Posted by on 30 May 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

So far in June, I have 3 readings scheduled – all in Ontario and all connected to Pride events. More readings may be added and I’ll update this post as required but, nonetheless, the details as they currently stand are below.

First up, on Thursday 12 June, I’ll be doing a reading for Hamilton Pride Week. I’ll be reading with with Shani Mootoo!

Shani Mootoo and Tom Cho read for Hamilton Pride

Bryan Prince Booksellers are delighted to feature authors Shani Mootoo and Tom Cho reading from their new books in celebration of Hamilton Pride Week!

Thursday, June 12 at 7:00pm
Bryan Prince Bookseller, 1060 King Street West, Hamilton, Ontario
Toll free 1-800-867-0090

Award-winning author Shani Mootoo reads from Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab

Acclaimed author and performer Tom Cho reads from Look Who’s Morphing

Held in-store at Bryan Prince Bookseller

[Facebook event page here]

Then in Toronto on Friday June 20, I’ll be performing at a World Pride event. I feel so fortunate to be part of another great line-up (in particular, I love what I’ve seen of Cathy Petch’s work). As part of this reading, I’ll be incorporating some audiovisuals into my performance. It’s something I haven’t done much of, but I’ve recently become quite interested in extending my use of AV. Here are the details for the gig:

Pussy Basket: Genre Frock

An official World Pride 2014 event

Friday June 20, 7pm

Videofag, 187 Augusta Ave, Toronto

Genre Frock is the third instalment of the Pussy Basket Poetry Cabaret series…

How do you wear your gender? How do you wear your genre? Can either be fully defrocked and f**ked with? Using the idea of gender and genre f**k as a prompt, we have asked a line-up of seasoned spoken word artists, performance artists, and drag performers to play with genres and genders they haven’t played with before.

This evening brings you Donnarama Versace, Tom Cho, David Bateman, Nicki Ward, Cathy Petch, Bill Bissett, and more.

Open mic slots available throughout the night.

PWYC ($5 suggested)

We gratefully acknowledge the support of the Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies, the Sexual Diversity Studies Student Union, the League of Canadian Poets, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Reading Salon.

[Facebook event page here]

I then have another World Pride gig in Toronto with another exciting line-up! It’s a line-up solely comprised of trans artists too:

Transdangerous Cabaret

Beyond the boundaries and defying expectation there is… The Transdangerous Cabaret.

Saturday June 28th. New time: Doors open at 9pm for a 9:15pm start

Glad Day Bookshop, 598 Yonge St, Toronto

S. Bear Bergman (Toronto)
Tom Cho (Melbourne)
JJ Marie Gufreda (Indianapolis)
Mr. Business Casualty (Montreal)
Dot Dot Dot (Montreal)
Morgan Sea (Montreal)
Chase Ross (Montreal)

This event is pay-what-you-can to cover the performers travel costs, though we are hoping to secure funding to make it totally free.

[Facebook event page here]

This latter gig is likely to be my final performance in Toronto for some time, as I’ll be leaving Canada at the end of June. I will miss Canada so much, especially Toronto. I will return to Canada in mid-late next year (and if any Canadian artistic opportunities arise that are too important to turn down, I may return before then).

I first arrived in Canada on 18 February last year for an artist residency. It was my artistic practice that brought me here, then, and Canada has been very good to me on the artistic front (among other fronts). By July that year, I’d secured publication for Look Who’s Morphing. Arsenal Pulp Press, which is based in Vancouver, was my first choice for a North American publisher for this book and I continue to feel honoured that the book has been published by such a great local independent publisher. This is a publisher that has published many fine works and nurtured the careers of some outstanding practitioners, including queer and/or trans writers.

I have met many excellent writers and readers in Canada. The writers that I’ve met here have been very generous in sharing their knowledge and contacts. I’ve also been encouraged by the reception to my work in Canada (and the same goes for the USA). I am still very much in the process of building an audience in Canada but Look Who’s Morphing has won supporters, and the audiences at my readings, while sometimes modest in size, have been on the whole really appreciative.

At the same time, I’m acutely aware that I have to earn some more stripes in Canada. In Canada, there is limited recognition of the calibre of some of my Australian achievements. Before coming to this part of the world, I’d previously been published in some Canadian (and US) journals (details are in my publication list). I’ve also since done quite a few local readings. However, I need to build on my local track record on various fronts, especially as it relates to the publication of my second book. I do intend to publish my second book in Australia and I will always maintain artistic ties with Australia. In particular, in Giramondo Publishing, I have an Australian publisher to whom I feel much loyalty. But I must also publish that second book in Canada (and hopefully the US). I must do more residencies and readings too, among other artistic activities. So I do intend to return to Canada – and to Toronto in particular – to build on what I have started. At the end of June, then, I will be farewelling Canada, but only for now.

PS So what happens after my stay in Canada concludes at the end of June? Well, I’ll be heading to the USA. I’ll be living in LA from 1 July to mid-October. During this period, I’ll be doing readings in LA and San Francisco. I’m also currently looking into reading in Seattle and I’d love to come to Portland too. Moreover, other cities in west coast USA are definitely not out of the question. So, if you’re interested in booking me for a reading or you have contacts/suggestions for reading opportunities, please get in touch!


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