Halifax has a long history of drag entertainment, beginning with production shows back in the days of The Turret and Rumours and continuing in history through shows at such bars as StudioBar, ReflectionsCabaret, VorTex, ClubNrg and BlueMoon. Many of the original divas of Halifax have moved on with other things in their lives and no longer perform, however many still remain to entertain us with their performances and wit... with a new cast of rising stars currently taking to the stage. Drag in Halifax has evolved to include several different venues for entertainment: Sunday night shows at ReflectionsCabaret catering to the young and university crowds, and ISCANS fundraisers throughout Halifax featuring a mixture of Halifax's top performers. You may have seen some of these entertainers compete in DragPageants and perform in regular shows in our city's GayBars - leave your comments on the queens by clicking 'Comments On' when you visit their pages or submit photos to mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Someone writes: Can someone explain why drag queens in Halifax keep getting longer names but if you look the names are the same as current & previous drag queens. If you travel to other cities you find that the queens are creative with their names, they aren't a mile long and some of the drag names used in Halifax are simply sexual slang which isn't professional at all. Its not a put down to those who I've described but simply a curiosity.
Someone writes: Queens (especially those within the International Court System) will often give each other their last names as an honour, to show that they are associated with them. Generally it is the more experienced queens that give their last names to the less so. Queens generally just use their first and original last name when being introduced. There are some really creative names in Halifax, some more sexual. Both work. You just have to see our queens in action to see why they choose the names they do.
Thanks for replying!
It has been bothering me as of late to hear of drag queens in this city refer to themselves as professional drag artists. Since being a professional automatically projects you to a different level of perception, perhaps it would do you all well to note; if you're going to call yourself a professional, perhaps you ought to actually be one. The following definitions are from Merriam Webster's Online Dictionary 1 a : of, relating to, or characteristic of a profession b : engaged in one of the learned professions c (1) : characterized by or conforming to the technical or ethical standards (ethical standards for drag - That's actually funny when you think about it) of a profession (2) : exhibiting a courteous, conscientious, and generally businesslike manner in the workplace
2 a : participating for gain or livelihood in an activity or field of endeavor often engaged in by amateurs b : having a particular profession as a permanent career c : engaged in by persons receiving financial return 3 : following a line of conduct as though it were a profession
Since very few in this city conduct themselves in a professional manner, and fewer still are not earning at least 35% of their annual income from performing in drag, then perhaps they should find new way to describe their level of expertise. How about on a scale of 1 to 10 ; 1 being the worst and ten being the best.
For all intents and purposes, LuLuLaRude was one of the best local examples of what "professional" is should be the bench mark by which all others are measured.
Thanks... Nancy Matthews
Someone writes: Nancy.. you have too much time on your hands.. worry about what your doing for the community, rather than if a drag queen can call herself a "professional" or not.
I take offense to "professional drag queen", as I am a drag queen myself. Drag is meant to be fun, and if you get paid for doing it then good for you. But hunnie, no one here in Halifax is a professional drag queen... no one is doing it full time as their job/career, or at least I don't see anyone out there almost every night doing shows and getting paid for them. Also, just because someone hosts a show, doesn't make them a professional. Just because I do my own taxes and take care of my own finances, does that make me a professional accountant? I think not.
I had the greatest respect for Lulu and I also do for Dita, but not every drag queen wants to be a female impersonator. Some of us like the bold over the top drag, bold outfits and make up. That is what I do and what I love, I respect my female impersonator sisters as they are amazing at what they do. But if all drag queens had to act and look like that to get respected, then drag would be extremely boring!
Are Drag Queens a plague on the Community?
Halifax has seen a massive increase in the munber of drag queens in the bar and community scene. At the same time, the life seems to be draining out of the Community. Are the two coincidental?
Halifax cannot sustain a thriving bar scene. Reflections only stays around since it is a straight bar with "novelty" entertainment (ie drag queens). NRG, Toolbox and Vortex closed. Only Menz and Blue moon (as a resurrected drag bar) are left. Menz is beginning to suffer. It used to be a bar for men. Now it is Menz with added drag queens.
Have you noticed how the leathermen and the bears seem to have faded from existence. And the "older" members of the community. And how many people move out of the city to get away from poor opportunities and a poisonous community?
Many people avoid the bar scene because they are fed up with the "attitude" and bullshit. Much of this seems to come from drag queens who feel they have a right to go anywhere and say anything to anyone. Yes they entertain, and yes they love to fundraise, but many people don't want to have to put up with them in your face all the time. Just on stage if you please.
So, is it a coincidence that when drag queens move in and breed, the rest of the community moves out? No wonder Halifax has such a struggling community. The community "outside" the scene is far bigger, but hidden and fragmented as they don't want the crap.
Any thoughts. I'm waiting to be shot down in flames over this one. Damocles
I agree that most drag queens have nasty attitudes. There are a few out there who are funny, and can make you laugh, then are those who think because they put on make up, a wig and a dress that they are a queen, and suddenly have power over the rest of the gay people. SORRY, NOT, N whatever queen lingo you want to use. Then we have the queens who just want to cause shit for everyone (we also have these people in the non-queen part of our community.) As a member of the "older" crowd(35+ in age) i don't go out all that much anymore, not because of the queens, they don't scare me anymore now then they did 20 years ago. My time has come and gone for the bar scene, the scene is for the younger fags to enjoy and the old fags who like little boys. It would be nice to be able to say MEN ONLY no queens allowed, but do we let them in when they are not in drag, do say you have to be of the older crowd to come in, no young kids trying to bum drinks off ya, what about no fat people and no skinny people, no fems (there goes alot of the leather guys, sorry guys but you guys get very soft after a few drinks.)
My advice is to accept the queens for who they are, and have the guts to tell them to piss off when they bugging you, or better be a "man" and hit them. watch out some hit back lol. Bars come and Bars go, our community will live on with or without them, but we will lose a big part of ourselves if we kick out the queens, fats, fems, skinnys, old, young, and our bothers the dykes. We are GAY, we are FAMILY, and god knows that familys dont always see eye to eye. But we dont give up on each other. If you dont see your friends out ask them to come out, if they say no because of the queens, tell them you will protect them from those nasty bitches. Dont call me unless its NEW YEARS, CANADA DAY, PRIDE, ALL HALLOWS EVE, or something else special.
Signed, an old fat fem leather bear queen (i've been one or all at one point in my life)