Tai Chunn, Founder of MVC Management Productions, has set out to make New York Fashion Week history by presenting the first all transgender fashion show, during the must-see, semi-annual event. Chunn says he created MVC’s event, Trans Europe Express, to change how the fashion world represents communities that are often overlooked.
“We believe in the old-school thought; that fashion is a business, and it is not all about the runway show. Everyone wears and rocks different styles. Fashion is for everyone and should be able to be found on any main stage runway across the world,” says Chunn.
Trans Europe Express is one of several events that will take place throughout New York Fashion Week, which runs from September 8, 2016 to September 15, 2016. This is on the heels of New York Fashion Week: Men’s, which was just held last month.
Chunn told BlackEnterprise.com, “I have partnered up with some amazing businesses, people, and charities in the past—including Impact Broadway—to create this wonderful, seven-day event.”
The show will be housed at the Harlem Skin & Laser Clinic, a local, black-owned, full-service, skin and laser clinic, which also provides services for the LGBTQ community.
Trans Models New York
MVC will work with LGBTQ designers for the runway show. Three agencies will help supply the models, including Trans Models New York, which was founded by Pêche Di, a model, activist, fashion videographer, and entrepreneur from Bangkok, Thailand. Di appeared on U.S. reality TV shows, including Bravo’s New York Million Dollar Listing, and in the film, Money Monster, directed by Jodie Foster. Di’s latest venture is Teadate, is the first transgender dating app out of Silicon Valley.
“I have used trans models in some of my NYFW shows in the past, such as the fabulous Tyra Allure and the late icon Octavia St. Laurent, who was seen in the legendary film Paris is Burning pursuing her dream of being a fashion model. But, because of the times we were living in, they had to pass for genetically born women,” adds Chunn, who is also the Co-founder of the My True Colors Festival for LGBTQ playwrights and filmmakers.
Trans Europe Express—Why Now?
The trans community is not a fad, but a reality. “Take a look around the globe. In a predominantly Catholic country where abortion, divorce, and same-sex marriage are banned, the Philippines elected its first transgender person to congressional office,” Chunn explains.
“Geraldine Roman will represent the Bataan province, which is just north of the capital city of Manila, in the country’s lower house. She is part of a political dynasty, in the country where her mother occupied the seat before her, and her father before that.”
Chunn also pointed out that almost every U.S. television network has a show depicting LGBTQ couples or their lifestyle. “It’s time the fashion world played catch-up,” says Chunn.
This story first appeared in Black Enterprise in August 2016.