Saturday, 25 March 2017

Interview with Mya Byrne


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Mya Byrne, an award-winning songwriter, poet, actress, and trans/queer activist. She made her stage debut at NYC's Dixon Place in 2014. She’s played some of North America’s best music festivals, and her art has been featured in The Advocate, Time Out, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, MSNBC, and many other media. Hello Mya!
Mya: Hey there Monika! Thanks for having me.
Monika: You can boast so many talents. Which vocation do you regard as most appropriate for you?
Mya: When it all comes down to it, I’m a rock-and-roll poet to my core. I mean, that encompasses everything I do.
Monika: Is there anything like transgender art? What does it mean to be a transgender artist?
Mya: I don’t think there is anything that can be compared to transgender art. So much great art has come from trans people, and it’s beautiful to witness this being recognized -- from the music of Wendy Carlos, Ahnoni, Lynn Breedlove, Star Amerasu, and Laura Jane Grace to the celebrated writing of so many here on your website, the brilliant films of the Wachowskis, actress Mya Taylor, and all of the people before our time who might have been considered trans today -- especially in the Black lesbian and blues music scene pre-World War 2, and of course the countless people who were living openly as gender-variant in Weimar Germany. Lili Elbe was an artist and a muse, too, openly celebrated in her time.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Interview with Kenna Aloi


Monika: Today’s interview will be with Kenna Aloi, an American video blogger that documents her transition on YouTube in her vlog Kennas World. Hello Kenna!
Kenna: Hey Monika, I am so happy to be able to have this interview with you to be able to share my story on an other platform, thank you so much for reaching out to me, I really appreciate it!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Kenna: So as you know by now my name is Kenna Aloi, I am currently 22, and I am a hardworking millennial. I work 7 days a week and try to manage a YouTube channel on top of that and try to fit in some personal life as well.
Monika: Why did you decide to share your transition details on YouTube?
Kenna: I love doing update videos on my life, where I am at, what I am doing. It's like a online diary that I get to share with the world hoping that people can relate and maybe be able to help them from my personal experiences. I can also look back and see how far I came from leaving my digital mark on the world which will probably last forever.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Interview with Juli Grey-Owens


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Juli Grey-Owens, an American transgender rights activist. She regularly speaks at public forums about the need for statewide Transgender Civil Rights. Grey-Owens is the Executive Director of LITAC, the Long Island Transgender Advocacy Coalition; the founder and owner of Transgender Management Consulting, an organization which works to help organizations become transgender inclusive; and Board Co-Chair of TransPAC, New York’s first Political Action Committee. Hello Juli!
Juli: Hi Monika. Thanks for taking the time to speak with me.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Juli: I guess that I would say that I have had an amazing personal journey. I’m now in my early 60’s and as I look back at my life, I can see how it has continued to change and develop into something I could never have dreamed of. I know that I have been very lucky, and have been “privileged” in many ways.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Interview with Margaux Ayn Schaffer


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Margaux Ayn Schaffer, an American multi media artist, designer, and activist. Margaux has had a long history of activism, going back decades; in Atlanta, she was the editor and designer of INSIGHT, deputy director of AEGIS, and art director and associate editor of Chrysalis Quarterly. She participated both as a panelist and planning committee member for the Southern Comfort Conference.
When a series of murders of transgender women occurred in Atlanta, Margaux was appointed to the Mayor’s Gay and Lesbian Task Force. This led to an op-ed in The Advocate, “Do Transgender Issues Affect the Gay Community,” which she co-authored with Dallas Denny. She was also an invited guest on the Joan Rivers Show.
After moving from Atlanta to Phoenix, Margaux worked in Information Technology. She played a critical role in the first all transgender production of the Vagina Monologues, presented on V-Day 2004 in Hollywood’s Pacific Design Center. Margaux not only performed one of the monologues (“My Vagina Was My Village”), but she created the visual materials, including the posters, keepsake books, and postcards.

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