Screening, All Ages
The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex

900 W. 34th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90007

As the self-appointed AIDS DIVA and ACT UP LA spokesperson in late 1980’s and early 1990’s Los Angeles, Connie Norman stood proudly in her multiple, fluid and evolving LGBTQ+ identities. 

Both beloved and confrontational, Connie’s soulful and salty rantings and intersectional politics were heard widely through her newspaper columns, pioneering radio and cable TV talk shows. Through never-before-seen archival footage and interviews with her contemporaries, Connie’s piercing and compassionate voice urges us again into action and to fully engage with our lives and our world.

The conversation following the screening will feature filmmaker Dante Alencastre and Rabbi Robin Podolsky.

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Doors open at 6:30. Screening begins at 7:00 PM.

Participant Bios

Dante Alencastre is a working artist/filmmaker/activist who makes his living from his artivist work. His imagination envisions projects and sees the potential in individuals and the importance of stories and combines this with the courage and conviction to tell them, often beginning before any organizational structure or financial assurance is in place, but with a trust that their inherent importance to the community will allow them to come into being. He directs and produces LGBTQ+ documentary films with a particular focus on the social justice and visibility of the Transgender community. Previous films include EN EL FUEGO (Peru, 2008), EL FUEGO DENTRO (Peru, 2011), TRANSVISIBLE: BAMBY SALCEDO’S STORY (Los Angeles, 2013), RAISING ZOEY (Los Angeles, 2016), and AIDS DIVA: THE LEGEND OF CONNIE NORMAN (Los Angeles, 2021).

Rabbi Robin Podolsky is the Los Angeles Program Manager for At The Well, a Jewish women’s wellness organization. She serves on the Board of Governors for the Sandra Caplan Community Bet Din, writes at TribeHerald and, and serves as writing facilitator and dramaturg for Queerwise, a spoken word and writing group. Her most recent academic article, “Sumud Freedom Camp: Levinas’ Face-to-Face in Praxis” was published in Religions, Vol.10, No. 4. She conducts workshops, rituals and study sessions, for Jewish holidays and other occasions, that combine modalities: text study, personal work and small group sharing, writing (except on Shabbat and Yom Tov), prayer and meditation.

Josslyn Glenn (Moderator) is a Southeast Los Angeles-born Black Latina transgender producer, writer, spokesperson, and film festival programmer dedicated to promoting nuanced representations of queer and trans people of color that have historically been under- and misrepresented in media. While studying at UCLA, she wrote her first book, She Rotates with Pluto: A Collection of Short Stories and Poems. She has produced award-winning branded, editorial, scripted, and unscripted projects screening internationally, such as PeroLike’s “Being Queer in the Latino Community,” ABC’s “Soul of a Nation Presents “Pride: To Be Seen” and “Soul of a Nation Presents The Freedom To Exist with Elliot Page.” She has worked on the likes of Netflix’s Disclosure, and Con Todo’s Visions of Us. When she is not craving nachos, she is writing her second book, Tranny Pants, a collection of diary entries, essays, interviews, poems, and short stories detailing the familial and romantic lives of trans people she has come across.

This program is organized by Dante Alencastre as part of the 2023 Circa: Queer Histories Festival, presented by One Institute. This screening was made possible, in part, by the generous support of Paul D. Lerner and Stephen Reis.

  • The USC Libraries are an integral, inventive, and inspiring partner in the scholarly and artistic enterprises of USC faculty, students, and staff. In so doing, we actively contribute to the development of knowledge and advancement of the global human community.

  • Throughout the 20th century and now in the 21st, the School of Cinematic Arts has nurtured and inspired the writers, directors, scholars, entrepreneurs, producers, animators, interactive designers and others who have developed an unparalleled mastery in cinema, television and new media.