Femme Brutal and GenderCrash

In my last post I mentioned that I was going to my first queer burlesque show. I was super excited because I saw a documentary about local women in a queer burlesque group and thought it would be a fun evening seeing them perform live. Alas, the night didn’t turn out to be what I thought it would be, but I had a great time nonetheless.

The event was called GenderCrash, and though many of the women whom I had seen in the Femme Brutal documentary were at the venue – one of them even co-hosted – it turned out that the friend who had invited me and I had been confused about what GenderCrash actually was. In the end, it was a queer performance party with several musical acts – some of which didn’t appeal to me – and delightful hosts. Despite my initial disappointment that the Femme Brutal girls weren’t performing, it was a fun night that gave me a chance to meet some new people and have my first look at the queer scene in a long time.

What was nice was that I didn’t have the same sense of discomfort that I generally used to have at queer events. I can’t say that it inspired me to start going to queer events all the time, but it was fantastic to see that when such events come up and friends invite me, at the very least I know that I won’t feel awkward being there. It was also a pleasant reminder that contrary to what some would tell you, it’s a scene that – while catering to non-heteronormative individuals – is not dictated by one’s sexuality. You don’t have to be interested in the same sex to go, and being interested in the same sex doesn’t at all mean that the place will suit your personality.

One of the ladies in the document actually made a comment about that, about how she saw straight and gay as lifestyles, and heterosexuality and essentially everything else as sexualities. How some non-hetero people actually feel more at home in the straight scene – which I would say applies to me – but how we as a society often assume everyone who sleeps with the same gender is automatically comfortable in the queer scene. It was one of the things in the documentary that really resonated with me.

Next year will be the 10th anniversary of GenderCrash, so I’m sure I’ll stop by if the friends who invited me this year remind me it’s happening. And I’ll definitely go if Femme Brutal is part of the line-up. Apparently they’re performing sometime in the upcoming months, so if that happens and I go, you’ll get a full report on it. For now, watch their documentary (German with English subtitles), I thought it was fascinating.



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