Pacific Standard magazine’s Mac McClelland has a great recounting of the Miss Gay Latina Pageant held at Diana Wortham Theatre in downtown Asheville earlier this month. Titled Queens of the South, the story really captures the crazy incongruities of the show:
Probably these contestants are not polished enough to win a national female-impersonation title. When an entertainer from Chicago who does have a national title, Miss Continental 2013-2014, takes the stage, the slickness and superior choreography of her lip-synch stand out in glaring big-city contrast. But the audience doesn’t mind. “It’s different than a night on the town [in Asheville], like theater or dinner,” understates one guy when I ask him during intermission if he’s here because he knows anyone involved with the show. He doesn’t, but that doesn’t stop him from yelling “Woooo-OOOOOOO-oooooo” at more or less every turn in each performance. He ended up coming the first year by some sort of chance, and has been every year since. He was here the year Andie MacDowell was around (MacDowell, then a local, co-produced a documentary about the 3rd annual Miss Gay Latina Asheville, which appears to be in indefinite post-production). He says it used to be even weirder. “One year, this girl came out in Japanese make-up and sang ‘I Will Always Love You’ to a baby, then powder blew out of her hair and like 40 babies dropped from the ceiling,” he says. “One lady slit her wrists on stage and rolled around in her blood. Another did this scene about a jilted lover and she killed her husband. It was very dramatic. Like a telenovela.”
Click over to read the full story.
Thanks to loyal reader Chris for the heads-up on this story.
Interesting article, particularly the parts that were actually about the pageant and how it relates to and what it means as a part of society — especially as a part of Southern society. The res of the article though… typical big-city sneerfest at small-city/small-town America.