News & Runway

Marco Marco’s NYFW Runway Featured an All-Transgender Cast


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When I started #TransIsBeautiful 3 years ago I wanted it to be a way for trans folks to celebrate what makes us uniquely and beautifully trans. It wasn’t about how cis we can look but rather about celebrating those things about us that are uniquely and beautifully trans. The #marcomarcoshow last night which featured a cast or all trans models feels like yet another fulfillment of the empowerment of trans beauty this hashtag is meant to celebrate and engender. Thank you to everyone who has used this hashtag to empower yourselves and each other. Congratulations to everyone in the historic Marco Marco Show last night. #TransIsBeautiful Regrann from @faymeproblems – Last night was full of so much love and so much beauty. @geenarocero @ariscestocrat @tracelysette @gigigorgeous @dominiquet.a.r.jackson @alionsfear @thelinabradford @steroidbeyonce @laith_ashley @angelicaross @leeummmm @theofficial_amarijayce @carmen_carrera @ftmmuscle @hansongobron @marcomarcounderwear #nyfw #transgender #transisbeautiful #lgbt #marcomarco #nyfw2018 #lgbtq #marcomarcoshow – #regrann

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Los Angeles-based designer Marco Marco cast 34 transgender models for his runway show at New York Fashion Week on September 9. This is definitely one for the books because no other fashion show in history has featured only transgender models in a major event.

“[I]t became apparent to me that [trans and non-binary people’s] presence was often overshadowed by cis gay men or cis gay men in drag,” designer Marco Morante told Mic. “I wanted to create a space to celebrate trans bodies.” Morante’s statement echoes the sentiments of RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Violet Chachki, who stressed the need for queer visibility in mainstream fashion.

Filipino-American model Geena Rocero, who opened the show, told Mic that the dialogue on inclusion must continue despite this runway feat, adding that previous fashion seasons made very little effort to include transgender models, calling the few castings borderline tokenism. According to theFashionSpot’s Fall 2018 runway diversity report, out of 242 shows and 7,608 castings across New York, London, Milan and Paris, only 64 were openly transgender or non-binary models. Despite the record number of trans models last season, the industry can surely do better.

Pose actresses Dominique Jackson and Angelica Ross also strutted down the runway in blonde wigs, looking mighty fierce in their glittery black outfits. Drag Race Season 3 contestant Carmen Carrera sashayed along the catwalk as well, wearing a sea-green turtleneck sheath dress and high heels.


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Other models who appeared on the runway were Hanson Gobron, Aydian Dowling, Laith Ashley, Trace Lysette, Gigi Gorgeous, Our Lady J, Yonik, Arisce Wanzer, Jaimie Wilson, Lina Bradford, Dominque Silver, Hanson Gobron, Cassandra James, Brax Fleming, Dominique C, Tashan Lovemore, Marquise Vilsón, Bryson Thompson, Gisele Extravanganza, Sir Knight, Amari Jayce, Liam Cutler, JJ Jacobs, Claudia Charriez, Shady Prada, Lucas Elliot, Paulo Batista, Court Pineiro, Dezjorn Gauthier and Devin-Norelle.

“Being trans is not a trend; it is life, beauty and power,” Rocero told Mic.

Watch the full show in the video below.

[ Next: Sasha Velour’s Opening Ceremony Drag Show at NYFW Was Filled With Stars, Statements and Legends ]