There is so much in this episode it's best to share the topics covered:
Beyonce, Barbara Streisand, Nicki Minaj, Missy Elliott, Queen Latifah, iconography, what makes an icon?, Peter Frechette, theatre, writing, playwriting, inclusion, BIPOC, LGBTQIA plus representation in theatre and film, tropes, writing hacks that use marginalized characters as devices to make white, cisgender, heteronormative characters more interesting or forgivable, being ones authentic self, why gay people can play straight but straight people shouldn't play gay, BIPOC and LGBTQIA plus supporting characters who we want to see with their own shows, agency, what we will no longer do as artists, advice to writers who want to write for characters from marginalized groups and the future of theatre. Tania and Mitchell also discuss a play they both were in where the gay and Black characters are misused and misrepresented, plus in a moment of healing, Tania shares for the first time an experience she had doing a play that was full of micro-aggressions that created a hostile work environment. This whole discussion serves as a cautionary tale for storytellers across all genres moving forward.
Mitchell J. Fain is an actor and activist with 30 years of experience in theatre, improvisation, circus performance and teaching. He is the cohost of The Queer View with Alexandra Billings. His credits include The Santa Land Diaries, The Red Line, Into the Breeches, Midnight Circus and more.
Here are a few quotes from the episode:
"We are not tropes and our lives are huge...Just because you're not invited to the gay club or barbecue doesn't mean it doesn't happen." Mitchell J. Fain
"Don't desex me. Sex isn't just about sex. Since sex is the one thing that everyone thinks separates queer people from straight people, then you don't get to take it away from me. Don't take away the fullness of an existence." Mitchell J. Fain
"You don't get to control my narrative." Tania Richard
"I will only show up as my full, authentic self." Tania Richard
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The Queer View with Mitchell J. Fain and Alexandra Billings