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Trans Media Arts — TV and Music!

| Sep 17, 2018
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Hello Everyone! Another month and it’s time for the Trans Media Arts column. Not much to speak of in the movies since the studios are dumping their trash and the scary movies for the season. Good ole’ September. Let us dig in.

Maines at Comic Con.

Continued big news in the form of Nicole Maines being the first transgender superhero on TV. The CW has just released the teaser trailer for the new Supergirl season and, yes, it’s official, trans activist and actress Nicole Maines appears as Dreamer. While we don’t get to see her in action yet, I am sure the season has many surprises in store. Supergirl, started on CBS, and was moved to the CW to be more in line with the other superhero shows like The Flash and Black Lightning. The upcoming season will chronicle how Nia Nal (played by Nicole Maines), with help and guidance from Kara Danvers (Melissa Benoist), turns from a young reporter at CatCo into the superhero we know as Dreamer. “Fear. No matter how much we believe in ourselves, that never really goes away,” Kara tells Nia in the trailer. “I think I’m not afraid of anything and then something chases me back down the rabbit hole. But once we catch ourselves, we have to jump right back out there.” Words we can all live by. Even Supergirl gets afraid. Supergirl returns to the CW on Sunday, October 14 at 8 p.m.

Felix Sheperd

The X Factor, a singing competition show, welcomed its most credible and important contestant yet, as transgender male Felix Shepherd to the stage, as he sang a very moving number. Felix was born Emily, but realized as a teen he needed be ‘who I am and I need to tell people.’ At a time when the trans community, particularly trans men, are near invisible when it comes to prime time television, Felix’s arrival couldn’t be more welcome and needed. ‘I’m from Birmingham, I’m currently studying a degree in song-writing and loving every second of it. I’m here to prove I’m more than just a transgender guy, and we can be overlooked. I live a normal life — I sleep in too late, I annoy my mum — I’m just an everyday sort of person.’ Of course, Felix’s voice changed from a falsetto to a lower pitch and he had to deal with that fact in his singing. “Literally, in February I had a falsetto and it disappeared.” Strong stuff, that testosterone. Let’s hope Felix does well.

Former Disney star J.J. Totah has come out as transgender. The 17-year-old shared her news and announced her new name as Josie. “When I was really young, growing up in a small town in Northern California, people would just assume I was gay,” she wrote. “On the playground, I was the type of kid who wanted to sing with the girls, not play soccer with the boys. Then I found myself playing that role once I got into the entertainment industry, and people kept assuming my identity. When I was five, long before I understood what the word gender meant, I would always tell my mother that I wished I were a girl,” she wrote. “Since I could speak in full sentences, I was like, “Give me a dress!” I always knew on some level that I was female. But it crystallized about three years ago when I was a 14-year-old watching the show I Am Jazz with my mother.” Sounds pretty together for a 17 year old. She plans to medically transition and is heading off to college. She plans to continue her career as well.

Laura Jane Grace

Big news from our own Laura Jane Grace, the First Lady of Punk and trans lead singer for her band Against Me! She pulled a fast one of sorts on fans as she formed another band called Laura Jane Grace and The Devouring Mothers. The album is called Bought to Rot. But rest assured, she is not quitting Against Me!, although, she did contemplate it at one point after the last album and tour. “ I just need to do this thing,” she said of this solo project. She formed this trio with Atom Willard, drummer, and engineer/mixer, Marc Jacob Hudson. Laura says of the record, “It doesn’t have to be anything. No one can comparatively be disappointed because it’s not like the last record or the record before that, or the record before that. Having that blank slate was really liberating.” Recorded at Hudson’s studio in rural Michigan, Bought to Rot contains a range of songs, from the tongue-in-cheek folk-rock post-divorce anthem I Hate Chicago to the Lemonheads-influenced Apocalypse Now (& Later) to the slow-burning rocker Valeria Golino, which Grace describes as her current “mission statement.”

Sticking with our music-heavy theme this month a “cis man-free” festival is under way in Sweden, as a response to the sexual offenses reported at events in 2017. It says it is the world’s first major music gathering for women, transgender and non-binary only. The idea was thought up by Swedish comedian Emma Knyckare after sexual offenses at Sweden’s biggest music festival Bravalla last year. “The whole area is free of cis-men,” Ms Knyckare said. “We work exclusively with women, non-binary and transgender persons. This ranges from artists to catering to security personnel.” But, they say no one will be questioned upon entrance, when they were asked how they will prevent cis men from entering.

A new exhibition at the Dorsky museum in New York highlights transgender people of note. Timothy Greenfield-Sanders: The Trans List, an exhibition of 40 photographs and a film, opens in September and runs through December 9 at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz. Curated by Anastasia James, the show features portraits by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders of celebrities such as Caitlyn Jenner and Laverne Cox, as well as trans people who are well known in the LGBTQ community, many of whom are activists. The List will also be coming to HBO on December 5.

That’s a wrap folks! See you next month.

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Category: Transgender Fun & Entertainment


About the Author ()

I am a transwoman originally from Pittsburgh, PA. I have been living full time for 5 years. I work in retail but am an artist/Graphic Designer and aspiring writer. I tend to address the controversial in my writing. I would love to change the world one article at a time. I moved to The San Francisco Bay Area to start over, again. But recently moved back to the East Coast. The adventure continues...

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