The histories of queer people of color, especially from the SWANA (Southwest Asia/North Africa) region, remains generally unwritten. The lack of this critical representation has served as a guiding axis of Charachchi, our multimedia project created by queer Armenians.
Through our short documentary, STORIES UNTOLD: MEET QUEER SWANA SEX WORKERS AND DRAG PERFORMERS, we highlight the stories of queer SWANA sex workers and drag performers, bringing visibility to voices that have remained hidden within mainstream media, history, and cultural spaces.
Our program will feature a screening of this short documentary, followed by a discussion with the creators.
Doors open at 6:30. Screening begins at 7:00 PM.
This program may not be suitable for all ages. Attendees must be 21+ to enter.
Erik Adamian (he/him) is an Iranian-Armenian LGBTQ+ educator, creative, and community leader. As the president of the GALAS LGBTQ+ Armenian society Board of directors, Erik has organized and participated in several programs and projects geared towards providing services for and bringing visibility to LGBTQ+ Armenians in Los Angeles and beyond. As the co-founder of Charachchi, a multi-media project by and for queer Armenians, Erik provides creative direction, conducts outreach and interviews, and co-leads the content creation efforts, the editing and the execution of the project. Currently, Erik works in the field of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
James Melikyan (he/him) is an LA native Armenian, a sexual health educator in the non-profit sector, with a background in film. He has always had a passion for working with LGBTQ+ communities and started his involvement in the HIV education and counseling field in 2014 to help expand the resources available for LGBTQ+ folks. James’ background in film provided him with a new way of engaging with his community through Charachchi, a multimedia project by and for queer Armenians. James and Erik Adamian co-founded Charachchi in 2020 to portray a multi-faceted and playful side of LGBTQ+ Armenians within media. James executes photography and videography, provides creative direction, and co-leads the content creation efforts and editing for Charachchi.
This program is organized by Charachchi as part of the 2023 Circa: Queer Histories Festival, presented by One Institute.
A neighborhood oasis.