It’s been a few months since I updated this blog so I figured it was time to give an update.
The last few months have been very busy with starting the Seattle Trans and Nonbinary Choral Ensemble (STANCE) and getting it up and running. We have auditions this week and I’m very excited to say that we hit my goal of 50 signups! After 5 years of dreaming and scheming, it is so exciting to finally see this coming together. If you want to get in for an audition slot last minute, there still a few calendar times open. Signup at www.stanceseattle.org/join_us.
The biggest hurdle so far has been getting funding. We got a great early grant from Seattle Pride and individual donors have really stepped up to raise $2,500 so far. But to really make this successful and sustainable we really need to win a bigger grant to fund the Artistic Director’s salary. I already got turned down for one of my hopeful opportunities but I’m waiting to hear back soon from the largest potential grant I’ve found so far. Fingers crossed that we get the money soon.
We did find a lovely church to host us. It hits all of our requirements in terms of accessibility and inclusivity and it was even less expensive that I was expecting to have to pay. Unfortunately the only night that both the church and our Director were available is the same night as my former choir, Puget Soundworks. I hate to compete with them but I have also been really disappointed in their lack of trans inclusivity lately. They don’t have any trans board members (I applied and was turned down) and when TERFs outed themselves in the community a couple years ago, it took them over a year to deal with the problem.
That’s part of what gave me the impetuous to finally make this choir happen. I believe strongly that there should be no communities that claim trans inclusivity without having trans people in leadership long term. Nothing about us without us.
To make a long story short, I’m so happy to finally be fulfilling my long time dream of making Seattle’s first chorus by and for trans and nonbinary people. No journey is without its hurdles but I think that I’m able to take those in stride and push through challenges much better now than I was a few years ago. I’m grateful to finally have the brain space to do things like this now that I have pretty fully transitioned. Not having to fight daily with dysphoria really gives me a lot more capacity.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me along the way. I couldn’t do this without you!