Lipstick, lashes, love

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Trinity Carey

Children to seniors filled the Vandament Arena on Friday, Feb. 3 to see the colored wigs, eccentric costumes and stellar lip syncing and dance performances that made up NMU’s 21st Annual Drag Show. Seven professional drag queens and kings came from around the midwest to perform including Valentino, Aurora Gozmic, The Vixen, Lady Ivory, JAC Stringer “Midwest Genderqueer,” Simon Gaiden, Lucy Stoole and a performance from NMU student and winner of the amateur drag show, Coco Benz.

Each drag performer had multiple numbers filled with singing, dancing and interaction with the crowd. Attendees went straight to the stage to tip their favorite performers and were given dances and pecks on the cheek in return.

Drag queen performer, Aurora Gozmic said it’s important for students to experience a different culture than their own.

“It’s a subculture drag. I’m really happy to bring it here and expose the students to it because there are lot of kids that don’t really know of it or want to try it, so being able to talk to us and watch us do what we do for a living is really constructive and great,” Gozmic said. “I’m happy that NMU has this.”

Gozmic, a Marquette local, got into drag when the scene here was not as prominent. She loves how the community here has grown, but the heart of drag is in Chicago, she said.

“It’s been going on for 21 years now and I think it will just keep getting bigger and bigger, especially having queens come in from out-of-state and being able to really push the show to a different level,” Gozmic said. “My favorite part is the audience and getting them pumped up and hearing them scream over a number.”

The annual drag show brings new atmospheres and opportunities to the Marquette area, said NMU freshman and CLS genetics major, Grace Heaton.

“The positive energy here, it’s definitely a unique experience. NMU has a very positive community for the LGBT community. This [drag show] always helps,” Heaton said. “The show opens up opportunities for people who may not have a chance in a positive community especially coming to college.”