Asia T. O’Hara of Dallas has been crowned Miss Gay America 2016. The pageant was held this past weekend, Oct. 7-11, at the Holiday Inn Memphis Airport Hotel in Memphis, Tenn.
A lifelong Dallas resident, O’Hara was also Miss Gay USofA 2007 and All-American Goddess 2012. This was her first time to compete in the Miss Gay America Pageant, and she is only the second first-time contestant to walk away with the title.
Asia T. O’Hara is on the cast of The Rose Room in S4 in Dallas, and when she isn’t performing, she operates her own business, Antwan Lee Designs, which designs and creates costumes for high school dance and drill teams and for other drag performers.
Del Shores aways remembers his texas roots — it’s why he’s forever coming back to Dallas with his one-man comedy shows. His newest one will launch here (at the Rose Room, natch) on April 17. Called Del Shores: SINgularly Sordid, in it he discusses life post divorce at getting back into date scene in the age of Tinder, Grindr and Scruff, as well as letters from haters and dishy Hollywood stories.
And it won’t be his only trip here. He’ll begin filming A Very Sordid Wedding as soon as he can, which will be shot in and around Dallas and prominently feature the Rose Room.
Tickets to SINgularly Sordid are available here ($10 standing room, $20 seated, $30 VIP).
On Feb. 13, the latest in the Uptown Players-Jamie Morris team-ups of movie/TV spoofs (in drag!) will open for a month-long run at the Rose Room, and the cast alone shows it promises to be a doozy. Gilligan’s Fire Island puts the screw and passengers of the S.S. Minnow on the New York spit of land known for its gay guesthouses and cruise-y beaches. I’ll have an interview with Morris on Friday, but until then, check out this teaser for Gilligan’s Fire Island … and you’ll never year the term “little buddy” the same way again.
Loni wowed the audience and the judges in her three appearances — two solos, finishing up with a powerful version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” and in a duet with fellow finalist Lauren Shafer on Adele’s “Someone Like You” — to take the 11th annual title. In fact, Loni was so good, she and Lauren jointly won the “best duet” award, voted on by the audience, meaning she took home $3,850 — not bad for one evening’s work!
First runner up was Alvaro Ramalho, followed by Vanessa Guzman, Carlos Saenz and Steve Patterson. Congrats, Loni and all the contestants on a great show. And look for Loni, Alvaro and Vanessa in the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade and festival next month.
You can see a slide show of the event by clicking here.
On Saturday, The Summer Party, a 12-year-old pool bash at a private home in East Dallas, raised money for ASD, and included a fashion show by Skivvies, as well as a sarong contest for the gathered guests. Later that evening, The Red Party, a fundraising group benefiting Legacy, staged a poolside fashion show of its own at the ilume, with vodka by Hudson Ferus, snacks and margaritas from Mi Cocina and swimwear by Aussie Bum, ES Collection, Marek+Richard and others. Then on Sunday evening, the Rose Room gave over to the Miss LifeWalk contest, a fundraiser for AIDS Arms. Thousands of dollars were raised … and a lot of eyes popped.
Heidi Liqueur, left, and Siena Silver, Brianna Michelle and Rosio Bencos.
… Heidi Liqueur!
Last night in the Rose Room, the LifeWalk Green Team contestant faced off against three other awesome drag divas to take the crown at the 11th annual fundraiser preliminary for October’s walk, which benefits AIDS Arms. Heidi’s dazzling beaded gown, in the same red-and-white colors as her Chick-Fil-A dress (which she performed to the “Hold On” parody “Chow Down”) while serving chicken tenders to the audience, won over the judges (and I was one of them!) in a satisfying finale. But all four entrant were insanely talented and impressive, from Siena Silver’s rainbow-accented dress following a champagne accented evening-wear gown, to Rosio Bencos’ back-up dancers and elaborate costume, to Brianna Michelle’s pink-and-emerald palette.
The winner being cheered
Heidi won individual awards for Spirit of Miss LifeWalk and for evening wear and talent in addition to the overall prize, while Siena took Miss Congeniality and Brianna won Miss Moneybags for raising the most for AIDS Arms — $7,400! In total, the event took in a staggering $21,628 — $4,000 more than last year.
The show was a hoot, with primary host Heather Thomas bullying the crowd into donating more and more money, and five former Miss LifeWalk winners performing, with all money going to the charity. Victoria Weston wowed the audience with two live performances. Outgoing Miss LifeWalk Vida Chardonnay did a tribute to Elaine Stritch that stunned everyone. View pictures in our full slideshow here.
LifeWalk takes place Oct. 5, and it’s never too late to volunteer or participate.
Joel Ferrell, who will be directing the Dallas Theater Center’s upcoming production of The Rocky Horror Show, needs your help.
Part of Ferrell’s concept for the show calls for “living set decorations” — gender-benders, elaborately tattooed and/or surprisingly pierced men and women, or those with special skills (think circus sideshows: sword swallowers, snake charmers and the like) to add atmosphere to the show. You don’t need to know how to sing, dance or act — just be fun to look at. (And, FYI, there’s no remuneration involved, it’s just for your own pleasure.)
To track down those who’ll fit, the DTC is hosting an open casting call at the Rose Room on Saturday, July 26. There are 50 audition slots open, which you can apply for my email to Laura.Colleluori@DallasTheaterCenter.org. Just send her your name, age, phone number and brief description of your talent. Auditions will start at 3:30 p.m. The production of Rocky runs Sept. 11–Oct. 19, and those selected will be expected to appear at about half of the performances.
OK, we’ll admit to a little self-interest here: The Elizabeth Trail’rs, Dallas Voice’s LifeWalk team, is the charitable raffle sponsor at Gaybingo this weekend. That means while you help Resource Center Dallas — and enjoy yourself with a fabulous series of games — you can also help out our team. We’ve even made it really easy for you: This poster tells you everything you need to know (it’s Saturday, starting at 5 p.m., at the Rose Room) and even includes a QR code for easy scanning.
C’mon! You know you wanna win some faboo swag! Give a guy some love…