When neither checkbox applies: One dancer's push for gender-neutral awards

Tonight is expected to be the last time The Dora Awards separate awards by gender. Tom Power speaks to Sze-Yang Ade-Lam, a dancer who helped inspire the shift.
Sze-Yang Ade-Lam is a dancer who helped inspire The Dora Awards to stop separating awards by gender. (Beth Wong)

If you've ever watched the Oscars, you know there are two major awards that a performer can win: best actor for men and best actress for women. Now, a lot of people are saying it's time to combine the two awards into one gender-neutral category. Hollywood hasn't really embraced the idea, but an awards show in Toronto is running with it.

The Dora Awards celebrate the best in theatre, dance and opera. If everything goes to plan, tonight's ceremony will be the last time they separate awards by gender. It's an idea that's been in the works for a long time and Sze-Yang Ade-Lam, a dancer who tried to apply for a Dora a few years ago, helped get it closer to the finish line. Ahead of the Doras, Ade-Lam talks to Tom Power about how they helped inspire the shift.

Tom Power with dancer Sze-Yang Ade-Lam in the q studio in Toronto, Ont. (Vanessa Greco/CBC)

Produced by Vanessa Greco


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