Yep! That totally sums up last week. Eat. Sleep. Pageants. Repeat. This was my first MAJ duty as the first ever Miss Diva USofA and it couldn’t have been more magical, inspiring (and tiring), or more kismeticly bound than it was.
There were 23 contestants in Miss Gay USofA Classic and 41 in Miss and the competition was F I E R C E. After each contest was narrowed down to a top 12, only 2 queens in their respective categories took home the crown.
Congrats to Chevelle Brooks Miss Gay USofA Classic and Jenna Skyy Miss Gay USofA!!!!!!!!!!
You can find out all the deets on where these two queens will be holding court throughout the year at the official USofA website www.usofa.org.
Before i dive into what i learned from a week in drag , i want to take the opportunity to give a VERY special heartfelt shout out to my bestie, my sister, my mother, my queen, Jenna Skyy, on capturing the most prestigious title in the biz.
i’ve always known you were THE queen; now the whole world knows it.
And because nothing screams LIFE LEARNING EXPERIENCES like 7 days in full on drag mode amid the toughest drag crowd in the biz, here are 5 little drag performance gems that i sifted out from last week.
1. There will always be glitter. Everywhere. In the car. On the body. In the eyebrows. Even after days and days of scrubbing. But you know what? It’s evidence that you are doing everything in your power to make the world a more sparkly place. Glitter on baby and leave nothing but a trail of sparkle behind you!!
2. Just because they don’t tip doesn’t (necessarily) mean they don’t like you. #truth Sometimes the amount + stack of compliments out weigh and out worth the wad of dollar bills. The audience will sometimes tip out of obligation, but compliments on your performance and how you’ve inspired them in some way shape or form more often than not come from the heart.
3. You can never predict what the crowd will live for and what will fall flat. The only thing you can control is YOUR energy + YOUR performance. The audience’s reaction is totally out of your control. BUT if you keep up the fierceness and the performance fire chances are it will become contagious and blow through the crowd like a wildfire. Burn baby BURN!
4. It gets easier (aka you become more efficient) the more you do it. Case in point:
Sunday Drag day 1 & 2: Mug = 2 hours
Drag day 6: Mug = 1 hour
After 6 days of painting my face, i finally mastered the illusive art of painting a quick, but solid drag mug. And minus the watering eyes (and a pair of lavender contacts) i really can’t tell the difference. Can you? Moral of the story: the more you do anything/something the more efficient you become without effecting the end result. That’s magic within itself!
5. You have to love drag to keep doing it. Seriously. Drag is a labor of love and without a true passion and hunger for it you’ll never evolve from where you started nor will you have the driving force to continue. This art rarely gives back to the artist in ways other mediums do. As Merce Cunningham so eloquently describes about dance, so could be said about drag:
“You have to love dancing to stick to it. It gives you nothing back, no manuscripts to store away, no paintings to show on walls and maybe hang in museums, no poems to be printed or sold, nothing but that single fleeting moment when you feel alive.”
However every once in a blue moon a few magical moments can be found in which drag does indeed reciprocate the artisans love of the art form in tangible (and not so tangible ways): in the energy of the crowd’s chanting of your name, the applause and ovation at the end of the performance, or in a not-so-subtle piece of head jewelry that understatedly says, i am the queen of the world.
Here’s to finding your crowning moment!
Love, light, + lashes,
P.S. Want more USofA + pageant goodness? Check out my never-ending list of undying gratitude when i won my Diva USofA title.