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PAYASOS: LEATHER, LAUGHTER, AND LATINO IN L.A. (Leather Alliance Weekend 2016)

  • Center for Sex and Culture 1349 Mission Street San Francisco, ca (map)


LDG is producing educational programming for Leather Alliance Weekend 2016. Speaking with the Payasos is a program which Patrick Mulcahey has been hoping to produce for years. He retired as LDG's program director in 2015, but we are excited he came back for this program. This program will require purchase of a $12 ticket which helps fund the Leather Alliance Weekend.

Those of us living in what was once called Alta California tend to forget that until 1848, we were a territory of Mexico. In fact, California was under Spanish and Mexican control twice as along as it has been one of the United States (which you would expect to blur our perspective on who the “unauthorized aliens” are).

But even in California, despite the ubiquity of porn sites like and gay icons like Ricky Martin, there was no visible, culturally Latino presence in the leather community before this decade. That such a presence not only exists now but has been enlarged and embraced is owing in no small part to a group of Southern California men equally comfortable in clown make-up and leather jockstraps, working tirelessly to support gay, leather, children’s and Latino community causes — and to have beautifully sexy, proud, fun, committed leather lives.

Join us for a conversation with four of these hot amazing men about their histories, accomplishments, mission, how they work and how they play, moderated by Patrick Mulcahey

LEO IRIARTE founded Payasos-L.A. in 2010. The very next year, seven of the nine contestants for Mr Los Angeles Leather were Latino, and Leo (competing as Mr Regiment 2011) became the first Latino to take home the title. Leo is a member of the Regiment of the Black & Tans, a Los Angeles men’s uniform club, and is also founder of Brothers In Need, for the support of community members in difficult times.

ESTEBAN BARTHOLO, Mr Bullet Leather 2015, has received multiple Southland honors for community service. Alongside his roles with Payasos, Brothers In Need, and the Black & Tans, he is co-producer of “Clown Fucker” with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, and active with OUTfest, the Tom of Finland Foundation, California Men who Enjoy Nudism (CMEN), Bienestar/Fuerza Positiva, AIDS Project L.A., and Autism Walk/Autism Speaks. Originally from Medellin, Colombia, he is famous for his nude desert hikes, and loves wax play, water sports, bondage, piercing, CBT, dancing, and Burning Man.

FERNANDO BUENROSTRO moved to the U.S. from Mexico in 2008, at the age of 19. His introduction to the Payasos came in 2013, when Esteban Bartholo responded to his social media post about wanting to make a real contribution to Los Angeles community life despite being an undocumented resident. Attracted to leather since boyhood, Fernando wore a leather harness for the first time at Los Angeles Leather Pride that year and has never looked back.


JUSTIN TATE EMERICK, a.k.a. Payaso Chipa Guazu, began his career with the Peace Corps in Paraguay as a Rural Health Volunteer. An LGBT activist from an early age — he is a proud gay Eagle Scout — he founded an anti-Proposition 8 organization called Roots of Equality and produced an interactive event on L.A.’s pre-Stonewall LGBT history. Justin is a friend of Avatar-L.A., enjoying bondage, flogging, and exploring new kinks. He was Mr Regiment 2013, Mr Los Angeles Leather 2013, and is Community Outreach Coordinator for the U.S. Department of Labor.

PATRICK MULCAHEY (Moderator) speaks and writes on leather, SM, and Master/slave topics. He is past program director of the S.F. Leathermen’s Discussion Group and currently serves on the board of Butchmanns Inc. He was proud to be named the Leather Alliance’s 2011 Man of the Year and to receive the 2013 Leatherman’s Heart Award and the National Leather Association’s 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award.