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Transgender Film Center | Ben & Becky Bliss

Sav Rodgers
Sav Rodgers is working on a documentary about the influence the film "Chasing Amy" had on his coming-out experience.

A Kansas native is helping other transgender creators finish their films and an operatic tenor is teaming up with his family and friends for a livestream holiday variety show from Kansas City.

Segment 1 beginning at 3:25: A Kansas native's latest project is providing grants to transgender artists.

Filmmaker Sav Rodgers hopes that one day his Transgender Film Center "will see much better representation" of the transgender community in movies. Rodgers also discussed his documentary in progress, "Chasing Chasing Amy," that explores the impact the '90s romantic comedy had on him as a queer teen.

Segment 2, beginning at 30:27: Prairie Village native Ben Bliss is putting on his crooner's hat for a seasonal concert.

You might know Bliss as an opera singer and his sister Becky Bliss as part of the duo behind the indie group Barnaby Bright. As unlikely as it seems, the two will have a rare opportunity to perform together as Ben headlines "Holiday Bliss." The one-hour livestream concert will be a nostalgic nod to televised specials hosted by crooners like Bing Crosby from decades past.

The Transgender Film Center's Trailblazer Grant program is open to all transgender people. Two recipients will each receive $1,500. Applications are due Jan. 15, 2021. More information is available at the Transgender Film Center website.

The Harriman-Jewell Series will present star tenor Ben Bliss, family, and special guests in HOLIDAY BLISS, a free livestream concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, December 12, performed at the 1900 Building in Mission Woods. More information is available at the Harriman Jewell Series website.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
Chris Young is an Assistant Producer for KCUR’s Up To Date. Contact him at chrisy@kcur.org.
As senior producer of Up To Date, I want our listeners to hear familiar and new voices that shine light on the issues and challenges facing the myriad communities KCUR serves, and to expose our audiences to the wonderful and the creative in the Kansas City area. Just as important to me is an obligation to mentor the next generation of producers to ensure that the important conversations continue. Reach me at alexanderdk@kcur.org.
Whether it’s something happening right now or something that happened 100 years ago, some stories don’t fit in the short few minutes of a newscast. As a podcast producer for KCUR Studios and host of the podcast A People’s History of Kansas City, I help investigate questions and local curiosities in a way that brings listeners along for adventures with plot twists and thought-provoking ideas. Sometimes there isn’t an easy answer in the end – but my hope is that we all leave with a greater understanding of the city we live in. Reach me at mackenzie@kcur.org.