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New York 2017 ISPA Congress - Panti Bliss
New York 2017 ISPA Congress

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Panti Bliss

Session 4 | The Power of Identity
Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Panti Bliss | Moderator


Panti is Ireland's foremost "gender discombobulist" and "accidental activ-ist.” She began performing while an art student in the late 80’s before moving to Tokyo and becoming a fixture on the Tokyo club scene.

Returning to Dublin in 1995 she ran some of Dublin's seminal club nights, hosted the legendary Alternative Miss Ireland for 18 years, and per-formed all over the world. 
Panti has written and performed four critically acclaimed, hit theatre shows: In These Shoes,  All Dolled Up, A Woman in Progress and, All Dolled Up: Restitched. She is currently touring the world with her stand up show High Heels In Low Places which has played to stellar reviews and packed houses across Ireland, the UK, Europe, Australia, and the US. In October 2014 she published her memoir Woman In The Making which was a bestseller in Ireland.

She has been the recipient of many awards for both her work as an enter-tainer and as an activist, including a 'Person Of The Year Award’ and an Honorary Doctorate from the prestigious Trinity College Dublin.

In January 2014 Panti's creator Rory O'Neill sparked a national furore when he appeared on RTE television and discussed homophobia in Ire-land. The ensuing scandal became known as "Pantigate".

On Feb 1st Panti took to the stage of the National Theatre to defend her-self. Her ten minute oration has been compared to some of the great speeches in the English language and a video of the speech went viral online, was broadcast on TV and radio around the world, and became an international sensation. It was also put to music by pop royalty, Pet Shop Boys. 

Panti became an iconic figure for equality in Ireland, and in 2015 she played a major role in the successful referendum campaign for Marriage Equality in Ireland.
In October 2015 a critically acclaimed documentary The Queen Of Ireland about Rory and Panti broke box office records in Ireland.

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