I am Tiara [the Merch Girl], an emerging performance artist and creative producer/production assistant based in Brisbane, Australia. I combine burlesque, circus, physical theatre, stagecraft, spoken word, improv, comedy, and various other means to tell stories about personal experiences and political issues. I'm passionate about diversity and representation, especially as a multiple minority - queer, female, cultural minority, migrant. Besides performing I also write a great deal (mostly online), co-present feminist radio show 4zzz Megaherzzz, and have presented on Australian television. Basically: If it looks interesting I sign up for it!
I have been (re)accepted for a residency with CELLspace from mid-June to mid-September, moving the dates up to accommodate. This Is What I Want, a 2-day event in late June as part of the 2011 National Queer Arts Festival. I sent in an application and will be basing my 3 months from there.
I've been in touch with a good deal of other organisations and performers around San Francisco and the Bay Area and some are interested in meeting up or having me volunteer. There's probably enough for 3 years worth! I'll know about CELLspace after February 9th and This Is What I Want after March so hopefully by then the plan would be more concrete.
I have not heard many stories about being queer and in a minority that I could relate to. While I love performance art and burlesque, and admire queer performers who celebrate their sexuality and bodies in all their oddball glory, I didn't see many that came from a background like mine or who even looked like me. I grew up with very different ideas of sexuality, love, relationships, and the body compared to my peers and friends, and sometimes have a hard time reconciling my heritage and background with my current experiences and values.
Discussions and projects with other friends - especially other activists and performers - have brought up their experiences of not quite being able to relate, of being marginalised even in supposedly more "liberal" areas, of trying to navigate oft-conflicting values, perspectives, and ideas. My performance work and writing has connected me with others who thank me for sharing my voice, for adding another view to the community, for representing a side that often goes unheard.
Through this residency and this project I aim to come up with a number of performance pieces (and possibly work in other mediums, such as photography) that explore the issues I bring up, as well as some presentations of my work and learnings. I also aim to contribute as much knowledge, energy, and manpower as I can to my internships and volunteer projects, including building links between San Francisco, Brisbane, and other related networks around the world.
What I Need & What You Get
I need at least $5000 to make this possible:
$2000 for airfare from Brisbane to San Francisco
$1950 ($650*3) for residency fees
$1050 for other living costs.
Spread the word! The more people who know about this project the better. There are various share tools available - make use of Facebook, Twitter, email, or any other preferred social network.
Do you have frequent flyer miles? I have accounts with Qantas, Virgin (Velocity), and Malaysia Airlines (Enrich). A miles donation would greatly help in offsetting some of the costs of airfare.
Do you work in the media? Are you a blogger, news reporter, feature writer, TV producer, radio host? Feature me and my project!
Are you part of a company or organisation that can sponsor me? I'm happy to discuss sponsorship & advertising terms.
Feel free to get in touch and let's make this happen!