The Fully Functional Cabaret

Star Amerasu, Ryka Aoki, Annie Danger, Red Durkin, Bryn Kelly, and Shawna Virago
Apr 12, 2013 | 8:00pm
Julius Held Lecture Hall
3rd Floor, Barnard Hall
Co-Sponsors: Barnard College Library, Department of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies, and Theatre Department

The Fully Functional Cabaret

Collectively written, produced by, and starring an all trans women cast, The Fully Functional Cabaret: Trans Women’s Secrets… REVEALED! is a self-described “love letter to and from trans womanhood.” Facilitated by Annie Danger and featuring the performances of Star Amerasu, Ryka Aoki, Annie Danger, Red Durkin, Bryn Kelly, and Shawna Virago, this vaudevillian style cabaret incorporates song, dance, puppetry, glitter, poetry, live Foley Art, and deep interactivity into a vibrant repertoire.

Fully equipped with cunning humor, wicked camp, and a sweet, penetrating earnestness, we take you well past the skin-deep secrets everybody knows and straight the bone-deep truths we live every day.

The Fully Functional isn’t just trans sisters telling it how it is, it’s a shining piece of community theater designed to read clearly to a diverse audience and, ultimately, to remind us: everybody’s Benjamin is hairy.

The Fully Functional Cabaret was produced in 2012 with assistance from the San Francisco Arts Commission, the Queer Cultural Center, and the National Queer Arts Festival. The production premiered in July 2012 at the African American Arts and Culture Complex as the final act of the National Queer Arts Festival 2012.

Annie Danger (Emcee) is a multidisciplinary performing artist hunting the perfect hybrid. She is a trans woman born and raised in Albuquerque, NM and rooted in the SF Bay Area twelve years strong. Deeply interested in art that pulls its own weight, Danger tinkers with hearts and minds, using her razor wit to alter cultural archetypes and sidle profundity right up next to you before you ever see it coming. Her work is cunning in its use of humor and sweetness to put the ‘active’ back into ‘interactive art’. Danger has performed nationally and internationally in theaters, colleges, bars, galleries, and the streets. She has toured with Sister Spit, performed in The Fresh Meat Festival, and is a regular presence at the National Queer Arts Festival. In addition to the Fully Functional, she is working in collaboration with Keith Hennessy on Trojan X, a full-sized trojan horse to be unleashed on the streets of San Francisco this coming fall.

Star Amerasu (Vanessa, Specimen), like Aphrodite, rose from the sea in shower of foam. She has graced the people of this realm, with her talents of Singing, Dancing and Acting. From that moment, she has been seen in regional and community theatres around America. She is producer of 14 Black Poppies youth performance showcase.

Ryka Aoki (Selina, Doctor) is a writer, performer and musician who has worked with Fresh Meat, the Tranny Roadshow and the National Queer Arts Festival. Ryka is author of Sometimes Too Hot the Eye of Heaven Shines (RADAR Publications), and Seasonal Velocities (Trans-Genre Press). Her work also appears in Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation and Transfeminist Perspectives. She is the writer/director/producer of In Search of Geishaghost, a solo show commissioned by the Morphologies Festival in Minneapolis, MN.

Brooklyn-based writer, vlogger and comedian Red Durkin (Harry Benjamin, Marge) is the managing editor of She has toured extensively with the Tranny Roadshow, written 9 zines, and performed nationwide. Her writing has been featured in Punk Planet magazine and also appears in Topside Press’s flagship release, The Collection: Short Fiction from the Transgender Vanguard. Her work on YouTube has been translated into several languages and shown in college classrooms. Her first novel, Ready, Amy, Fire, will be released by Topside Press in the summer of 2013.

Bryn Kelly (Teddie, Daryl/Sarah) is a New-York based writer and performing artist of Appalachian extraction. She was a cofounder of the multimedia performance collective Theater Transgression, and regularly hosts the Gay Ole Opry, a queer country music showcase. Find out more about her current and past projects at

Shawna Virago (Cookie, Drill Sergeant) is celebrated for her striking lyric-based songs. She composed original music for choreographer Sean Dorsey’s acclaimed dance work Uncovered: The Diary Project. Virago’s writing appears in Gender Outlaws: Next Generation, Take Me There: Trans and Genderqueer Erotica, and Trans/Love: Radical Sex, Love & Relationships Beyond the Gender Binary. She is Artistic Director of the San Francisco Transgender Film Festival.

This event is free and open to the public. Venue is wheelchair accessible.

The Barnard Center for Research on Women engages our communities through programming, projects, and publications that advance intersectional social justice feminist analyses and generate concrete steps toward social transformation.

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