TransTainment 3/20/23

| Mar 20, 2023
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The GOP’s enemy.

In its scramble to keep Republicans in control at state legislatures and governors offices the GOP has turned to stoking the average conservative voters fear of the unknown. Their anti-trans legislation, which will certainly do harm to trans youth, is also being leveled against drag performers. At a time when RuPaul is the most well-known queen in the country with many seasons of Drag Race under her rhinestone belt GOP legislators want voters to believe there is some hidden sexual agenda to Drag Queen Story Time. Oh no! Protect the children! That would be important if drag queens posed any threat to children—or anyone. (Other than sometimes painful attempts at lip syncing.) Tennessee thinks it’s important to ban drag performances but did it in such a nonspecific manner that productions of shows like Some Like It Hot and Kinky Boots may be barred from presentation in the state.

Actor’s Equity Association has released a statement about the bill and you can read it in the March 16 Playbill.

TikTok star Dylan Mulvaney was a guest on Drew Barrymore’s daytime talk show this past Monday. Dylan asked Drew what she did to deal with attacks by online critics and the two traded techniques for dealing with the haters.

20,000 Species of Bees is a film about a 9-year-old boy who considers herself a girl. The director made an odd choice in casting the lead; she picked an 8-year-old cisgender girl for the part —Sofia Otero.  Otero did a good job in the role, picking up the best acting award at the Berlin International Film Festival.

Sofia Otero

When asked why she chose a cisgender girl to play a trans girl the director, Estibaliz Urresola Solaguren, said it was important that the character be portrayed by a girl saying, “It is easier for her. She’s a really intelligent girl.” The film won praise for its treatment of the subject and Otero’s performance was called “deeply moving.” Would it have been better with a trans girl in the part? There’s no way to assess that since we can’t compare Otero’s performance to that of a trans girl. At least the film treats the subject matter with respect. Maybe the director will consider casting a trans person for their next transgender focused project.

Jamie Lee Curtis won the Best Supporting Actress award for her work in Everything Everywhere All at Once. In honor of her transgender daughter, Ruby, Curtis will use they/them when referring to her Oscar. Learn more about her support for trans people from Unilad.

Singer Lizzo is another supporter and ally for trans people. The passage of the Tennessee anti-trans legislation pushed her to post anti-anti-trans messages on Twitter. Follow her posts on the UpRoxx website.

Today (March 20, 2023) some of the top names in Country and Americana music will show their support of transgender people in reaction to the legislation in Tennessee. Allison Russell, Mya Byrne, and Brothers Osborne will join Sheryl Crow, Hozier, Jason Isbell, Maren Morris, and others by performing in Love Rising: Let Freedom Sing (and Dance) A Celebration of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness: Let Freedom Sing (and Dance) A Celebration of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Learn more from the Advocate.

Legendary female impersonator and the last living performer at Finocchio’s club in San Francisco, David de Alba, is excited about his return to the stage at a Las Vegas venue. We could go on about his enthusiasm for the upcoming show but we’ll let David tell you all about it himself.

The Queen of Ireland is drag performer and trans activist Panti Bliss. In addition to her work as an “accidental activist” Bliss is appearing in the current season of Ireland’s Dancing with the Stars. In the first week she and her dance partner closed out the competition performing a cha-cha-cha to Whitney Houston’s I Wanna Dance with Somebody which earned an impressive 23/30 points. Bliss is thrilled to be on the show which is seen in homes across the nation. Her hope is that young people, isolated in rural areas as she was, who are drawn to transgender identities, and those who feel the need to glam up and lip sync for their lives, will be encouraged seeing her performing on the show. Learn more about Panti Bliss from the Advocate.

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About the Author ()

Angela Gardner is a founding member of The Renaissance Transgender Assoc., Inc., former editor of its newsletter and magazine, Transgender Community News. She was the Diva of Dish for TGF in the late 1990s and Editor of LadyLike magazine until its untimely demise. She has appeared in film and television shows portraying TG characters, as well as representing Renaissance on numerous talk shows.

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