When experimental directors Anne Bogart and, later, Theodora Skipitares invited me to collaborate at the University of Iowa, I discovered theatre’s social-political power. Both artists encouraged me to channel my rage at Queer-phobia into performance, spiced with a touch of camp.
My first job in NYC was as a pre-school teacher. We taught learning through experimenting. Want to make pancakes? Imagine a recipe.
So, after collecting research, I quickly workshop with the audience as co-creators. I have to sense what’s working. I create to discover. (Photography was a happy accident.)
At that time, I was a club-kid, a Jackie 60 performance artist, every night was a Matthew Barney film, and transgender actor Kate Bornstein was in my play. Kate told me about being a “Gender Outlaw” and that empowerment to invent perception and push through the rejection.
From New York, performance artist Paulo Henrique invited me to Portugal. Influenced by Pina Bausch, Jérôme Bel, and Paulo’s love of gadgets, we mixed dance, technology, and poetry into a journey. The stage frames our body language reacting through comedy and drama to our societal angst. I believe that collective hurt moves through all. Gathering through live art is our medicine.
Recently in Slumming It, I combine my historical play about Queer brothels with a modern non-binary cabaret. Showing those connections strengthens inclusivity and well-being.
I repeat Queering culture when sharing in Washington D.C. performance soirees.
That ethos continues in collaborating with DC-based choreographer Mathew Cumbie, Portuguese composer Rita Abranches, and Puerto Rican visual artist J. Carlos Díaz on my Gender-fluid fairy tale, Flower Child.
My theatre is a gathering to dance around the fire. I build shows by doing, playing, and getting messy. I look at performances like a living painting rather than something mapped out. The imperfections are accidents in a laboratory where epiphanies happen—explosions from the New Queer Awakening.