PrideFest workshop focuses on ‘feminine gender’ presentation

Wisconsin Gazette

PrideFest, at 4 p.m. on June 7, will feature a presentation on the Stonewall Stage about “feminine gender” presentation. Led by local filmmaker and transwoman Ashley Altadonna and Tool Shed owner Laura Stuart, the presentation will explore “options in make-up, clothing choices, body language, transition-related products, and more.”

WiG recently connected with Altadonna to learn more about the program.

You’ll be presenting on the Stonewall Stage, one of the more intimate settings at PrideFest. What can people who attend expect from the talk? We’ll be hosting an honest conversation about the challenges of female presentation. We’ll have useful tips for the participants on clothing choices, hair styling, voice modification and products like gaffs and breast forms.

Do you do these presentations on a regular basis, or is this event a one-of-a-kind experience for PrideFest goers? I have done several presentations on trans issues before, but this is my first time presenting on this particular topic. I’ll be doing another presentation on transgender sex topics at The Tool Shed later, in the fall.

It seems there has been an increase, at least online, in resources and retailers catering to LGBT customers and our fashion preferences and styles. Still a relatively small number, but an increase. Are there some resources you’d like to recommend? One of the best ways to find out about fashion resources is to connect with other members of the community. One of my goals with this event is to help facilitate those connections. For local transition-related needs, The Tool Shed has a wide selection of products and an LGBT-positive setting

The PrideFest promotion for the program says the targeted audience will be people assigned male at birth who are exploring feminine and/or female presentation, but everyone is welcome. What would you like the “others” in the audience to take away from the presentation? I hope others take away a great appreciation for the challenges facing those beginning their transitions and that they can be an additional source of support for the trans community.

You’ll be presenting the program after a drag makeover involving the Miltown Kings and before a performance by Funkin Wassels comedy troupe. Do you plan on catching these shows? What’s your favorite element of PrideFest? I’m certainly hoping to catch the Miltown Kings. My favorite activity at PrideFest is people watching. 

Besides preparing for this presentation, what are you working on these days? I’m finishing my documentary Making the Cut, which looks at trans health issues and the insurance industry and what it means to be trans and male or female bodied in our culture. More about the film can be found at