Spotlight on… Drag Bingo

Drag Bingo is an event that takes place every Tuesday starting at 8 pm upstairs at Mad Donna’s. The Drag Queens host this event and throughout there are people playing bingo and sometimes trivia. Paige Turner, who was voted the best drag queen three years running, and Raquel Redd, who will soon be in a film about drag queens, were the host. Along with bingo and trivia, they also put on different performances.

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We went on a night where the theme was Halloween because Halloween was that week.  In result, there were people came in dressed up as different things. It made us think if some of these people were really drag or if that was there costume?

Drag Bingo was a new event/experience for Christa, Paris, Marqu’es, and me. Honestly a few of us were kind of nervous to walk up the stairs because we didn’t know what to expect, (except Marqu’es because she’s not scared of anything) but once we were upstairs it became a lot more comfortable.

It was very surprising to see all the different ages and varieties of people that attended this event. There were both men and women of all races and ages. The one that surprised us the most was that a young girl around the age of 12. She was there with her mom and sister.  After observing the young girl and he family, we realized that the were friends with the drag queens and knew them personally.  A lot of people this night seemed to be regulars but then there were also some new comers (like us) that they called out for being there and asked to come back.  There were also people from out of town who came just  to experience this event.

Something very interesting that happened to us when we walked in and they figured out that we were basketball players: they asked us over the microphone if “we were together as in like dating or together as in just friends”. We believe that they assumed that we were really dating; did they ask us this because of the stereotype or what society thinks of female basketball players? Yes, we do beileve so.  What do you guys think?

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This event that we experienced could be connected to the concepts we have discussed about transgendering, transsexuals, and cross-dressers. These drag queens gender did not match their original sex and gender according to societal norms. Within this, they were also displayed as cross-dressers. This concept of drag queens and transgendering/cross-dressing is the complete opposite of the down low culture, which was depicted in the article we read as a class, “Down Low Culture”. These men, or women as some would like to  be called, are openly expressive about their activities and sexualities; however, in the down low culture, men claim what they are not in order to receive heterosexual privilege. They are also reluctant to claim being bisexual or transgendered because they feel as if their masculinity will be spoiled. While at drag bingo, the drag queens never addressed whether they would rather be called females or males so this raised the question of how they felt their sexual identities were defined. Both have boyfriends, but are they considered male or female based on their actions or desires ?

While we were there we got to watch two performance, the first one by Paige Turner, who is voted one of the best drag queens for the past three years and the second one by Raquel Redd, who is being filmed for a documentary about drag queens. Both of these performances especially Raquel Redd’s performance to “I Put A Spell On You” made Christa and Paris extremely uncomfortable. When we asked why they felt uncomfortable, they shared that they felt that it did not agree with their religion and religious beliefs.

An exciting thing that happened was that both Paris and Marques won Bingo towards the end. They both got to choose out of multiple prizes from cozies to condoms to stickers. When Marques won she decided to choose the playboy condoms pictured below. Then when Paris won she selected out of multiple stickers and chose the one the said “I love Double D’s” lol.

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Drag bingo goes on every Tuesday night at Mad Donna’s and we highly encourage everyone to go experience it at least once.

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