The term tomboy usually refers to a girl who has “male”interests, and has a preference for “male”
clothing. You know, the type of girl who likes to wear sweats, plays soccer with the guys and wants be an auto mechanic. That was then. Now, gender fluidity is becoming more common.
Some people don’t even want to identify as either male or female. Bringing the subject of gender neutrality to light is Whitehorse native Ivan Coyote. Currently, Coyote – who prefers to be referred to as they, rather than he or she – resides in Vancouver, but they will be back in Whitehorse on Sept. 17 at the Yukon Arts Centre, to perform in the Tomboy Survival Guide.
The show features four performers: Sally Zori on drums, Alison Gorman playing trumpet, Pebbles Willekes on bass, and Coyote on sax.
“The show basically describes our common experience all growing up as tomboys, and some insight into surviving the world as people who don’t fit neatly into gender boxes,” says Coyote.
Next fall Coyote will be releasing a book also calledTomboy Survival Guide. This will be Coyote’s 12th book.
“I think books have the ability to go many places where I as the storyteller can’t or have not yet been,” Coyote says. “Books contain our collective history, and contain the histories that might not make it into our actual history books.”
The Tomboy show is set to provide an entertaining yet informative overview as a cross between story-telling, music, and humour. Coyote also hopes that some aspects of the show will resonate with the audience on some level. “I want them to consider what our rigid gender binary costs all of us, not just those who don’t fit it, but all of us,” Coyote says.
Ivan Coyote and the band perform the Tomboy Survival Guide Sept. 17 at the Yukon Arts Centre.