Premiering March 30 on ABC Me, First Day, is a new children’s drama series about a transgender girl navigating her first year of high school.
Starring transgender activist and actor, Evie McDonald as Hannah Bradford, First Day will air as a four part, half hour episode series and will explore some of the difficulties transgender kids face at school.
First Day is McDonald’s first acting role, however, she has been involved in a number of transgender awareness projects including the 2017 campaign to remove the family court from the gender affirmation process for transgender children.
In an interview with Star Observer, McDonald discussed just how important visibility projects such as First Day are in changing social perceptions about what it’s like to be transgender.
“I want to help make it easier for other people to come out as trans in the future. Being transgender is not a choice – and we’ve been around forever,” McDonald told Star Observer.
When McDonald came out and transitioned in primary school, positive media around trans people was very difficult to come by. McDonald hopes that First Day will help show people that trans people are just like everyone else.
“I like donuts, I like mermaids and playing with my friends. I’m human just like everyone else,” she says.
The series also features Isabel Burmester (The Hunting), Brenna Harding (Puberty Blues), Elena Liu (Girls Change the World) and Jo Hunt (Here Come the Habibs).
First Day is written and directed by award-winning writer Julie Kalceff, who has been working in the film and television industry for over 15 years. Kalceff was initially commissioned by the ABC to write, direct and produce a stand-alone pilot episode of First day as part of the ABC’s celebrations for International Day of the Girl in 2017.
The pilot episode won the MIPCOM Diversify TV Excellence Award for Kids’ Programming and the Gender Equity Prize at the prestigious Prix Jeunesse International Children’s Television Festival. It was with this success that First Day was commissioned into a short children’s TV series.
Kalceff told the Star Observer she was inspired by the story of a family friend and wanted to write a series that could help other families in similar situations. While writing First Day, Kalceff sought the advice and guidance of young transgender people and their families. It was through these discussions and collaborations that the script for First Day was written.
Kalceff acknowledged the importance of having a trans voices in the mainstream media:
“Many [trans] stories come from the conservative media so we need to balance those stories with positive stories such as this,”
Both McDonald and Kalceff couldn’t be prouder of this series which will soon hit our screens. Although targeted at young children, First Day is a must watch all members of our community.
Starts Monday 30 March at 4.30pm on ABC ME + iview.