Monday, February 09, 2009

The alternative Fiesta Queens

Let me make it clear from the start, I have nothing against drag queens. They provide a form of entertainment  that is popular with a certain kind of audience.  I would rank them along with some of the so called 'alterative comics' who have a similarly limited appeal.

This year, for the first time, the organisers of the Torrevieja Carnival decided to host a Drag Queen Competition in the Municipal Theatre and apparently it was a great success. It was billed as the show for the 'Alternative Carnival Queens'.

The Town Council was well represented at the show with Councillor Eduardo Dolon, Councillor Joaquín Albaladejo, Councillor Agostina Esteve and José Manuel Pizana the delegate for Youth, all visible in the front row seats. The Salt Queen, Lisa Schinello, and one of her Damas, Verónica Ballester Trillo, were also present as was the Carnival Queen, Cecilia Laprovítera Silvera, who with Councillor Dolón were two of the members on the jury.

Twelve contestants vied for the prizes; 1,000 euros for the winner, 500 for the runner up and a third prize of 250 euros. With big money at stake, they all made a supreme effort with costumes and dance routines. I imagine it was an over the top spectacle that delighted the audience.

I'm just not sure that a drag queen competition fits in well with the spirit of the Carnival which has a long tradition in the town. It seems to me to take the shine away from the true concept of Festival Queens as ambassadors for the town's young women. 

I doubt whether the idea would catch on in Bigastro for the August Fiesta - I certainly hope not. However,  if it is what Torrevieja wants, then I imagine there will be many more Drag Queen Competitions to come.

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