March 2, Adela Pfaff PZ ’19 and Nick Endicott PZ ’20 hosted the first drag event for the 5Cs at Pitzer College’s Shakedown Cafe to combat the lack of drag culture.
The event, called “Sad, Sad Tears of a Clown Drag Ball,” was advertised on Facebook by the hosts as an opportunity to “subvert Eurocentric, masculinist, cisgender, white, hetero-patriarchy by celebrating queer culture.”
They featured a costume and makeup contest as well as a lip sync battle. According to Pfaff, the show was modeled after balls which were common drag competitions in major U.S. cities for queer people of color throughout the 1980s-1990s.
By having this kind of event, the hosts are hoping to build a stronger sense of community within the 5C queer community, while encouraging students to have fun and express themselves.
“We thought it would be cool to have a performance that involved traditional aspects of ball culture and ballroom culture as well as just being a space for queer people and queer people of color to just be themselves and to feel they’re accepted in the community and wanted,” Pfaff said.
Endicott said he first established his drag house, The House of Ice, while he was a student at Oberlin College in response to drag becoming a more prominent part of mainstream culture. He has expanded the House since transferring to Pitzer and hopes to continue growing it.
Pfaff said this type of event is “a way to feel confident in yourself and feel confident in your ability to be [fashionable] and to feel beautiful.”
The next event will be held March 31 at Pomona College’s Doms Lounge with the theme “Gay 101.”