story by Diane Thornton | photo by Kevin Reed Photography
(pictured above: one of the production numbers from the 2016 show)
It truly doesn’t matter whether you remember the flared pantsuits, hot pants and gold-lamé disco jumpsuit era. You and everyone else will love seeing Allysun Wunderland, Camille Collins and Gina Lola Jupiter along with other drag queen legends (in their own disco minds) work their magic in this year’s Friends of George’s “The Dragnificent ‘70s.” Shows will be April 5, 6, 12, and 13 at Evergreen Theatre.
Back in the ‘70s, drag queens actually had to sing and nobody had anything more than a boombox to accompany them. It’s anyone’s guess what the cast will come up with, but you can trust this crazy drag family to bring the swinging 1970s back from the dead with this Friends of George’s (FOG) annual variety show.
“Deciding on a ‘70s theme took no time,” said Allysun Wunderland, president of Friends of George’s LGBT+ Theatre for a Cause, “but focusing that shiny disco ball into a coherent variety show is hard work that takes a non-stop group effort. Just attend a production meeting and you will marvel that they accomplish anything. Ideas explode like a sweaty drag queen just released from a corset. And bringing this bevy of vibrant personalities to the stage is no easy feat either, especially when the personalities are #dragqueenswith opinions.
This creative chaos is alternately hilarious and heart-stopping. The skits are all over the board, but someone ultimately sorts out the manageable concepts… then the chaos starts all over again. They have yet to have a complete cast/crew run- through start-to-finish prior to dress rehearsal, and costumes are known to “evolve” as this show goes on. It is a running joke, albeit not a terribly funny one when you’re living it, but the unpredictability is always a winner with the audience. Turns out all these personalities create even more reasons to go see the show more than once; it’s a different show every night.