Brandeis’ LGBTQ+ social group Triskelion (Trisk) started off Pride Month with its annual Prom. The 1920s themed “The Gay Gatsby” event reclaimed Prom for queer students who may not have been able to comfortably attend it in high school.
Starting at 10 p.m. on Saturday, March 3 at Chum’s Coffeehouse, Trisk advertised the event as having a “fire playlist” and free food. Of course, the “cheesy prom theme” of “The Gay Gatsby” inspired a few obligatory flapper costumes, though many other students arrived in more modern attire.
The playlist at the dance was “fire,” as promised. Students passionately sang along to decade-old hits like Gwen Stefani’s “Hollaback Girl” and Fergie’s aptly named, self-confident anthem from 2006, “Fergalicious.” Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” was another track that fit the scene. There were more than just fast, fun songs. Slow ballads offered a chance for couples to hold each other close. Refreshments like soda, cookies and Doritos were also served.
It was clear that whether or not each guest was out and proud, every one of them had fun. Even guests not interested in dancing still had smiles on their faces. Trisk came to please, and the guests were receptive to that fact. The energy inside the cleared-out Chum’s was palpable, though the dance floor was almost too packed to navigate. The crowd swayed back and forth on slow songs and jumped around on more upbeat tracks, with each partygoer showing their own individual flair.
Trisk held the event in part to make up for heteronormative prom nights. Many high schools held proms where people were not always able to attend in dress they felt comfortable in or with their partners. “Gay Prom” was a safe and more welcoming alternative to the iconic, though not always welcoming, event that some recall as a defining high school experience. The only requirement for the dance seemed to be a will to have fun and to create new, prouder memories.
The Gay Gatsby ended at 1 a.m., giving almost three hours for LGBTQ+ members of the Brandeis community and their friends to dance to their hearts’ delight, but it was just the beginning of Pride Month for Trisk, with much more excitement to follow.
In honor of Pride Month, Brandeis Stand Up Club, Bad Grammer, False Advertising, TBA, Crowd Control and Boris’ Kitchen have spent this week fundraising for Safe Homes—The Bridge of Central Massachusetts, a center that provides essential services and support to LGBTQ+ youth ages 14 to 23. Club members from these groups have come up with individual fundraising initiatives to raise more funds to support this cause. The six groups will wrap up the week with a joint show, “Comedy for a Cause,” on Friday, March 9, at 8 p.m. in Schwartz Hall.
For the remainder of March, Trisk will be hosting a number of events to create more safe spaces for queer students and to better educate the Brandeis community on LGBTQ+-related topics.
Trisk meets every Thursday at 8 p.m. in the Gender and Sexuality Center. In addition to the weekly meetings of the core group, Trisk’s four branches, Shalem, Queer People of Color Coalition (QPOCC), TransDeis and Sex and Sexuality Symposium (SASS) also meet regularly.