Sharon's Self Improvement Agency

DOCUMENTARY // IN DEVELOPMENT

How might we all be freed from the assumptions people make about us based on gender?

Sharon tells the story of her unique career of helping transgender people in Adelaide – in a time long before it was cool. Three former clients – now lifelong friends – reminisce in her beautiful home. They laugh and flip through photo albums together. Modern-day catwalk footage illustrates their stories of the past.

Three younger trans people arrive and Sharon shocks all six by revealing they’re to compete in a catwalk competition. She teaches them table manners, makeup and modelling – a crash course in fashion and ‘how to be ladylike’. During lessons, her contestants debate the necessity of ‘blending in’ with the rest of society. They question the usefulness of stereotypes in today’s world. Sharon’s students exchange stories of the joys and hardships in their lives, and they compare the challenges faced by different generations. Tensions mount between all parties in anticipation of what’s ahead.

At an Adelaide nightclub, the six compete in front of a live audience. A projected hype reel ahead of each walk gives insight into the contestants’ lives and dreams. Awards are bestowed and all (including Sharon) acknowledge a shift in their perception of gender. Sharon’s career is honoured by all coming to celebrate the diversity of self-expression.

To discuss this project further please contact Sam Matthews.

Credits

Project Treatment by Sam Matthews
Produced by Chloe Gardner and Molly O’Connor