100 Women We Love 2015

We are thrilled to present this year’s 100 Women We Love—an incredibly diverse group of out entertainers, athletes, artists, activists, business leaders and elected officials.


If you´ve ever joined the NYC Dyke March in the past few years, you´ve grooved down Fifth Avenue to the pulsing rhythms of BatalaNYC, the only all-female Afro-Brazilian samba reggae drum orchestra in the northeast U.S.-they´re the women in matching t-shirts pounding dobras, surdos and other instruments. Artistic director Stacy Kovacs, a veteran of the Lesbian and Gay Big Apple Corps and the Rude Mechanical Orchestra, founded the New York chapter of Batala after seeing a performance of Batala Mundo, a global musical project. She flew to Brazil and came back with 35 large drums for her nascent marching ensemble. In the ensuing three years, BatalaNYC has performed in more than 100 festivals, parades, events, shows and parties, including as the opening drummers for the Rolling Stones´ 50th anniversary tour in 2012. Kovacs welcomes all female-identified people, regardless of musical skill level, for an empowering education in Brazilian music. “The dancing and the drumming and the fact that it´s all women adds a feminine element to something that is so traditionally male,” Kovacs told a Brazilian music blog in 2012. She formed deep friendships with many of the players-“friendships I know will last a lifetime. It´s an honor to stand in front of them. The looks and smiles on their faces say everything-it´s incredible!” -KL

What Do You Think?