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Save the Date April 11, 2016
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Black Tie International:
The Ackerman Institute's Gender& Family Project



Hosted by




Music Direction by LANCE HORNE


The Ackerman Institute’s Gender & Family Project will present its third annual benefit, A Night of A Thousand Genders, an evening of cocktails followed by a very special one-night-only cabaret evening celebrating the beauty and resilience of gender expansive youth and their families on Monday, April 11, 2016 from 6:00-8:30pm at City Winery (155 Varick Street, New York, NY)

The third annual Night of a Thousand Genders will be hosted by Emmy and Golden Globe nominee, actor and activist, Alan Cumming (“The Good Wife”) and will feature performances by mezzo soprano vocalist and violinist Tona Brown, Broadway performer Javier Muñoz (Hamilton), Tony nominee Sydney Lucas (Fun Home), and with Music Direction by Emmy Award-winning composer Lance Horne.  Additional performers will be announced in the coming weeks.

The second annual Ackerman Institute’s Gender & Family Project Family Award will be given to Nick Teich and his family. Teich founded Camp Aranu’tiq, a summer camp that provides a safe and fun environment for youth who feel like they might not fit in at other camps because of their gender and/or who wanted to be with others like them.  Camp Aranu’tiq launched its first season in 2010 with 41 campers and has since grown into a summer camp organization that serves over 400 campers a year.  Besides working year-round to prepare for and run Aranu’tiq’s programs, Nick is also a PhD candidate at Brandeis University and authored Transgender 101: A Simple Guide to a Complex Issue.  He has a deep personal interest in helping transgender youth to be themselves.  He lives in the Boston area with his wife, Erika, and their two dogs, and spends the summer at camp.

The second annual Ackerman Institute’s Gender & Family Project Community Award will be given to siblings Reina and Che Gosset for their advocacy, community organizing and archiving in the trans communities. Reina Gossett is an activist, writer, and artist and the 2014-2016 Activist-In-Residence at Barnard College’s Center for Research on Women.  As the membership director at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project from 2010 to 2014, Reina worked to lift the voice and power of trans and gender non-conforming people and took part in the successful campaign to end healthcare discrimination to low income trans and gender non-conforming New Yorkers. Che Gosset is a Black genderqueer independent scholar and activist who works to excavate queer of color AIDS activist and trans archives. They hold an MA in history from the University of Pennsylvania and an MA in education from Brown. They have received a research grant from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University for their project on legacies of queer Black solidarity with Palestinian struggle, have been selected as a Martin Duberman Visiting Scholar with the New York Public Library, and recently received the Sylvia Rivera Award in Transgender Studies from the Center for Gay and Lesbian Studies at the City University of New York.

The event is sponsored by the Ackerman Institute for the Family and by Honorary Chairs, Andrew Solomon and Geena Rocero.  Solomon is a writer and lecturer on psychology, politics, and the arts; winner of the National Book Award; and an activist in LGBT rights, mental health, and the arts. Rocero is a model, TED speaker, and activist. She is the founder of Gender Proud, an advocacy and aid organization that stands up for the right of transgender people worldwide to “self-identify with the fewest possible barriers”.

A Night of a Thousand Genders begins with cocktails and buffet dinner at 6:00PM followed by the benefit performance beginning at approximately 7:00PM.  Following the event there will be an After Party at City Winery with music by DJ Lina Bradford.  All proceeds from this annual event will support The Ackerman Institute’s Gender & Family Project’s mission to raise awareness about the critical need for more services supporting families of gender expansive youth, at home and in schools, as well as expanding its staff and scope of services in the greater New York area and beyond.

The Benefit Committee for the event includes: Eva Fehren, Alan Koenigsberg, Jeremy Matz, Ross Meyerson, Jodie Patterson, Jessie Randall & Brian Murphy, Jane Miller Rennert & Elliot Rennert, Christopher Scott, and Steven Sousa.

Andrew Solomon, Ph.D is a writer and lecturer on politics, culture and psychology, a Professor of Clinical Psychology at Columbia University Medical Center, and President of PEN American Center. Solomon’s most recent book, the best-selling Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity (Scribner, 2012), tells the stories of families raising exceptional children who not only learn to deal with their challenges, but also find profound meaning in doing so. Far from the Tree has received the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction; the J. Anthony Lukas Award; the Anisfield-Wolf Award; the Wellcome Book Prize; the Books for a Better Life Award of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society; the Green Carnation Prize; the National Council on Crime and Delinquency’s Distinguished Achievement Award in Nonfiction; and the New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) Book of the Year Award for Nonfiction, among others. Far from the Tree was chosen as one of the New York Times Ten Best Books of 2012, and a best book of 2012 by Publishers Weekly, the Boston Globe, the San Francisco Chronicle,, Kirkus Reviews, TIME, and; it has also been named a Book of the Year by the Economist, the Cleveland Plain-Dealer, and BuzzFeed. Far from the Tree has been translated into Dutch, German, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, and Spanish, with numerous other translations forthcoming.

Geena Rocero Geena is a Model, Producer, Trans Rights Advocate and host of the new USA Network show ASPIREist.  On March 31, 2014, in honor of International Transgender Day of Visibility, Rocero came out as transgender at the annual TED Conference, her talk has since been viewed almost 3 million times. Geena is the founder of Gender Proud, an advocacy and media production company that tells stories to elevate justice and equality for the transgender community.  She recently produced and presented “Beautiful As I Want to Be" on LogoTV highlighting trans youth, for which they received a 2016 GLAAD Media Award. Geena has spoken at the White House, United Nations, and been featured on E's I am Cait, Cover of Candy Magazine, Marriott's #LoveTravels Campaign and CoverGirl #GirlsCan Campaign.  She has been featured in numerous media publications such as CNN, MSNBC, Today Show, Cosmopolitan, Vanity Fair, Elle, Entertainment Weekly, People, Variety, MTV and many others.

Alan Cumming is an actor and activist beyond eclectic and according to the New York Times “a bawdy countercultural sprite” Time Magazine named him one of the most fun people in show business; He plays political maverick Eli Gold on CBS’s The Good Wife, for which he received Golden Globe, Emmy, SAG and Satellite award nominations and was last seen on Broadway inhis Tony Award-winning role as the Emcee inCabaret. Alan’s diverse career has found him performing at venues around the globe including the Sydney Opera House; making back to back films with Stanley Kubrick and The Spice Girls; directing and starring in a musical condom commercial; creating voices of a Smurf, a goat and Hitler; and recording an award-winning album of songs. Alan is also Host of PBS’s Masterpiece Mystery and appearedopposite Lisa Kudrow in Showtime's Web Therapy. Alan has written for The NY Times, Newsweek, Harpers Bazaar, Out, as well astwo books; Tommy’s Tale and his NY Times Best Selling memoir, Not My Father's Son. A tireless champion for LGBT civil rights and HIV/AIDS, Alan serves on the Board of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and works closely with amfAR, The Trevor Project and the Ali Forney Center to name but a few.

Lina Bradford was born and raised in New York City, across the street from famed Carnegie Hall on the Upper West Side. She identified as Trans at a young age and her career in entertainment began at an early age as a dancer. She studied modern ballet, tap and jazz for 11 years and performed in several companies throughout NYC. Those same moves she learned in rehearsals became a part of her signature style when she began her DJ career 18 years ago by performing throughout the gritty East Village scene. She traveled through Europe, appearing in Sardinia, St Tropez, London and Paris. Accolades soon came rolling in, including DJ of the year and Lifetime Achievement awards at the Glammy and Sage Innovator. She began a residence on Fire Island in 2005 and has been holding it down every weekend since. DJ Lina is often seen hosting the biggest private parties from NYC to Europe. Even with all her accomplishments, she feels as if she is just beginning to hit her stride. "I've never felt more sexy and solidified in my life," she says. "This is by far the most beautiful spot I've been in."

Vocalist and violinist Tona Brown has an international career as a violinist, mezzo soprano and has performed throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. Ms. Brown is also an advocate for transgender issues and the arts and speaks and performs for major events as a representative on the speakers bureau for the It Get's Better Campaign. She has been heard on such shows as "Now What with Kevin E. Taylor", Siriux XM's "Seth's Big Fat Broadway", Radio Show, WHRO's "Hear Say with Cathy Lewis", WEAA 88.9 Fm's Marc Steiner and Anthony McCarthy Show and sang the National Anthem at the Department of Veteran Affairs "2nd Annual LGBT Pride Month Commemoration Ceremony". Tona was also chosen to sing the National Anthem at the LGBT Leadership Gala Dinner for President Barack Obama at the Sheraton in NYC. Tona Brown is also first African American woman to perform at Carnegie Hall during NYC Pride Month June 2014. In addition, Tona focuses on trans issues with her own online TV series, Conversations With Tona Brown. Ms. Brown was formally educated at the Shenandoah Conservatory of Music studying violin performance with minors in viola, piano and voice. She also attended the Governor's School for the Arts a prestigious art high school program for gifted and talented students. Tona performed in the role of La Zia Principessa in the Puccini opera Suor Angelica, and her rich, full voice captivates audiences the world over. She also accompanied chart-topping R&B artist Nhojj on his new album, Made To Love Him, and performed the score of the Off-Broadway stage play Cybersex in a February 2014 showcase engagement in New York City. Tona's talents have evolved to include acting, and she's been cast as Delia, a major character in the upcoming, new Netflix series City Lightz. Discover more about this exquisitely gifted artist at

Sydney Lucas made both her Broadway and Off Broadway debuts portraying the role of Small Alison in Fun Home. Her performance received a Tony Nomination, the Obie Award and a Theatre World Award as well as nominations for a Lucille Lortel Award, an Outer Critic's Circle Award, a Drama Desk Award, and a Drama League Award. Most recently, Sydney has landed a series regular role in AMC's upcoming series The Son, playing Jeannie McCullough, the tomboy granddaughter alongside actor Sam Neill. Other TV credits include:Law & Order: SVURoyal PainsFX pilot How & Why and a digital short on Saturday Night Live entitled The Stand Off (opposite Jeremy Renner). Film credits include: She's Funny That Way, film short Fool's Day, and the young version of Kristen Wiig's character in both Girl Most Likely and The Skeleton Twins. She just recently completed filming the indie Dudedirected by Olivia Milch. Sydney recently played her dream role of Mary Lennox in the concert production of The Secret Garden alongside an all-star cast at Lincoln Center.

Currently starring in Hamilton and sharing the title role with the show's creator Lin Manuel Miranda, Javier Muñoz has had the great honor to perform the role for both The President of the United States and The First Lady. This is Javier's second venture with Lin Manuel as he was also part of both the off Broadway and Broadway companies of In The Heights and the first to take over the role of Usnavi after Lin Manuel's departure. Other selected credits: The Porch (Ziad) at Altered Stages; Venice (Venice) at Center Theatre Group; Two Gentlemen of Verona (a rock opera) (Proteus) at Shakespeare Theatre of DC; Oregon Shakespeare Festival's Richard III (Dorset) and Into The Woods (The Baker).

Lance Horne is a composer-lyricist who has performed alongside, composed, and/or provided arrangements for Alan Cumming, Liza Minnelli, Carol Channing, Kristin Chenoweth, Ricki Lake, Pink Martini, the von Trapps, Jake Shears/Scissor Sisters, Justin Bond, Sandra Bernhard, Ben Folds, Neil Gaiman, Amanda Palmer/Dresden Dolls, Boston Pops, and toured the world with Meow Meow. He has performed for President Obama, the First Lady, and Queen Elizabeth. Lance has conducted return engagements at Sydney Opera House and international tours of Handel's Messiah Rocks and Jekyll & Hyde. He co-music directed/co-arranged Prometheus Bound by Steven Sater and Serj Tankian and Cabaret starring Amanda Palmer, both at American Repertory Theatre. He contributed original material and arrangements to Vegas! The Show currently playing at Planet Hollywood Casino in Vegas, music directed the Sater/Sheik Alice by Heart for the National Theater in London, and provided the vocal arrangements for the Broadway production of Little Women. His debut album First Things Last released on Yellow Sound Label with concurrent concerts at Lincoln Center and on the West End. TV includes theme for The Ricki Lake Show (Fox), multiple Macy's Thanksgiving Parades (NBC). Lance received a daytime Emmy for Best Original Song; the Jonathan Larson Award; a Bistro Award for producing Alan Cumming's album, I Bought a Blue Car Today; the ASCAP Foundation Jamie DeRoy Award for Emerging Songwriter; and an Interlochen Ovation Award. Lance is a Steinway Artist with BM, MM in Composition, The Juilliard School. For compositions, visit

About the Ackerman Institute’s Gender & Family Project:

The Ackerman Institute’s Gender & Family Project (GFP) empowers youth, families and communities by providing gender affirmative services, training and research. GFP promotes gender inclusivity as a form of social justice in all the systems involved in the life of the family.

Directed by Jean Malpas, an international expert on gender and sexuality, GFP is a unique program in New York City, that offers multidisciplinary family-oriented services to gender nonconforming youth, including children under 13. Affirmative services include:

Services provided include:

·         Support group for parents

·         Play group for children

·         Sibling Group

·         Support group for adolescents

·         Spanish-speaking support and play groups

·         Psychological evaluation

·         Family therapy and parental coaching

·         Gender inclusivity training for schools

·         Training for health professionals

·         Liaising for medical and legal referrals

·         Research on the needs of trans youth and families.

Since its inception, GFP has:

·         Reached more than 1000 families

·         Trained more than 3000 professionals

·         Provided comprehensive training to public and private schools

·         Co-sponsored a family conference attended by 750 professionals and family members

·         Been presented to professional audiences in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Thailand, Turkey and around the U.S.

GFP is a project of The Ackerman Institute for the Family. Founded in 1960, the Ackerman Institute for the Family is one of the premier institutions for family therapy and one of the most highly regarded training facilities for family therapists in the United States.

To learn more about the Gender & Family project or to purchase tickets to A Night of a Thousand Genders please visit


Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Photo by:  Rose Billings/

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