We GIF You…DragJam

We GIF you…our take on things!

As much as the Hong Kong event schedule would have you think otherwise, you can’t be everywhere all the time. So the PLUG team will be your eyes and ears at relevant queer events in our new series,” we GIF you…” Enjoy our take on your events!

Written by Timothy Loo and John Gil

We first saw what DragJam was all about at last year’s Pink Season closing party, Out in the Open. They put together a Rupaul-style competition for amateur drag performers, including many first-timers. The finals were judged by HK drag-scene stalwart La Chiquitta, world-famous UK singer Sinitta, and our very own PLUG queen, Josie Mitchell!

The crown was eventually awarded to Stephanie Slack, who’s since become a regular PLUG columnist where she applies her mix of drag wit and punny life advice.

Since the birth of DragJam, they’ve opened up their drag family to more members, hosted three events, and been asked to perform at several others. We joined them for the third DragJam party installation at The Factory in Wong Chuk Hang. The event was $150 and included a drink, and we hear they had to start turning people away because of how packed the venue got.

Some highlights:

  • Dorothy from an alternate Oz singing about revenge porn
  • The literal drag-child of Khal Drogo and Khaleesi
  • A Colonel Sanders cameo, yes, the KFC dude
  • Muschi’s handmade gold-and-feather costume MASTERPIECE, stolen by Billy Porter for the MET Gala
  • Audience participation in a kama sutra competition and
  • Kazakstan’s number 2 prostitute

From Tim:
“I’ll be honest, I’ve only watched two episodes of RPDR. I love what drag has done for our community and the recent bridge it’s formed for allies, but I have my own personal reservations about it’s relevance (standalone article to follow). I had to shove all of those reservations up my ass though, because DragJam challenged the stereotypes I myself, as a friggin’ gay man, had placed on drag. I resonated with their artsier style, the DIY-ness, the rough edges and sense of queer empowerment I walked away with.”

From John:
“As the singer in a band, I don’t always love ‘lip-syncing’. But after 2 minutes of DragJam, I was hooked and couldn’t stop enjoying myself. Punny, daring, fun, but also relevant and poignant. They transported all of us to this magical land where gender is never binary and where we were all part of their colourful family. You know you’re doing something right when the crowd that comes to see your show is young, hip, beautiful, queer, mixed-race and ready to have a good time. I give it 5/5 stars and would definitely attend again.”

What we loved about it:

  • Drag realness: There was a refreshing sincerity to it. It was by no means perfect, but that added to its authenticity. One duo opened up about the women they look up to, without making it a joke.
  • It was QUEER: they blurred gender lines. While some drag-purists may argue this was more performance theatre, having a giant bearded lady, drag king and straight women perform does more to blur gender lines than your average drag show.
  • BYOB! It was overall extremely affordable; we’re not fans of cost-prohibitive events.
  • Crowd diversity: age, sex, gender, orientation, race- all colours of the rainbow present and accounted for.
  • Their message: be someone you’re “not allowed” to be.

Catch DragJam’s next performance at LoveFest for Stonewall this coming June 29th.

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