It’s official. I am now finished with my performance year in PDX 2010!
Miss Thing on the 19th was a blast, literally. After spending a month thinking about what I wanted to do it took 2.5 weeks to wrangle together a mini stage, a fan, 2 dancers, a make-up artist and costume and hair assistant, a video artist, another costume designer AND a hat maker AND a live musician who also remixed my songs. The piece I decided to go with was a mash-up of Swan Lake and Bjork’s Pluto having Transformation be my theme. I feel Transformation is often subtext to most of my work, especially in the drag/glamour realm, but this show was special. Miss Thing was supposed to be my Swansong my finale my LAST performance in PDX. I had dreams of winning Miss Thing with my ambitious and visually stunning concept, killer dance moves and next level make up.
Well, I had a ambitious and visually stunning concept- 2 big powerful fans, a mini-stage on the main stage, an 8 minute number accompanied by simultaneous video projection an improv synth intro and outro and two amazing dancers! My concept was to show my face as a boy on video, move through the performance as a femme-swan (and boy was I!) and then let the video show my full transformation, as only video magic can do… as a very intense strong and emotional swan/bird/two-spirit creature.
Well, all of that happened! It’s just too bad my DVD audio skipped so bad in the beginning we had to restart mid performance. Which, in effect is fine with me because I got to milk the stage for that much longer, and I got to take an even deeper breath and settle into my scene with greater body-presence. The DVD still skipped at places at the song but I knew that was going to happen to a degree. My dancers are pro’s and they just rolled with the punches, kisses, and strobes. The piece was dramatic and emotional and people have been telling me over the last two weeks that they were moved by it. Some say it was like a moving painting, and others just look at me funny like… “Gurly what the fuck do you do to think of shit like that…” The hostess Heklina came out and said “WOW that was really GAYYYY!” Not the most positive response in my opinion (not that it being super gay is a bad thing or untrue) but because I feel my piece had very little to do with sexual orientation and entertainment and so much more to do with glamour, transformation and human potential.
I remember falling down during a high kick and I remember my dancers throwing baby powder and feathers and mylar and balloons into my 4ft drum fan and the judges just clearing a way out !!!
After the number was over I felt a tingle of relief, but to be honest I was a little out-of-this-world with the excitement and intensity of the night, that day and really for the whole ritual build up of that month.
Not to mention I had to sit through 4+ hours of make-up 470 rhinestones glued to my back and arms and legs and enjoy competing against many of my good comrades and friends.
In the end I placed 3rd. Right after Chi-chi and Chonga (the crowd favorite) and our surprise and beautiful winner Miss Sally Ingus Wilder. I look forward to seeing you queens in SF for the Trannyshack show, yes I plan to be there but not as a performer…