Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Night of 1,000 Gowns with Cyndi Lauper

On Saturday March 31, I attended the Night of 1,000 Gowns, the annual Drag Fundraising Ball at The Broadway Ballroom in the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square. The event is an all-out Glamour-Fest formal dinner with dancing in a spacious grand hall. At the end of the evening there was an actual Royal Coronation Ceremony that took place. Elected Monarchs are sovereignty crowned Emperor and Empress of New York. This year the honor went to a Drag Diva with a small name, B (henceforth known as Empress B) but with big jewels and a bigger heart. The new Emperor is Craig Hollywood, a gorgeous big Bear of a guy who I always loved! The beneficiary of the Gala was PFLAG (Parents and Friends/Family of Lesbians and Gays) and the special guest star was one of that orgainzations biggest and most famous supporters, Pop icon Cyndi Lauper. When I first arrived in my gown with gold hologram spangles and bell sleeves, I ran into some media crews and I proceeded to give Celebrity interviews about the event and about NYC Drag culture for the local news teams. My news camera crew was off for the evening, so I came as a guest. It was nice being on the other side of the microphone for a change! I ran into my colleague Cognac Wellington, hostess and reporter for a party news program on cable TV. When Cognac started to interview me, Cyndi Lauper made her entrance and there was quite a stir! Ms. Lauper was not giving the Press any interviews, but when she saw me, she came running up to us. She told me she remembered and loved the interview she gave for Under the Pink Carpet. And Cognac was lucky enough to be the only person who was able to get a sound byte or interview with the Pop Star!

I loved being at a magnificent party with all of my Drag Diva Sisters and seeing all the fabulous and creative ensembles. There were more Jewels, sequins, feathers, fur, hairspray and (the most important accessory)- fierce attitude - than at a Gabor Family Reunion! There were also plenty of Men who dress like Men, who looked snazzy and sharp in their tuxedos and dress military uniforms. Plus, there were also some GGs (Genetic born Girls) who got all dolled up with fun, fashion and estrogen. One beautiful GG was famous fetish designer The Baroness who looked divine in gown made of pink latex! Among the attendees were Charles Busch, Julie Halston, Cabaret Icon Barbara Cook, burlesque diva Dirty Martini, Drag Queens Lady Bunny, Bianca Del Rio, Carmella Cann, Millie Sheaintwright, Flotilla DeBarge, J. Roy Helland from Hollywood's The Birdcage and the legendary Rollerina. Ms. Rollerina is among the first celebrity Drag Queens symbolizing the 1970s Disco era in NYC. She no longer dances at Studio 54 or roller skates in the streets of Greenwich Village, but she still is going strong and knows how to have a good time. My Drag Diva partygoer friends included: Cissy Galore, Bernda Bond, Loopee, Jacquline Jonee, Rita Petite, Wendy Darling, Rochelle Nicole, Lady Julie, Cassandra Hilton and countless others. My Men friends included: Ryan Wolowski (Out and About TV), Frank DeCaro (Sirius Satellite Radio), Bruce-Michael Gelbert (Q News), Drew Tagliabue (Executive Director PFLAG), Michael Mulvaney (Rainbow Connection TV), Will Clark (Porno Bingo) and many more!

Photos: Being Interviewed with Cyndi Lauper by Cognac Wellington; Barbara Cook; Empress B and Emperor Craig Hollywood; Lady Julie; Frank DeCaro of Sirius Satellite Radio; Bruce-Michael Gelbert with Clover and Ryan Wolowski; Dirty Martini; J. Roy Helland from The Birdcage; Rollerina.