Last year during Pride week in Montreal a new event was born and was such a raging success they brought it back bigger and better for the 2017 edition. Reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race, which has been running for nine seasons, has been such a success that it has brought drag queens to the world. With this increased exposure drag queens are now treated like real queens – revered and cause plenty of bowing whenever they appear. Programmers at Fierte/Pride in Montreal have jumped on the RuPaul bandwagon to bring us Drag Superstars.
This year there were plenty of Canadian drag queens performing alongside the RuPaul alums. some of the finalists of the best drag queens in Canada competition were there demonstrating there is no shortage of talent north of the border.
It was the former RuPaul Drag Race contestants who owned the evening. Drag queens Tatiana, Peppermint, Naomi Smalls, Raja, Derrick Barry, and the incredible Sasha Velours all had the crowd moving and hollering. a great vibe was created due to the fun music, great costumes and amazing moves while in stilettos and tight dresses. These ladies are all true professionals.
Stand outs on the evening were Peppermint (runner up of the recently finished Season 9), who did not lip sync, but performed her own vocals. Peppermint is part of the growing ranks of trans women who are competing on Drag Race. Her vocals are not anything to write home about, but her costumes, stage presence and humour make her memorable. Then season 4 runner up and RuPaul’s All Stars Season One winner Chad Michaels came out and I thought I was watching Cher. Performing to Cher’s songs “Woman’s World” and “Strong Enough” it was like watching the woman herself from look, walk, costume, and mannerisms. Incredible! Continuing along that vein, Derrick Barr, from Season 8 of Drag Race, has built a career and following as a Britney Spears impersonator. She performed to a medley of “Toxic”, “I’m A Slave 4 U”, “Work B*$ch”, and “Womanizer”. With her background in gymnastics she was one of the better dancers of the evening. Finally the strongest of the evening and who got the biggest reaction from the crows was Sasha Velour. First of all, her look is very different as she often performs with a bald head, which she shaved in honor of her deceased mother who underwent chemo treatment for cancer. Definitely stands out in the crowd. That unique look (great costumes!) and the high level of performance makes for a winning combo.
The two co-hosts, Barbada (the winner of the 2017 Mx Fierte Canada Pride competition that took place in
April) and Rita Baga, were amazing. Funny! In both languages! They made fun of the 450 area code, Americans and even Justin Bieber. The two also did a number of their own. Fun and played well off of each other. Mad skillz as hosts!
On a perfect weather evening (not too warm and no rain) 15,000 came to the show which shows that it is super popular and don’t bet against there being a Drag Superstars show at Pride 2018.