The NSFW Show @ Harley’s Underground 02.24

It was my absolute pleasure to host the second installment of the NSFW Show at Harley’s Underground this past Friday, February 24. Peep the gallery below– thanks Sam and Warren!

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Five Black Drag Kings You Ought to Know…!

In honor of Black History Month, I wanted to take a few minutes to pay homage to some of the amazing POC drag kings that I’ve come across doing their thing across the US.

Miles Long (East Los Angeles, CA)

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Photo Credit: Carrie Strong

Miles Long is a pageant-winning West Coast king who performs regularly at Landon Cider’s Drag King Explosion in Los Angeles, CA. He is Mister Oklahoma USofA MI 2016 and was featured in the drag king documentary The Making of a King. Follow him on Instagram at @the_mileslong and add him on Facebook here.

 

 

 

 

Po’ Chop (Chicago, IL)

12109079_894025937312424_5716734996649008404_nPo’ Chop is a burlesque king hailing from Chicago who is renowned for his provocative, political drag. A trained dancer, Po’ Chop is a festival veteran, the recipient of the 2015 Chances Dances Mark Aguhar Memorial Grant and a performer residency at Links Hall, and a board member of Jeezy’s Juke Joint, now in its sixth year as a showcase of some of the best in black burlesque from across the US. You can view more of his work on his official website, www.itspochop.com, and on Facebook.

 

Bellagio Showers (New Orleans, LA)

13900056_1769769483306374_8259439313384751533_nBellagio Showers is a product of cycle 4 of Vinsantos’ Drag Workshop who, despite being a relatively new king, has made a name for himself in the New Orleans scene. He has performed alongside Big Freedia and was recommended to me by a college friend as her “favorite drag king of all time.” (Of all time!)  Check out his work on Facebook here.

 

 

 

 

Alexander Cameron (Cincinnati, OH)

16651943_704916653015266_1146418127_n This dapper Cincinnati-based gentleman is a dynamic costumer, a charming performer, and super nice guy. He has been selected for both the 2015 and 2016 Austin International Drag Festival and will appear later this year as part of the Fierce! Queer International Burlesque Festival. In regards to being a POC and drag king, Alexander says, “In our current social climate, being a queer, female, POC makes every day a stressful one. Thankfully, this community has come together in solidarity, fully supportive of the disenfranchised.” You can view his work on Facebook and Instagram at @alexcameronmi.

 

 

Switch the Boi Wonder (Chicago, IL)

16298546_1528324917196829_443783792006391227_nSwitch the Boi Wonder has been performing as a drag king for over a decade. Also a regular featured performer at Jeezy’s Juke Joint, Switch is a smooth ladies’ man who challenges notions of masculinity and femininity with his gender-bending burlesque routines. Find him on Facebook here.

 

 

Is there anyone I’ve forgotten? Any black drag kings that you feel deserve the spotlight? Let me know in the comments below.

Happy Black History Month!

 

E

2016: A Year in Review & Updates

Holy crap! 2016, thank you. You were one of the most productive years of my entire performance career.

A few highlights, in no particular order:

  • The Austin, Texas International Drag Festival — performiScreenshot_20160501-192439~2ng alongside some of the most talented people I’ve ever shared a stage with, meeting Sammy Silver, Spikey Van Dykey, Laganja Estranga, Colin Acumen, K. James, Vigor Mortis, Goldie Peacock, and a host of other amazing drag performers. And of course eating some bomb-ass Mexican food.
  • Forming the House of TBD, my beautiful and amazing drag house, and working closely with my lovely sisters and drag son.
  • Unleashing my inner Joan Crawford as Mrs. Forrest in Urban Aphrodite’s Psycho Beach Party.
  • Co-producing and performing in five mainstage shows with Qi-POW! Burlesque & Cabaret, including my favorite to date, Seance. We showed our city that we can do both tongue-in-cheek and sophisticated burlesque and sold out almost every show.

So what’s new, then?

The big news is that I am currently competing in the first-ever televised competition for drag kings, King Me: Rise of a Drag King. This bi-weekly competition will culminate in a cash prize and a cross-country tour for the winner. I am one of two kings competing from Asia and one of three kings not representing the UK or US. It’s kind of a big deal! You can watch the episodes from their Youtube channel here.

Otherwise, we’re back in the swing of things for Qi-POW! and the House of TBD. We are currently working on our eleventh QP! production, Professor E’s Museum of Time, and just added two performers to our House of TBD roster: Erica Balenciaga and Dorian T. Fisk.

Participating in King Me has me thinking a lot about my performance goals for 2017 and beyond. I really feel like performance-wise, drag is my home– it is the crossroads of so much that I love, including costuming, acting, dance, and music. The great drag artists that I admire are the ones that are polished but still push the envelope; this year, I want to beef up my styling, polish up all of my old acts, and conquer my personal beast of burden: choreography. I’d also like to add two specialty skills to my resume: playing an instrument and using a whip. I’m hoping to add another festival to my performance resume, with an eventual (bucket list) goal of headlining a festival some day.

What are your performance goals, both short and long term? Let me know in the comments.

Until next time. ❤