Picture this: In the backwoods of New Hampshire, a group of trans and non-binary kids gather for a talent show at summer camp. They show up with their well-rehearsed acts, eager to entertain, only to be met with a bass amp and a microphone. The meager PA system is better than nothing, but not by much. The campers deserve a setup that can do their performances justice — something big enough to properly raise their voices.
And an upcoming benefit show at The Rockwell hopes to give them that much-needed upgrade.
In honor of Trans Day of Visibility, ONCE Somerville and artist-activist Evan Greer have organized “Visibility is Not Enough”, a fundraiser for the New Hampshire organization Harbor Camps. As an organization that provides “confidence, resilience, and community for transgender and non-binary youth and their families,” Harbor Camps will use donations from the show to purchase a better sound system, literally amplifying campers’ voices. The goal seamlessly overlaps with the event’s message, which reiterates that it’s not enough to merely recognize trans people: We need to hear, support, and protect them, too.
“This year it’s more clear than ever that trans people are visible,” Greer tells Vanyaland. “We don’t need to be any more visible! In fact, we’re in the crosshairs. What we need is not just more ‘visibility,’ it’s solidarity and action.”
“Visibility is Not Enough” takes over The Rockwell this Friday (March 31) at 9 p.m., featuring performances from La Neve (pictured above), Candace Persuasion, Trap Beat Tranny, Levi Cain, and Greer herself. The timing of the event is pivotal, as lawmakers continue to push for legislation that harms LQBTQIA+ folks, often with a blatant focus on trans people. Georgia’s governor, for instance, signed a bill that limits types of gender-affirming care for minors last week, among other discriminatory laws passed states like in Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa, and Mississippi.
“Trans folks, and particularly trans youth, are facing unprecedented attacks across the U.S.,” Greer explains. “More than 300 anti-LGBTQ laws, many of them specifically targeting trans and gender nonconforming people’s access to healthcare, have been introduced in states across the country. Some of these bills are already passing, including a law in Tennessee that would literally make it illegal for me to play an all ages show there, since the state would consider me to be a ‘drag performer’ just for wearing the clothes I wear every day.”
It’s a grim reality that Greer and her fellow performers hope to make crystal clear with “Visibility is Not Enough.”
“Because so many of the anti-trans laws we’re seeing specifically target trans kids, it’s more important than ever that there are spaces where trans kids feel safe, honored, and have a chance to just be kids,” she emphasizes.
Grab tickets and the full events details below.
VISIBILITY IS NOT ENOUGH featuring LA NEVE, CANDACE PERSUASION, EVAN GREER, TRAP BEAT TRANNY, AND LEVI CAIN :: Friday, March 31 at The Rockwell, 255 Elm St. in Somerville, MA :: 9 p.m., all ages, $15 to 30 donation :: Event page :: Advance tickets