You may have missed the greatest drag show in the city's history Saturday night at Studio 27, because Gorgeous Jared and Coko brought their best to the newly adorned stage at what was once the Trapp Door. If you weren't there, you missed a fire.
"Personality" isn't even close to describing Jared and Coko's stage presence; attitude explosion, is more like it. Hostess Princess Kennedy lit a fire under the crowd as well, closing out the performances. Everyone's backup dancers had sharp command of the choreography and beautiful costumes. Also, Studio 27 has a new stage along the south wall--where Trapp Door's stage was--but added a proscenium (that's the wall/arch surrounding the curtain) so the whole place now feels like bona fide performance space. And that's hopefully what Studio 27 will be: a first-rate stage for Utah drag, burlesque and other performers.
(All these fabulous photos are courtesy of Richard Wolfgramm. Thanks Rich.)
Gorgeous Jared started the night with Lady Gaga's "Teeth."
Unable to be upstaged, Jared was so obviously front and center of five backup dancers, each of whom were hot body shakers themselves.
And as my friend Guy Branum said, while defying drag conventions--as typified by hometown-tranny-done-good Jer Ber Jones--is often just as fun as busting open female/male gender roles, there's still something amazing about pure, unadulterated female beauty. Not every drag queen needs a beard, right? Enter Coko.
Coko performed "Single Ladies," by, who else, Beyonce. Gotta say, I paused for a minute in the opening bars. Who hasn't seen a "Single Ladies" performance on YouTube--like 80 times. There was still something amazing and fresh about seeing a true artist do it live on stage, however.
And rounding out the night was the one, the only, Princess Kennedy, one of the few local drag talents who is brave, tough and smart enough to actually sing, not always lip-sync. I've been encouraging queens to actually vocalize since I was a teenager, but they all seem universally convinced that they can't sing (I've got a secret for you ladies: Madonna can hardly sing, but she makes it work--and so can you!).
What was your favorite event of the Pride Weekend? Have you got fabulous pictures of it? Send them my way with a firstname.lastname@example.org