Learn about LGBTQIA+ stories this Pride Month
This month we celebrate Pride – honoring all members of the LGBTQIA+ community. We recognize all who identify as part of the community, especially in a world where many members have found themselves othered, victimized, and rejected by the greater populace. No matter their gender or sexual identity, all people are entitled to a life of dignity and respect.
As stated in our firm’s values:
In two of his theatrical works, Mr. Deratany spotlights real-life stories of members of the LGBTQIA+ community. The first production, the 2010 play Haram! Iran! was inspired by the true-life story of two teenage boys in Iran who were subjected to a sham trial and hanged allegedly for being homosexual. For Mr. Deratany, writing Haram! Iran! was the opportunity to combine two of his passions: the law and justice, along with writing and the arts. The case from which the play is based had sparked international attention due to the age of the defendants and the unusual practice of the execution of minors. The Los Angeles production was nominated for a GLAAD award for its run.
Another production also written by Mr. Deratany, The Civility of Albert Cashier, is a musical based on the true-life story of transgender civil war soldier Albert Cashier. He is a man – who was assigned female at birth – and when his secret is revealed years later, after fighting for the Union in over 40 engagements, we see who his true friends are.
The musical originally ran from August to October 2017 on Stage 773 in Chicago. It has since been revived as a stage concert this past May by the Trans Entertainment Guild with an all-trans/gender-nonconforming cast off-Broadway at Players Theatre in New York City.
The way we overcome stigmatization is by sharing stories. It builds empathy between the storytellers and the audience. It introduces new perspectives and understanding.
In her famous TED Talk, “The Danger of a Single Story,” author, and speaker Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie shares this, “Stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and malign, but stories can also be used to empower and humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity.”
With this, we encourage you, especially this month, to engage with LGBTQIA+ stories. With a community diverse in sexual and gender identity, there is plenty for you to discover and learn.