alone ever be loved again, I wanted my life to make a difference, to mean something.
I started writing songs and eventually wrote a rock opera, telling how I acquired HIV, and what living with it has been like. I produced a multi-media stage production in 2005, in Vancouver, and have since been aspiring to make it in its intended form ~ a cinematic docu-drama ~ which has taken the form of a trilogy.
This has led to many iterations and failed attempts, relative to the first production, but the stars weren’t aligned until this year. The problem was, I was trying to do it all on my own. But I now have a team. Southern Time isn’t about me, it’s about our world, and about everyone who unduly suffers.
And, it’s about people living with HIV. I read a book once saying that ‘HIV was sent to humanity to teach us how to love’. I agree. It’s a story that has the power to change our world. But, how that story turns out, how compassionately we all learn to live and love, will determine what kind of world we leave our children.
Half of the rock opera’s band members are HIV positive, and by displaying our stories and songs to the world, we will demonstrate that people living with HIV are not victims, are not criminals, that we are capable, responsible, and living life to the fullest.
Southern Time Team Members: