Saturday’s Transgender Prom set to put trans* Richmonders front and center
“This event is so much what prom should’ve been like in high school, where it doesn’t matter if you’re popular, you can dress how you wanted to dress, date who you wanted to date, and everyone can just have a really great time” said Natalie Colleen Gates, organizer of the Richmond Transgender Prom.
The 2015 Richmond Transgender Prom will be this Saturday at 9 PM, at Diversity Richmond (formerly GCCR).
Hosted by Natalie Colleen Gates, the annual event will provide a safe space for LGBTQ people and allies to relive their prom experience.
Gates said the prom is for anyone who identifies in any way as trans* and for anyone who supports trans* identities. Above all, the festive atmosphere of the event will serve to provide a safe, non-judgemental, and fun space for trans* people and their allies to meet and make friends.
In true prom fashion, the event will feature an “adventure in the galaxy” theme and a prom court, with a crowned prom king, queen, and gender-neutral prom monarch. To complete the event, the prom will feature music from DJ Connie Sue from Animal RVA and opening DJ Brendan Hall of Fat Spirit.
The Transgender Prom began last year as a fundraiser, with this year’s event having a heavy community focus.
“For the trans* community, there’s so few events that are trans* centered, and the TG prom isn’t exclusively for trans* people but I think of it as more of a TLGB event with more of a trans* focus,” said Gates. “I’m trying to provide a warm inviting environment, because so often trans people are overshadowed by LGB, and just putting the T first it seems like there’s just more of an equal chance for an non-judgemental environment.”
With the Transgender Prom, Gates seeks to promote a culture that acknowledges and accepts all forms of trans* identities without hierarchy or judgement. The event supports the right of trans* people to determine their own needs, and seeks to build a space that showcases trans* talent and performers who, according to Gates, have far too often been overshadowed or represented by drag performances within the LGBT community.
More than anything, the Transgender Prom will seek to promote a visible trans* community so that trans* identities may stop being a source of stigma and shame, and provide a safe environment that will disprove any dangerous stereotypes that some people may have coming into the event, and attract more allies and supporters to trans* causes.
Tickets are available for purchase at Diversity Thrift, Babes, or online here for $10, or at the door for $15.
The event is 21+ and will feature a wine and beer cash bar. Hors d’oeuvres included with ticket purchase.
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