Transgender Day of Remembrance Across the State

By Sunnivie Brydum, Guest Blogger

We’ve been working to highlight the transgender community this November, which we’ve declared Transgender Awareness Month. While we revel in the opportunity to share news, resources, and success stories, there’s no avoiding the tragic truth that trans people are the most at-risk segment of the LGBT population when it comes to violence, discrimination, and harassment.

In an effort to pay homage to those lives lost to transphobia (and the misogyny and homophobia inherent in that), the annual international Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) seeks to bring to light the names, faces, and stories of those killed due to anti-transgender bias. Around the world, trans people and their friends, family, and allies hold vigils to honor the dead and express love and solidarity in the face of hatred and ignorance.

Throughout the state, Colorado’s LGBT community is joining together to host TDOR events memorializing our transgender brethren. Keep reading to find your community’s event, then show up in support and solidarity, and help put an end to violence against transgender people.

  • Out Boulder is hosting a series of events throughout the week to commemorate Transgender Awareness Week. Out Boulder will be present at the GIC’s Celebration of Life, in addition to offering support groups, film screenings, and panel discussions. Click here to check out all Out Boulder has in store.
  • Bent Lens Cinema will be screening two trans-based films at the Boedecker Theater at the Dairy Center for the Arts in Boulder, in collaboration with Out Boulder’s Transgender Awareness Week. All tickets are $9, or $7 for students, seniors, and children:
  1. Tomboy screens on Friday, Nov. 18 at 6:30 pm. When 10 year old Mikael (beautifully played by Zoé Héran) moves to a new neighborhood with his younger sister and parents, he’s shy about getting to know the new kids before school starts in the fall. Over the course of the summer, he befriends and plays with the local children. One girl, Lisa (Jeanne Disson), likes him. Eventually, Lisa comes to Mikael’s house and meets his younger sister, Jeanne…who plays along with some game she’s not sure of: Mikael is the sister she knows as Laure. Eventually, Mikael’s effort to live as himself is foiled when his mother finds out, and she insists he reveal himself before school starts. Despite the agony that transpires, the children overcome their surprise; even Lisa still wants to know Laure and be his friend. If you ever wished you could start over as a kid and be the person you really are, this film’s beautiful portrayal will give you hope for the future.
  2. Strella (also known as A Woman’s Way), screens at the Dairy at 8:30 pm on Friday, immediately following Tomboy. Greek director Panos Koutras, opened (and stunned) the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival with his tender and provocative portrayal of a man and woman who meet in an Athens hotel and fall in love. Yiorgos (Yiannis Kokiasmenos) has recently been released from prison, and we soon learn Strella (Mina Orfanou) is a trans woman and performer with a rich circle of friends. Their love story develops against the back drop of Yiorgos’ search for his son whom he hasn’t seen for over 10 years, as it takes him back to his village and throughout Athens; while we follow Strella in her very queer life in Athens. Then strap on your seat belts, Koutras takes a sharp turn in the plot that adds an extraordinary edge to their love. He also offers some of the most beautiful intimate scenes involving a trans person ever on the big screen.
  • Lambda Community Center in Fort Collins will be hosting a Transgender Day of Remembrance eventat Poudre River Arts Center from 7 – 10 pm on Friday, Nov. 18. The evening will feature hors d’ourveres, live music, open mic, a silent auction benefitting Eclectic, Lambda’s transgender support group, and guest speaker Matt Kailey.
  • Transcend and One Colorado will host a potluck, dedication, and talent show to memorialize those who were killed due to anti-transgender prejudice and transphobia. Join in on Saturday, November 19, 6:30 p.m. at the Center for Independence, 640 Gunnison Avenue in Grand Junction.
  • The Gender Identity Center of Colorado will host its Transgender Day of Remembrance “Celebration of Life” and candelight vigil on Sunday, Nov. 20 at 7 pm at the Jefferson Unitarian Church (JUC) at 14350 W. 32nd Avenue, Golden, CO 80401. A reception hosted by Keshet and One Colorado will follow the service.
  • On Sunday, Nov. 20 at 5 pm, Colorado Springs Pride Center’s transgender support group, Peak Area Gender Expressions, will be hosting a candlelight vigil and name-reading at All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church, 730 N. Tejon St. in Colorado Springs. Refreshments will be served.

Sunnivie Brydum is the Denver LGBT Issues Examiner and a guest blogger for One Colorado. This article is also available on Examiner.com. You can also find Sunni on Facebook and Twitter, exploring and talking about her passion: the politics of equality.