Moogfest Puts Trans And Nonbinary Musicians Front And Center

The annual music festival will include appearances by LCD Soundsystem’s Gavin Rayna Russom, Midori Takada and Chelsea Manning.

North Carolina doesn’t have the best track record with the LGBT community, but a music festival in the Tarheel State is try to change that by putting trans and gender-nonbinary performers at the top of its lineup.

Moogfest, taking place May 17 to 20, 2018, in Durham, will feature numerous nonbinary artists, including Fatima Al Qadiri, Stud1nt, Midori Takada and LCD Soundsystem’s Gavin Rayna Russom, as well as DJs Honey Dijon and Ellen Allien, and keynote speaker Chelsea Manning.

“We are committed to building a festival program that celebrates radical inclusivity,” says Moogfest programming director Lorna-Rose Simpson.

Chelsea Manning

The festival, launched in 2004 and named for electronic music pioneer Robert Moog, celebrates futurism in art and musi and technology as a tool for societal change.

In preparation organizers partnered with feminist drummer publication Tom Tom Magazine on a 50-hour music marathon, “Always On,” which featured live-streamed performances by female, nonbinary and trans musicians in 35 different cities.

“Just like every aspect of Moogfest itself, ’Always On’ is a platform to explore how technology impacts creativity, and how it can enhance how we design and how we build our communities,” Simpson tells NewNowNext. “We are offering this platform to empower female, trans and gender non-binary artists who have traditionally been underrepresented in electronic music. We want to celebrate these voices.”

I believe that true, well-told stories have the power to change the world for good. I also love a good listicle.