Why Genderbending Shouldn't Have To Be A Statement
Start writing a post
Entertainment

In Our Progressive Society, Why Is Genderbent Casting Only Either A Necessity Or A Statement?

I'm just a girl who wants to be able to play a boy, is that too much to ask for?

55
Woman's profile
https://pixabay.com/users/geralt-9301/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=3554250">Gerd Altmann</a> from <a href="https://pixabay.com/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=3554250">Pixabay</a>

"Sometimes I just want to be a boy," I complained to a classmate.

"Well, Celine, you can be whatever you want to be." My kind professor interjected.

But apparently, I can't.

With all the forward-thinking, progressive movements in our society today that are working toward abolishing gender stereotypes (and gender as a concept), why is my gender still a defining factor when it comes to what/who I am cast as in theatrical productions?

If you've read some of my previous articles, you know that I'm a musical theater performer. There are plenty of roles that I would love to play, many of which I could play - female characters who are within my age range and vocal range. But, there are many characters I would love to play that I can't until gender isn't considered when it comes to casting.

Genderbent casting makes an appearance every once in a while, but it is a most common necessity (in children's theaters, high school plays, and community theaters), or it's used to make a statement (definitely a good thing, but not what I'm getting at). When I was 12-years-old, I played Prince Phillip in "Sleeping Beauty Jr." because the girl playing Aurora was also 12 years old and all the boys were way too small to cast as her love interest. So I landed the role, put on my "boy" pants, big "boy" shirt, and tucked my hair into my "boy" hat, and played a convincing boy at 12 years old. I was approached by an audience member after the show who told me she didn't realize I was a girl until she read the program.

What I mean to say is (when not out of necessity) "genderbent casting" is always a conscious choice. Meaning, gender and/or "appearance of gender" is a main factor when it comes to considering actors for certain roles. My question is this: why should an actor's "appearance of gender" dictate whether or not they get a certain part? Shouldn't it be about the ability to convincingly play a part and talent?

Ah, but in order to "convincingly play a part" you have to look the part, right? I guess. But why do my gender and the stereotypical gender norms that I may or may not conform to add or detract from my ability to "look the part"? Makeup can work wonders. Haircuts can change entire appearances.

I was born female. I identify as a female. But my dream role is male: Jared Kleinman in Dear Evan Hansen. But will I ever get the chance to even try to be considered for this part? Only if society continues changing.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee
nappy.co

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

90720
college students waiting in a long line in the hallway
StableDiffusion

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less
a man and a woman sitting on the beach in front of the sunset

Whether you met your new love interest online, through mutual friends, or another way entirely, you'll definitely want to know what you're getting into. I mean, really, what's the point in entering a relationship with someone if you don't know whether or not you're compatible on a very basic level?

Consider these 21 questions to ask in the talking stage when getting to know that new guy or girl you just started talking to:

Keep Reading...Show less
Lifestyle

Challah vs. Easter Bread: A Delicious Dilemma

Is there really such a difference in Challah bread or Easter Bread?

62486
loaves of challah and easter bread stacked up aside each other, an abundance of food in baskets
StableDiffusion

Ever since I could remember, it was a treat to receive Easter Bread made by my grandmother. We would only have it once a year and the wait was excruciating. Now that my grandmother has gotten older, she has stopped baking a lot of her recipes that require a lot of hand usage--her traditional Italian baking means no machines. So for the past few years, I have missed enjoying my Easter Bread.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments