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Jo Clifford is an award-winning British writer, performer, poet and teacher based in Edinburgh. She is a prolific writer having some 150 plays under her belt, but the one that has attracted most attention (and notoriety) is The Gospel According To Jesus, Queen of Heaven. The play features Jesus as a trans woman is and was one of the first in the UK to be written by and starring a trans person.

Clifford has said that the play had begun her social gender transition, where she was “encountering hatred on the street from people shouting abuse at me, saying horrible things, laughing at me. I wondered where this hatred came from. I’d read the Gospels, and when I read them I was profoundly moved. I had been brought up as a Christian and taught that when you’re unsure of what to do, you should try to think, ‘What would Jesus do?’ I thought, ‘Well, what would Jesus do if Jesus came back to earth now and was me, a trans woman? What would she do and what would she say?’ That was the origin of the play.” In Out of the Ordinary: Representations of LGBT Lives, Clifford spoke about the abuse she experienced, connecting it to what she saw as harsh prohibitions against transgender and gender variant individuals in the Old Testament of the Bible.

Since Clifford first performed the play in Glasgow in 2009 she has encountered great resistance from Theaters leaving her to perform in churches like St Marys of The Harbor in Provincetown one of the most diverse and welcoming towns in the US. Its where QUEERGURU caught up with her…. full of good humor , and so much love for our community …..it was a sheer joy learning more about her work and her life

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