AWI Short Film Competition

Staging Face

Under the spotlight, in front of a crowded room, drag performers are given permission to share our most authentic selves with almost certain acceptance. When the show is over and we leave our safe spaces, how do we cope with the realities of a less-than-forgiving world? What faces do we wear? Follow several captivating artists as they navigate the complexities of gender identity, community, and mental health – and learn how they became masters in staging face.

Content heads up: discussion of depression, anxiety, transphobia, misgendering

Director: Steph Young, Jake Ivany & Vie Jones

Asterix Media is a collective of artists who aim to challenge dominant narratives and bring marginalized voices to the forefront of new media. With a focus on 2SLGBTQ+ experiences, we use filmmaking, performance art, and other creative avenues as a means of amplifying these stories, reaching audiences around the globe. Asterix Media is based in K’jipuktuk (Halifax). Steph Young (she/her, he/him) is a filmmaker, drag performer, and mental health advocate. Like any good Taurus, he enjoys spending time cuddling his dog, or in the woods photographing wildlife and foraging for wild plants. Jake Ivany (he/him) is an administrative professional by day, a filmmaker by night and a big-ol-queer at heart. With years of experience in the nonprofit world, he loves to help bring stories to life and to the forefront of modern media. Vie Jones (they/them) is a two-spirit artist and performer. The art they make is rooted in community practices, Indigenous epistemologies and ontologies. They don’t know how to have fun without setting things on fire.

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Anxiety is the most common mental illness out there, and it takes a lot of different forms. Experiencing some level of anxiety is a normal...


Depression causes severe, negative changes in the way you think and feel which makes it difficult to manage day-to-day tasks and activities such working, sleeping,...

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