Tuesday, Nov. 2, marked McDaniel’s very first transgender awareness event, featuring Katastrophe and Athens Boy Choir. The two talented rappers shared their individual journeys of striving for acceptance and love with their different backgrounds and experiences.
At noon, the two performers hosted a Transgender 101 workshop that was attended by about 10 McDaniel students and staff members. Everyone in attendence learned about stereotypes, terminology, and how to be a good ally to a transgender person. This workshop was definitely eye-opening for McDaniel students.
Rocco (Katastrophe), who performed mainly freestyle rapping, told his own personal story of what it was like to discover he was a female at puberty after thinking for years he was a male. He then decided that he would like to be called “George” and officially transitioned to the male sex around the age of 19.
Katz, the poetic rapper of Athens Boy Choir, expressed his genderless feelings and pride in being a transgender person. Originally, his gender expression was female, but he began to realize that living as a male is more comfortable and natural for him, and therefore made the decision to transition. He noted that he is taken more seriously as a man than while he was a woman.
The performance later that night was attended by over 60 students. Not only did it expose many to a whole new perspective, but it provided the kind of entertainment that college students thoroughly enjoy. Both Katastrophe and Athens Boy Choir impressed the audience with their upbeat rhymes and friendly nature. Katastrophe’s energy was astounding—he got up and walked around to the crowd. Katz was hilarious with his quirky YouTube videos he made himself, as well as his random goofy comments.
Overall, this transgender hip hop show was truly phenomenal because it showed students what it’s like to be a minority in society and to struggle with issues of personal identity. The performance sparked an underlying message: Transgender people are human beings that go through hard times just like everyone else. This transgender awareness event was an event that McDaniel students will not forget.