nora monsecour wikipedia
We rely on advertising to help fund our award-winning journalism. Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Ben Affleck’s bungled rescue operation: how Argo united Britain, Canada and Iran in anger, Shirley review: Elisabeth Moss's Gothic biopic is a gruelling muddle, The 75 best horror movies of all time for Hallowe’en. I see gender as performative. And they haven't solely been dancing. Last year, Netflix found itself under attack over the original series “13 Reasons Why,” which many writers (including this one) criticized for romanticizing — and potentially encouraging — teen suicide. If the film was a fictionalised account of her life, rather than a documentary, she would do it. “Girl” is a work of fiction, but Monsecour asserts that it is an accurate depiction of her own lived experience. When does a member of a marginalized group get to deviate from the collectively approved narrative and become just another individual? Monsecour was transitioning. She went on to study at the Northern School of Contemporary Dance in England, and is currently in her first year as a company member with tanzmainz in Germany, dancing works by choreographers like Roy Assaf and Felix Berner. All semester long, they've rehearsed via Zoom from their respective student apartments or hometowns. Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! While many schools have had to cancel events or scale them back to live-from-my-living-room streams, USC Kaufman has embraced the situation and taken on impressive endeavors, like expanding its online recruitment efforts. Having taken puberty blockers at the age of 11, she was halfway through her female hormone replacements, with her sights set on gender reassignment surgery. … This anxiety of having this body in the way of pursuing my dreams was very much how my life was and how it is shown in ‘Girl. "I didn't see Victor as a male actor going to play a trans role," she told writer Jude Dry. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. For Monsecour, however, dance is an inherently physical pursuit, and there was no way to tell her story without focusing on Lara’s body. Dhont made sure to reply to every critic who took issue with his film, even Skyping one in particular. "Well it was so mechanical, so choreographed, and Victor is with his back to the camera.”. "I fell in love with it completely," she says. “He was really interested in me as a person,” said Monsecour. “Friends wouldn’t accept me in their bedrooms.” One of the film’s most powerful scenes has Lara’s classmates corner her into lifting up her dress. And in a way, it’s not a film, this is reality. Sign up for our Email Newsletters here. “There is a danger,” says Dhont, “in mixing activism and art. She was bullied, and had teachers who "didn't believe that transgender was something that existed in the world. “And anyway, cinema is [a] voyeur. Ed Frost spoke to Monsecour about the film, and her lifelong passion for dance. Dance Magazine went inside the making of the festival., Sponsored by Boston Conservatory at Berklee, Sponsored by USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, Girl: Netflix Film Stirs Controversy Over Who Owns Trans Stories ... ›, 'Girl': Trans Drama Impresses Cannes, but Will It Draw American ... ›, Netflix's Girl: Nora Monsecour responds to backlash from trans critics ... ›, Belgium Oscar Submission 'Girl' Is a "Message of Courage ... ›, Go Behind the Scenes of USC Kaufman’s Virtual Dance Festival. “My story is not a fantasy of the cis director. The message is to show that these things are a result of dark thoughts, [which] are the result of the struggle that we face.”. ", It's not that Girl sugarcoats Monsecour's life. After losing too much weight and bruising her groin by taping, Lara’s doctor postpones her gender confirmation surgery, or bottom surgery. And yet, her school principal told Monsecour that she was “going through a phase”. Lara’s story is my story.”, The first feature from Belgian filmmaker Lukas Dhont, “Girl” nabbed the Queer Palm at Cannes, the Camera d’Or for Best First Feature, and an acting prize for its young star. And in order to let myself dance freely, I wanted my body to match that. (Monsecour: “We constantly collaborated together from day one.”). Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube. Lara, the film’s central character, is played by newcomer Victor Polster, a baby-faced ballet dancer who is not trans. She began studying contemporary dance. 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", Monsecour also argues that Girl's obsession with the body is only realistic for a film with ballet as its subject matter. ", Another source of controversy: Lara is not played by a trans performer, but a cisgender male dancer, Victor Polster. Monsecour responded to his essay, writing that "those criticizing Girl are preventing another trans story from being shared in the world, and are also attempting to silence me and my trans identity. As Lara’s body collapses, unable to perform in line with her vision of perfection, her mental health unravels, resulting in a tragic denouement. The film was also Belgium's submission for the Oscars' Best Foreign Film award, and was nominated for a Golden Globe. W hen Nora Monsecour was 15 and training as a transgender ballerina in Belgium, she decided to join the womens’ pointe class. Particularly divisive was one of the film’s final scenes, in which Lara attempts to cut off her penis with a pair of scissors. Monsecour, a young trans girl, wanted to become a ballerina but her school had refused to allow her to switch classes. Watching Girl for the first time was "liberating," says Monsecour. The scene is distressingly long and uncomfortably naturalistic, and, according to Dhont, the trickiest scene to film. In Whitney’s view, the cinematography and direction is “invasive,” “voyeuristic,” and “leering.” Considering film’s history of fetishizing trans bodies, he is right to be alarmed. But for Nora Monsecour, whose real-life story provided the basis of “Girl,” Whitney’s opinion was painful to hear. “Girl” is nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film. “When I saw pictures of Victor, I thought to myself, ‘this is it, he is it.’ And I saw Victor as a human being.
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