In its fourth year, Still Here takes on disPLACEment with a moving cast of artists that re-imagine and reinvent the meaning of home within a rapidly changing San Francisco, both past and present.
Each year, Still Here asks what can we learn from the incredible loss our community experienced during the AIDS epidemic of the 80s and 90s? How we can stand up for each other in the face of ongoing loss today? What is “home” and how do we keep it and hold it down for one another today?
Through diverse multidisciplinary performances, this year’s artists contribute a profound re-understanding of place, time, loss, and possibility in a very special night of performance. You won’t want to miss this intimate gathering of voices that refuse to be silenced and that remind us that we will always be “Still Here.”
Cristina Mitra gets life from the windy hills and complex histories within her homecity of San Francisco. A 3rd generation San Franciscan, her Mexican Filipino grandparents set down roots in this city over 60 years ago. She has danced for most of her life, was one of the first participants of QWOCMAP, and is the co-creator/co-curator of Still Here. She met her partner-in-crime, Natalia Vigil, in freshman high school algebra class and has thanked the stars ever since. You can find her at the SF Public Library where she coordinates citywide family programs and online at @filicana and @seemitra.
Natalia Vigil was born and raised in San Francisco, the city that inspires her everyday. She captures the resiliency of her loved ones and community in her multi-genre writing and encourages others to do the same. Her work has appeared in numerous publications and shows. She loves collaborative projects and is proud to be bringing Still Here to the stage for the 4th year in the city she loves por vida.
Cathy Arellano’s Salvation on Mission Street will be published by Kórima Press this year. The pieces in Salvation deal with the deep love instilled in a people for themselves and their homeland even as they battle loss due to institutional neglect, eviction, gentrification, and death in the Mission.
Gina de Vries, a queer, genderqueer, femme, disabled writer, writing instructor, cultural worker, and performer, grew up in San Francisco’s Lakeview/Ingleside; has called La Mission home for the past 12 years; and is currently (successfully!) fighting displacement. Ze’s the author of the forthcoming book How To Have A Body. Find out lots more at: howtohaveabody.tumblr.com
Janine Mogannam is a Palestinian-American poet and librarian, born and raised in San Francisco. Her writing attempts to make sense of intersecting identities in a world that often does not agree with them, drawing on themes such as feminism, the body, cultural histories and personal trauma. She still loves SF, in spite of it all.
Kaira was born & raised in SF after her parents immigrated from El Salvador. Music, dance, reading, writing have been key tools that have saved her life over & over again. The published piece she is most proud of is her book: Poems About This Roller-Coaster Ride Called Life.
Kegan Marling is a photographer, dance artist, and consultant from the San Francisco Bay Area. Influenced by Della Davidson, Lea Anderson, and Nigel Charnock, Marling’s work focuses on queer communities in San Francisco and their pursuits of play within social groups such as cowboys, gaymers, pups, queens, wrestlers, and faeries.
Mason J. is a Multidisciplinary Artist, Afro-Xicano SF Native, Genderqueer/Two Spirit/Trans* Man, Disability Advocate, and Activist. Born and Raised in SF’s Western Addition during the end of the crack and AIDS epidemics his work bends grit, tenderness, and critical flippancy to give unapologetic first person accounts of navigating his now unrecognizable hometown.
Natalia García (Favi Estrella -Dec 21st 1989) is Criolla born and raised in San Francisco. She has also lived and worked in Mexico and in her grandparents’ birthplace of Southern Spain. Dedica su arte a las que como ella no son ni de aquí, ni de allá.
Rachel McLean is a queer writer, wanderer, and public health nerd. She blogs at http://halfalonging.blogspot.com and http://punksinpublichealth.blogspot.com. She lives in Oakland with her roommate and two cats, Rita Mae and Miss Kittington III .
Tanea is a third generation San Franciscan on both sides. Tanea is a Columbia University graduate and Restorative Justice Practitioner. She is the child of an incarcerated parent and an abolitionist. When Tanea is not writing or dancing in the mirror she organizes for justice and freedom with The Last 3% of Black San Francisco.
Vero Majano is an artist born and raised in San Francisco’s Mission district. Her work seeks to preserve memories of the Mission in San Francisco history through film, story-telling and found footage. Her short films include “Calle Chula,” “Two-Four” and “I Reminisce,” which have screened at the Guggenheim Museum, the DeYoung Museum, and numerous film festivals. She was co-director of the film “Why I Ride, Low and Slow”, and co-produced with Sandy Cuadra the exhibition “Two-Four Homegirls, Circa 1980”, a collection of personal photographs that featured the Tiny Locas, at the Mission Cultural Center. A resident at the Djerassi Resident Artist program, she has received grants from the Rockefeller Foundation Media Fellowship and the Puffin Foundation. Majano is a member of the Caca Colectiva, and co-founder of Mission Media Archives, which collects and preserves audio and 16mm films shot in San Francisco’s Mission district during the 1970s and ’80s. The Mission Media Archives believes that by sharing their films with contemporary audiences, we all collectively preserve a past Mission.
Brian Thorstenson is a San Francisco based poet and playwright. His latest project was ‘Weather to Whether’ a dance theater collaboration with EmSpace Dance. He is one of the founding members of 6NewPlays. He previously collaborated with Kegan Marling on the short film ‘Sissy Song.’ He teaches at Santa Clara University and has an MFA from San Francisco State University. Brianthorstenson.com