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Comment: A safe space to dance for transgender youth

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  1. Thank God there are good people out there who want to make a safe place for transgender youth today. This is good news and we need more people like this to help make life safe for transgender youth.

    1. Rachel Sparks 14 Jun 2012, 9:35pm

      Hi Malcolm, thank you for your comment! Gendered Intelligence hold a monthly youth group and have a number of projects for Trans and Queer youth across the year. We aim to build further priojects on the theme of dance and expression in the future as well. Keep up to date by visiting our website and ‘like’ us on facebook!

  2. What a wonderful concept,Rachel, Thank you! I have been in performing arts since I was a child and dancing is one of my favorite art forms. “The music and rhythm does get you!” It indeed keeps you fit and is a great stress reliever in our overly anxious world!

  3. I wish I could learn to dance, but I cannot go to regular classes as I wish to learn to lead, and women are not supposed to do that.

    1. Rachel Sparks 14 Jun 2012, 9:40pm

      Thankfully there are a number of classes becoming available to people who want to transend the usual gender roles in dance. It depends where you live but there are Queer Tango classes (you don’t have to be queer by the way) there are also same-gender dance classes – both of which are all about teaching anyone to lead or follow no matter their gender. It’s great fun! Maybe have a search to see if there are any classes in your area!

  4. A bit late commenting on this but I hope you are still following the thread Rachel.
    Its a funny situation, outsiders/non Dancers might presume Dance Classes would be some sort of paradise/safe space for trans youth. Speaking as a now retired Dancer (mid 30s….lol) I look back on my own Dance classes with mixed emotions. On the one hand,yes,it was natural for me to be there,Id wanted to Dance as long as I can remember but on the other hand,being constantly reminded that I was a *boy* either in the literal sense of being told to dance in a different,stronger style to everyone else in the class or in the more subtle sense of being surrounded by girls in figure hugging lycra was a bit of a nightmare. One of the only *good points* ,and no pun intended,was not having to learn the torture that is en pointe :)

    1. Rachel Sparks 9 Aug 2012, 1:00pm

      Hi Eydis, great to hear your perspective and experience of dance classes. The funny thing is that in my Latin and Ballroom classes there were no boys so from quite young I was dancing the ‘male’ role with a female partner. I was taller than average and had a strong grasp of the dances so it was seen as a good thing to be able to dance ‘boy’. And talking to my dance teacher now he talks about the benefits of learning the ‘male’ and ‘female’ role in understanding the mechanics etc. However, I wonder how the dance school would feel if a boy came to learn and wanted to dance the ‘female’ role…. The gender stereotype of men must be strong and powerful and women must be beautiful, flowing and delicate is so ingrained in our society in virtually every setting. This stereotyping only restricts us and hinders full expression of the body, I hope that our project will in some way rock the boat and wake the dance community up to the inequalities and need for inclusion!

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