Being LGBTQIA+ in a world that on the whole is the complete opposite is tough. 2020 has seen the reversal of rights for so many of our community.
Its not just our rights that are being taken away though.
Every year on 20th November the transgender community takes time to remember the members of our community who have literally lost their lives for being transgender. In the proceedings 12 months to this years TDoR 350 names were remembered. That's 350 trans women, trans men and non-binary people murdered for being who they are. This meant that the last twelve months were most deadly for my community.
The thought that people would be moved to kill a person due to their being trans, is beyond me and one that fills me with rage. But when I'm moved to rage I remember the words of Martin Luther King Jr "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
As long as there are those who will persecute the LGBTQIA+ community then my resolve to continue to highlight and share my identity, as well as shine a light on the rest of my LGBTQIA+ family until its no longer an issue will remain.
I am delighted to introduce you to Dora Noszkay. She's a Manchester based singer-songwriter, guitarist and synth nerd. She's also a part of the LGBTQIA+ family.
If you were describing your music to someone who hadn’t heard you, how would you describe it?
Imagine a very earnest singer-songwriter who’s been playing guitar since age 7, but she’s just discovered synths and drums machines and is doing her very best.
Who were your musical heroes growing up?
Honestly, when I was ten it was Lady Gaga, Fergie and Tulisa. I remember seeing Amy MacDonald live around the same age and it blowing my mind that there were actually women who played guitar, and I had a similar thing watching Joan Jett on an Old Grey Whistle Test rerun the year after. Far by Regina Spektor is also one of the first albums I properly fell in love with. As I got older, I got more into folk - Gregory and the Hawk and the Tallest Man on Earth are the two artists that stand out from back then. Also gotta give a special mention to My Chemical Romance because I was that kid.
This feature for Dreaminisfree is highlighting LGBTQIA+ artists to help inspire people on our community that their sexuality or gender identity doesn’t need to prevent them from being successful. As a trans woman I understand, the impact that a lack representation has on us as a community. Do you think that it’s important to highlight these experiences and identities as a younger LGBTQIA+ woman? If so why?
I mean yeah, representation is absolutely vital for all minority groups. Moving away from queer identities for a second, it was such an incredible moment in my childhood just to see other women playing guitars after years of being the only girl in classical guitar ensemble rehearsals. Seeing other people like you doing the things you want to do is massively important for your self-confidence, and I think this can be applied to any minority identity, queer or otherwise.
I also think increased representation of trans people in particular is essential right now, given how slow England seems to be on the uptake that trans people are human beings with human rights and all that. Just representing trans people as normal humans who do normal human things - rather than objects of curiosity - makes a big difference as to how cis people like me perceive them.
Mainstream media seems intent in making LGBTQIA+ people’s lives as difficult as possible. Has any of this impacted you at all? Can you share how you’ve overcome any challenges you’ve faced due to your identity?
To be frank, I’ve had a pretty easy time of it. I had great role models in my aunts, a lesbian couple, so I knew from a young age that queerness was a normal fact of life. I’m also white and went to a school that made the news because of how progressive it was on LGBTQIA+ issues. That being said, I didn’t admit to myself that I was bi until I was 19, so there’s gotta be some internalised homophobia in there somewhere! But yeah, I’m very privileged as far as people go.
Events in Hungary, Ukraine and Poland have seen rights for LGBTQIA+ people reversed in last eighteen months. We’ve also had the anti-trans rhetoric here in the UK, since the Governments GRA consultation. Its as if trans peoples identities have become weaponised by exclusionary feminists in an attempt to prevent any progress. Yet there is no empirical data to support a rise in crimes against women in countries that allow trans people to self identify or non-binary people are legal. What’s your views on this?
I mean, it’s terrifying. My girlfriend is trans, so all the stuff that happened earlier this year with the GRA and the single-sex spaces crap was really upsetting. Don’t even get me started on TERFs - it’s so damaging to reduce a woman to her genitalia, and just blatantly scientifically incorrect. Also, as you said, there are so many studies that show trans women being allowed to go to the loo in public doesn’t lead to increased sexual assault rates.
The stuff we’ve seen in Eastern Europe is also bloody horrific. I feel like most of us are pretty clued up on the hellscape that is Poland, but the stuff going on in Hungary is also pretty nasty. They’ve basically made it so trans identities are not legally recognised, which is scary stuff. But like, a lot of people don’t know how nasty Viktor Orbán is – I probably wouldn’t if my family wasn’t Hungarian. I mean, I’m barely aware of the situation in Ukraine.
Your last single was the phenomenal Cash Aura remix of Reset (loved it). Are we in for anymore releases in 2020 or are we going to have to wait until next year for new music?
Yes! I have a new single coming out in December. It’s called The City and I’m super excited for people to hear it! It’s definitely my most ambitious production yet, and I really wanna see how it goes down with people.
If you had a message for any of your LGBTQIA+ fans what would it be?
Probably just tell them to keep an eye on trans rights in the UK, because we’re nowhere near out of the woods. If they try more roll-backs on rights, write to your MP because it can actually make a difference! And like, acknowledge your privilege if you have it ‘cos you can use it to lift up other less fortunate members of the community.
You can pre-save Dora's new single The City out 4th December here
If any LGBTQIA+ artists are keen to collaborate in this series of interviews then please email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you missed the last We're Here, We're Queer interview with Healey from Fightmilk you can read it here