Less bitching, more glamour

Less bitching, more glamour

It’s taken all the strength and energy I can muster to crawl to the laptop and write this week’s instalment of Dragstar.

Each finger feels like it weighs at least a tonne as I punch key after key, trying to form words that are coherent. My head is throbbing, my joints are aching and my mind feels like mud. It is the price of glamour – but one I seem willing to pay year after year.

Yes, another DIVA has passed – and I am not sure if it is the night itself that has caused me so much pain and tension, or the running around preparing for the event.

This year I was lucky enough to be asked to host the event with partner in crime Penny Tration. The board decided to do a few things differently this year, one being to let Penny and me write our own scripts for the evening. In past years, all the hostesses would have a professional script writer on hand to draft the script for the evening – but this time it was all up to us.

Hence my preparations for the evening started over a month ago, so the words could be checked to make sure they were edgy, but unlikely to step on too many toes.

When you combine the pressure of script writing with the need to come up with three different and sensational outfits for the evening, is it any wonder I am tired and drained and my head feels like it is getting stirred with a large stick?

Of course there were a few small hiccups, but you have to expect that with any live show.

And now they are done and dusted, the question is being asked: are the DIVAs worth the pain and organisation?

Given drag is an industry brimming with bitchiness and competition, is it worth celebrating?

I guess there are a few schools of thought out there – but what do you think?

What was concerning to me was the length some drag artists went to in order to impress. I noticed some spent thousands on a campaign to pick up a gong. I saw other showgirls crying – sometimes because they were nervous about not winning an award, and sometimes because the award they were coveting slipped through their fingers.

This, from where I sit, is worrying behaviour. I understand competition is a healthy thing, but do we really need to be putting all that pressure on ourselves for an award?

Sure, the awards help keep the showgirls on their toes and contribute to that constant pressure to improve the shows we create and perform, but these forms of desperation are neither pretty nor funny. Perspective is definitely needed.

We should also keep in mind that drag is a very broad term and the judges – who have a very thankless job – have a lot of ground to cover. Their choices – whether we agree or not – are made without malice or favouritism.

Perhaps one way to dissolve the bitching and get these awards back on track would be to focus on the glamour and the networking the evening offers and put the actual awards to the side. That way everyone would be happy and the bitchiness would subside.

When it comes down to it, we are all getting paid to work in an industry we love, and that is by far the most important thing.

CORRECTION Last week I stated Bite Me was a sponsor of the Food and Wine Fair. I was mistaken and I am sorry. They are not a sponsor but will be at the festival.

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