Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-11-27
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

The Kling's the thing: Trans performer talks
by Sarah Terez Rosenblum
2009-12-09

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Eloquent and animated, performer Rebecca Kling clearly enjoys discussing her work. "Trans Form combines spoken word and multimedia," she says, sipping tea at Starbucks, "it's the second show I've written outside of school." Chatting about Trans Form's inspiration, as well as theater as a vehicle for social change, Rebecca's passion for theater grows increasingly evident; it's creation surely integral to her sense of self.

Windy City Times: What was the impetus for your new show?

Rebecca Kling: Trans Form came out of the work I did at the Charged Bodies Mentorship Program, which itself came out of a weeklong workshop at Links Hall where I sort of stumbled on the idea of transitioning as this mythic process of defying gods and defying fate and defying convention. When I was fortunate enough to get the Critical Fierceness Grant through Chances Dances in Chicago this past year to expand the piece, I realized I wanted to delve into the mundane or the personal or the everyday, keeping components of the piece I worked on last year, but also expanding upon it and trying to process where I'm coming from, where I'm going and what the hell I'm doing.

WCT: Describe your writing background.

RK: My writing background comes from performance art at Northwestern and from years of being a student and a teacher at the Piven Theatre workshop in Evanston. I also have a blog. After coming out to a friend, she said "you know, this is something you really need to be writing about, because fifty years from now, you're gonna wanna be able to look back and see where you were coming from," so that was my original impetus. I'm sort of embarrassed that I have a blog. I'm not yet able to claim...

WCT: Blog pride?

RK: Yeah, blog pride. But I do have one, and a lot of the material in this show comes from that. I tried to start writing a couple times a week, and that's been a really positive experience both personally, being able to share with this online community, and in terms of the piece. I've been able to pull things like, going to the Daly Center to get my name changed, having issues with doctors, transitioning at work. Writing about it and coming back and going, "ok, this is how I was feeling at this time, and this is what can be extracted that can be useful or interesting onstage," has been really helpful.

WCT: You're writing about loaded issues. Do you feel safe putting such personal material onstage?

RK: I'm spoiled in that I'm coming from a community of family, friends and coworkers that has been extremely supportive of my transitioning and my identity. They've known me, in many cases, since before I transitioned, and so shouldn't be surprised that I'm trans or that I'm an artist or that I'm sharing these things onstage. That's made it both easier, but at the same time somewhat harder. For example, writing about when I was a child and knowing my parents are coming to the show, I had to suppress the desire to hide things. I had to make a conscious choice that this is the narrative of myself I want to share, and if my parents or roommates or coworkers see it, they are going to see that part of me.

WCT: Who is your ideal audience?

RK: I have two. First, I want people who are queer or trans or somehow feel they don't fit into mainstream gender and sexuality to be able to see a performance about something that isn't talked about often. Just this afternoon, I sent out postcards to thirty gay/straight alliances around the city, because I vividly remember how much I would have liked to see something like this when I was in high school. At the time, being trans was [ seen as ] something much older people dealt with, so the idea that as a young adult, that could be part of my identity wasn't presented to me as a real option. So, I want to share my story in that way, to sort of lead by example. [ Second, ] I think the division that sometimes happens between alternative and mainstream theater is counterproductive. I'm conscious that most of the artistic community in the professional theater world is certainly very liberal and very accepting, but I've also got a lot of fear that being trans or just outside the normal ideas of sexuality or gender relegates you to this [ lesser ] section of theater. I want artistic peers of mine to be able to share something that not only is very personally and politically validating for me, but is also artistically sound. It's been powerful to have artistic peers who are not queer say, "this component is beautiful because it speaks to the larger human experience, and this component could be tweaked to get there."

WCT: What can theater do in terms of social change?

RK: I think theater can do everything. I feel really strongly that the act of storytelling is the most effective way to cross any sort of border between people. The very first thing we do when we start talking is share our stories. One of the most primal experiences is retelling something that happened. Theater as an expansion of storytelling, which I think, is integral in any sort of social change. The way to become human to someone is to have them understand your story, your history, your complexity. Theater is certainly not the only way to accomplish that, but I think it's one of the most powerful.

Rebecca Kling's show, Trans Form, runs Dec. 11-12 at 8 p.m., and Dec. 13 at 7 p.m at Links Hall, 3435 N. Sheffield. To purchase tickets visit linkshall.org . To learn more about Rebecca Kling go to fridaythang.com/trans-form.


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Submit an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.