Friday, July 12, 2024
Highlights 2News

Drag Queens take the stage in Fort Coulonge

by GUILLAUME LAFLAMME
Fort Coulonge
Apr. 27, 2024
Drag queens brought high fashion and flair to Café Downtown in Fort Coulonge on Saturday evening, with performances including dance numbers and lip syncing to songs by popular pop artists like Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga.
The three-hour show was hosted by drag queen Maddie Longlegs along with DJ Martin Leguerrier and featured performances from Ottawa’s Miss Capital Pride winner Devona Coe, Canada’s Drag Race contestant Aimee Yoncé Shennel and rising star Bae Root.
Maddie Longlegs, known offstage as Matthew Armour, was happy to see such a positive reception from the community. “The energy’s really good,” Armour said. “I haven’t had one show in the cafe where the energy hasn’t been high.”
Armour said he has always been an entertainer, explaining that being able to go on stage and be free with people who are loving and supporting means a lot.
“It’s art,” said Armour, who lives in Gatineau but hails from Fort Coulounge. “I’m usually not like this. Outside in real life I usually have a beard and I’m very masculine. And to be able to transform myself into a performer. It’s very, very uplifting.”
Armour said the shows are meant to provide a safe and inclusive space where everyone can be themselves.
Natasha Lamadeleine, who co-owns the bar with her husband Alexandre Romain, believes the event offered a nice change of pace for the region.
“We needed something new, something diverse,” Lamadeleine said. “I think it’s perfect for people to have a safe space.”
Event attendee Annie Graveline, while not a drag performer herself, noted the importance for people to have a space in the community.
“It means that people leave their stereotypes at home and just come and encourage people to be themselves,” said Graveline. “I’m not a drag queen, but I love to dance. So these people really relate to me.”
During the show, Armour encouraged people who might be less familiar, or perhaps uncomfortable with drag performance to refrain from putting up barriers and instead maintain open dialogue.
“Talk about it. Ask all those questions and then after if you still feel indifferent about them that’s on you,” Armour said. “We all want to be loved and accepted.”

FREE ACCESS FOR EQUITY SUBSCRIBERS

This article is available free to all subscribers to The Equity. If you are a subscriber, please enter your email address and password below.

SET UP YOUR ONLINE ACCOUNT

If you are a subscriber but have not yet set up your online account, please contact Liz Draper at liz@theequity.ca to do so.

HOW TO BECOME A SUBSCRIBER

To become a subscriber to The Equity, please use our Subscribe page or contact liz@theequity.ca