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Local drag performers continue “slaying the night” virtually

Drag performers from across Lloydminster and beyond are trying to bring some positivity by taking their Halloween show virtual.

Slay the Night has been picking up steam over the past year as a means for not only the Lloydminster audience to engage with the art of drag, but to provide an outlet for Lloydminster’s Queens and Kings to express themselves as well. Like many events in 2020, Slay the Night also saw events they wanted to do, such as a show for Pride Week, have to be either put on hold or adapted around the COVID-19 pandemic and its associated rules.

Co-organizer Jenson Brown, who performs in the show as a Drag King under the name Phoenix, said this was the right time to put on a virtual show for both their performers and the audience.

“The world needs laughter, the world needs smiles, the world needs some sort of outlet and the world needs the arts, it really does. If we can give the world what it needs right now, then that’s what we’re here to do.”

Brown explains that the organizers and performers had several cues to help them along from performers in Edmonton and Saskatoon, who also took their drag events virtual this year.

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Some of this has involved CGI, marrying live elements and pre-recorded ones, and shooting all-out “lipsync” music videos all to air during their live stream to keep the show in time. The show, in addition to some returning Queens, will also feature two new Drag Kings who have joined the event this time around.

Aside from the technical know-how, Slay the Night has been receiving quite a bit of community and sponsor support for Spooktacular 2020, with Brown also noting that all of the organizers brought their various artistic talents to help make the show a reality.

“It means the world to us because the reason we do drag is to put smiles on peoples’ faces, and if we’re not doing that we’re not doing our job, but it’s also very heartening to have that support, and that love, directed back to us as well.”

The virtual drag show is free, with attendees needing to RSVP in advance. Donations to fundraising for future shows are welcomed and will put audience members into a draw for prizes. More details for tickets can be found on the Slay The Night Facebook page. 

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