Queer Histories Festival

Circa Steering Committee Members

Erik Adamian, Board Chair, GALAS LGBTQ+ Armenian Society; Jerri Allyn, activist artist; Lynn Harris Ballen, activist, writer, and radio producer; Andy Campbell, critic, educator, and art historian; Holly M. Crawford, artist, Director of Adult Public Programs, LACMA; Samantha Eisenberg, queer activist; Rubén Esparza, multidisciplinary artist and curator; Tracy Fenix, curator and cultural producer; Chanelle Gallant, writer and feminist rights activist; Eric Kugler, writer and comedian; Ray Lopez-Chang, education equity organizer; Hugh McHarg, Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives, USC Libraries; Amitis Motevalli, Artist/Director of William Grant Still Arts Center; Rasheed Newson, author, executive producer, and showrunner; Marval A Rex, transmasculine actor, curator, and cultural producer; C. Jerome Woods, poet, curator, and collector.

Circa: Queer Histories Festival
Presented by ONE Archives Foundation

Open Call for Proposals 2023

Application Deadline: 11:59 PM PST on Monday, May 8, 2023.
All applications must be submitted via our our online application.
Please direct inquiries to


Celebrating seven decades of service to the LGBTQ+ community, ONE Archives Foundation presents Circa, the first and only LGBTQ+ histories festival in the United States. Kicking off at the start of LGBTQ+ History Month, October 2023, the month-long programming series will showcase the trailblazing histories and vibrant cultural contributions of LGBTQ+ communities through the lens of present-day challenges and triumphs. Spanning the arts, humanities, politics, and culture, Circa will feature queer and trans thinkers and doers leading the movement for LGBTQ+ liberation.


Program proposals may be explicitly about queer historical events or individuals. We also welcome proposals that loosely, creatively, and expansively approach queer history. 

What we mean by Queer Histories Programming 

ONE Archives Foundation (ONE) invites queer, trans, and allied community members, artists, activists, scholars, youth, educators, cultural institutions, and community organizations to submit innovative, thought-provoking program proposals. We welcome proposals from across the arts, cultural, and humanities disciplines in the form of: performances, screenings, readings, lectures, dialogues, debates, podcasts, workshops, exhibitions, pop-ups, parties, happenings, multidisciplinary programs, and more. We are currently prioritizing in-person programs but will also accept virtual programs accessible to broader audiences.

How we define Queer History

We define queer history broadly, as histories, herstories, and theirstories. Queer histories intersect everything in our lives. Consider submitting a festival program proposal on such themes as Activism, Solidarity, Liberation, Celebration, Inspiration, Lineage, Ancestry, Chosen Family, Sex Work, Humor, Introspection, Joy, Love, Resistance, Disability, Grief, Mourning, Death, Community, Outrage, Transgression, Intergeneration, Birth, Rebirth, Transition, Magic, Mysticism, Religion, Spirituality, Faith, Immigration, Amnesty, Labels, Pronouns, Language, Drag, Memory, and don’t forget… Sex! Other thematic ideas are also welcome.


    1. By submitting your proposal, you or your organization agree to partake in Circa, and to produce and host a program during LGBTQ+ History Month, October 2023. 
    2. Proposals from individual artists may be for new and/or previously presented works.
    3. Programs are self-funded by the individual, group, or organization that submits the proposal.
      • Fifteen (15) stipends of up to $500 will be reserved for small or emerging organizations, groups, and individuals. Indicate on application if you would like to be considered for a stipend.
    4. Accepted programs will receive robust print and online marketing and publicity support, including inclusion in the Circa festival calendar, microsite, and social media marketing campaign. 
    5. A limited number of program venue spaces will be made available at no cost to accepted proposals at one of our Circa programming hubs across LA County, including ONE Gallery in West Hollywood, the Los Angeles LGBT Center, University of Southern California, among others. 
      • Indicate on application if you would like to be considered for free venue space.
      • Please note, Circa programming hubs cannot host mounted exhibitions. If your program proposal is for a mounted exhibition, you will need to find your own venue and be responsible for installation and curation.
    6. Programming/curatorial advisors are available for consultation to accepted proposals on a case-by-case basis. 
      • Indicate on application if you would be interested in a consultation with our volunteer Programming/Curatorial Advisors.
    7. Incomplete program proposals, or those that do not fit Circa’s guidelines or thematic considerations, may be rejected.
    8. Please limit your application to one program idea per proposal.


ONE Archives Foundation recognizes the time and effort that goes into producing high-quality programming for our communities. To show our appreciation, we are proud to offer additional support to participating individuals and organizations, according to these eligibility guidelines:

  • Stipends of up to $500 are reserved for small and emerging nonprofits and individuals who may be asked to demonstrate need.
  • All applicants are eligible for free program venue spaces on a case-by-case basis, depending on availability.
  • All applicants are eligible for consultation with one of our expert volunteer Programming / Curatorial Advisors, depending on availability.
  • All applicants are eligible for print and digital marketing and publicity support. 


Please submit your program proposal via our online Jotform application by 11:59 PM PST on Monday, May 8, 2023. Applicants will be notified via email by Thursday, June 1, 2023.


*Asterisks denote required fields.

  • Individual or Organization Name*
  • Primary Contact Information (Name, pronouns, email, phone)*
  • Organization Mission/Description (if applicable; up to 250 words)
  • Program/Project Description (up to 250 words)*
  • Tell us how your program relates to queer histories (up to 250 words)*
  • Program Type (workshop, reading, screening, dialogue, performance, exhibition, etc.)*
  • List of Program Participant(s) with brief bios*
  • Optional Link (project or program documentation)
  • Proposed Date (must be in October 2023), if you have one. Please note, if you would like to be considered for free venue space, we will discuss available dates at the time proposals are notified.
  • Expected attendance*
  • Would you like to be considered for free venue space in one of our programming hubs? (Yes, No)*
    • If No, and if you already have a proposed venue, what is the venue?
    • If No, how will you address accessibility needs at this venue?
  • Would you like to be considered for a stipend of up to $500? (Yes, No)
    • If Yes, please provide an itemized program budget (Budget template included in form) 
  • If your proposal is accepted, would you like a consultation with one of our volunteer Programming / Curatorial Advisors?

Application Deadline: 11:59 PM PST on Monday, May 8, 2023.
All applications must be submitted via our our online application.
Please direct inquiries to

Images: Promotional image by ONE Archives Foundation. Photo by Priscilla Mars.

Join us on December 10 for  Together On the Air: LIVE on Radio pre-launch party.

Session Recordings