Drag dominates at WLU
Glitter, pink cocktails and gender-bending performances filled the Turret last Saturday night along with the large, enthusiastic crowd who came out to support Drag Domination, a second annual event organized by the Rainbow Centre.
The all-ages event is one of the largest drag events the tri-city area has to offer. The returning Miss Drew and many other talented local performers including Mr. and Mrs. Tri-Pride, Parker South and Jasmine Flowers, entertained the audience with performances well into the night.
The event was held for the first time as a fundraiser for Tri-Pride, the LGBTQ festival for Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge. Gen Ellis, also known as Parker South and Mr. Tri-Pride as well as the main organizer of the event, reported that the event raised approximately $500 through both a raffle and 50/50 draw. Raffle prizes included gift certificates for a tattoo and food prizes.
The booming evening broke the Tri-Pride fundraising record, and Ellis could not be more proud. “We really want to thank everyone for coming out and supporting Tri-Pride, and especially Miss Drew who donated her time and talent to the show,” said Ellis, who is also the Imperial Prince Royal of the 17th reign of the Imperial Court of Hamilton-Wentworth, a chapter of the International Court System that supports GLBT communities.
When asked about what she does to transform from Gen Ellis into Parker South, Ellis replied, “It’s really a mental thing; you have to psych yourself out to get up there.” Drag is a performative method used to “bend” gender stereotypes in a manner that is creative and positive and the show was certainly a perfect representation of that.
This year the show was quite well represented by both drag kings as well as drag queens, performing crowd favourites by artists such as N*SYC and Bon Jovi. Miss Drew opened with a fierce performance of Jennifer Holliday’s “A Woman’s Got the Power” and finished her set with an emotional rendition of “Endangered Species” and “Proud and Beautiful” done back-to-back that set the crowd head-over-heels.
The bar sold a signature cocktail for the evening, the pink dominatrix, which was a combination of fruit juices, raspberry and apple vodkas presented in chic martini glasses.
Christina Borys, lead organizer of the event and literary and resource co-ordinator for the Rainbow Centre, was ecstatic about the results of the fundraiser and the support shown by the Laurier community.
Performers Victoria Parks and Jasmine Flowers commented on the impressive spirit shown by Laurier students at the event. “Laurier is definitely more accepting than [the University of Waterloo],” Parks commented.
While UW has a drag show, the turnout was much larger at Laurier and there were more performances in comparison to the hour-long show put on by UW.
The show will be running again next year as requested by Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union and popular demand.