"When Rae Spoon and Ivan E. Coyote first conceived of Gender Failure in 2012, it was as a 45-minute live multimedia performance of stories and songs about being trans and living outside the gender binary. “A real room-clearer of a show,” writes Coyote, quoting Spoon in their new collaborative book, also called Gender Failure, published in May by Arsenal Pulp Press.
For the past two years Spoon and Coyote have toured the show to receptive crowds throughout North America and the U.K. “It’s turned out to be a room-changer,” Spoon says over the phone from Montreal, just ahead of bringing the project to Canada’s East Coast. “We’ve changed the audiences who have come out to it, and the warm reception made us realize it was resonating.”
The positive feedback inspired the duo to extend the performance by another 45 minutes and tackle a book adaptation. Gender Failure gave Coyote and Spoon more space to delve into their individual journeys from confused female-assigned youth to productive, creative adults who refer to themselves using the gender-neutral “they” pronoun."