Ian Rafael Ramirez – Remembering the Utopian Performativity in Today x Future in Manila


Ian Rafael Ramirez

University of Melbourne

Remembering the Utopian Performativity in Today x Future in Manila

Drawing from my past experiences on being in Today x Future (TxF) – a renowned club in Metropolitan Manila, Philippines where Filipino members of the queer community gather – this presentation analyzes TxF as a site of performing queer futurity in the here and now. In this sense, this presentation is a looking into the past, a tracing back not only of the performances of an embodied queer community in the said space but also its historicity. This includes the changes in the landscape of TxF’s demographics, imposed restrictions over the years, and its dawning future. Specifically, this presentation aims at addressing the questions: How does the embodied queer community in TxF perform utopia? How does TxF transform modalities and actualize the utopia of queer futurity? To what extent can utopia be performed in this kind of space? The interest of this presentation is also in the critique of the club’s trademark – “The Future is Now”. Furthermore, the presentation relies on the act of remembrance as a way to challenge the “here and now” and envision a “then and there”. For this purpose, Jose Esteban Munoz’s notion of utopian performativity plays a central role in analyzing the performances of queer futurity in TxF. 

Ian Rafael Ramirez.Ian’s interest is on queer performances, performativities, and dramaturgies. His current research project is an inquiry towards the drag and gay pageant communities in Metro Manila, Philippines. At present, he is undertaking the Executive Master of Arts at the University of Melbourne.