Kat Evasco: The woman who will make you laugh – and cry
Photo courtesy of NextDayBetter, a partner of Rappler. Text by Dorothy Santos
A couple of years ago, I learned about San Francisco-based comedienne, performing artist, writer, and producer Kat Evasco. I remember stepping into a Bindlestiff studio, a community-based performing arts venue dedicated to showing emerging Filipino American and Filipino artists, to watch a production Evasco had co-written with her long time collaborator, John Caldon.
Mommy Queerest chronicles her coming out process through her tumultuous years of discovering her sexuality despite her family’s staunch Christian virtues. The work also sheds light on the complex nature of her mother’s same-sex relationship to her long time partner.
Comical, heart wrenching, and poignant, Mommy Queerest proved successful and necessary to the queer community in the Bay Area with sold out performances. The production gained even far more recognition than Evasco had imagined as she started her national tour of the show in Boston this year through The Theater Offensive (her east coast debut also resulted in entirely sold out run).
Known for her mastery of storytelling, unabashed nature, and care for the community, Evasco participated in the OUT In Your Neighborhood program and collaborated with True Colors and the Queer Asian Pacific-Islander Alliance (QAPA) to run workshops to help others tell their stories.
It’s challenging to imagine this woman has a day job with all of the intense work and preparation that go into her theatrical projects. But it is true, she works just as hard during the day. She currently serves as the Deputy Director for The Future Project, an organization committed to uplifting high school youth by actively engaging them in projects related to their passions. The student-run projects range from social and political campaigns to companies that are facilitated by Dream Directors like Evasco. With the help of administration, faculty, and other students, these Future Projects aim to find what is disempowering for the students and help affect long-term change that leave the participants inspired and empowered.
With the cultural shifts happening in America, Evasco’s passion for her craft and desire to tackle issues affecting younger generations become imperative and relevant. Her work is, most importantly, vital to the giving visibility to the narratives of queer women of color. What better place than San Francisco, known for its radical roots in arts and activism, to create a foundation for other young people to follow suit?
The NextDayBetter SF team is extremely excited to have Evasco present her vision for the future and share her call to action on how we can all participate in changing the existing culture to build an inclusive society that compassionately accepts and celebrates differences.
Meet Kat Evasco at NextDayBetter + San Francisco Saturday, June 20th, 2015. – Rappler.com
A Creative Speaker and Food Series For Diaspora Communities. Our events celebrate the stories of changemakers from untapped global communities and call them to action. We believe that diasporas like the Philippines global community are hubs and inspirations for world-changing ideas. Learn more: www.nextdaybetter.com
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About the author
Dorothy R. Santos is a writer, editor, and curator. Born and raised in San Francisco. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Philosophy and Psychology from the University of San Francisco, and received her Master’s degree in Visual and Critical Studies at the California College of the Arts. She currently serves as a co-curator for Next Day Better SF.
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