An Extraordinary Storyteller with bizarre and wonderful tales to tell
Experience the artful, playful, outrageously funny, and deeply moving storytelling craft of Peterson Toscano. Connecting issues and ideas to bizarre personal experiences, literature, science, and even the odd Bible story, Peterson takes his audience on an off-beat mental mind trip. A shapeshifter, he transforms right before your eyes into a whole cast of comic characters who explore the serious worlds of gender, sexuality, privilege, religion, and environmental justice. His unique personal journey led him into performance art.
After spending 17 years and over $30,000 on three continents attempting to de-gay himself through gay conversion therapy, he came to his senses and came out a quirky queer Quaker concerned with human rights and comedy. He asks himself and his audiences unusual and stimulating questions: Who are the gender outlaws in the Bible? What is a queer response to climate change? and How can comedy help us better understand our most tragic losses? Peterson is on a mission to connect with his audiences in deeply personal ways stirring up hope and purpose in a rapidly changing world. Come to laugh, think deeply, and feel more human.
Experience Peterson and some of his many different characters
Peterson is a person who is so many of the issues that are being discussed in today’s society — LGBT issues, religion issues and climate change — and he’s so relatable and so approachable that he’s able to make the divisions in our country seem irrelevant.
Peterson Toscano led a transformative lunch-time discussion exploring the intersection between race, justice, and climate change, focusing on environmental racism in disaster relief efforts. From beginning to end, Peterson made Bates students feel welcomed, supported, and hopeful - a task nearly impossible when discussing the climate crisis. Peterson Toscano, a true beam of light, touched hearts and minds as he equipped Bates students with the rhetorical tactics and perspective necessary to create a more equitable world, and for that we are so thankful!
He does such a good job at taking really big and scary issues … and is able to present them in a way that is accessible. One of the best things his talks are able to do is focus on the intersections of people’s identities and social justice issues, and not a lot of people are able to do that.
Having Peterson Toscano involved with one's community is like inviting an emissary from some bright, possible future to the conversation pit. Intelligent, compassionate, approachable, Peterson is light in the American darkness, and his performances are touching and his conversations engaging.
Read about Peterson’s presentation of Everything is Connected at Penn State University.