Monday, January 15, 2018

Saying thank you to Dil

When we began to research our EVE, me and Chris good made a time line. A time line of my life.

We stuck a big roll of paper to the rehearsal room wall, and began to make a timeline.

Or rather several timelines. We used post it notes in different colours to represent:

the external events in my life
the internal events that were decisive
the titles of the plays or stories I had written
the titles of plays or books or films or anything that wrote or spoke about being trans.

This last one was very sparse. In fact after panto, and two horrible films that portrayed me as evil or ridiculous or grotesque, there was nothing for years and years until I was in my forties and THE CRYING GAME came along.

We stuck the sticker on the wall and looked at the enormous empty spaces each side of it.

And I realised it really was the first time I had seen a representation of myself as a rounded and recognisable human being. Someone who was out to her lover and her friends and who was respected and loved.

And I realised I had never questioned that fact. It had never struck me as unusual or strange or wrong.

And it was, and is, certainly wrong. Everyone needs to see themself portrayed in literature or drama or art. Because otherwise it is very hard to reach a proper understanding of who we are.

That is something I seem to have dedicated my art to.

I wonder when I see the film tonight what I will make of the character of Dil. I expect there will be things I disagree with.

But I'm still grateful to her. As an artist she started me off on an important path; and she was the first to teach me that it was possible for me to live openly as a human being.

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