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Performers light up the stage at Windy City Trans Visibility Pageant
by Vern Hester
2024-04-01

This article shared 13418 times since Mon Apr 1, 2024
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Life is Work presented its 3rd Annual Windy City Trans Visibility Pageant on March 30, with a star-studded epic extravaganza featuring 11 contestants performing alongside personalities from RuPaul's Drag Race.

The event, which was held at the Kehrein Center for the Arts, 5628 W. Washington Blvd., also saw entertainers Sherri Payne and Mimi Marks receive awards for their devotion to the community.

The packed and rowdy show also featured a cash bar and a raffle. Contestants in the pageant competed in three categories—presentation, gowns-formal wear, and talent—for a prize of $4,000 and the crown. Dymond V. Cassadine Carrington was crowned the winner at the end of the evening.

Despite the stellar lineup (which included performances by contestants Silky Ganache and Trinity K. Bonet from RuPaul's Drag Race), the show was fraught with some tech issues which popped up throughout the evening. The sound system frequently went out during performances—but that issue fueled one of the night's biggest triumphs. The sound cut out a third of the way through contestant Honey B. Iman Kreshe's high- energy scat performance, but that didn't stop her as she went on scatting for a good two minutes. The audience rewarded her with a standing ovation.

In receiving her Community Icon Award, performer Sherrie Payne paid tribute to her brother, Donald Henderson, who at a young age steered her to the world of entertainment. Activist, author, and Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Commissioner Precious Brady-Davis spontaneously jumped onstage and said to Payne, "As a young trans person, I stood on your shoulders. ... Without Sherri Payne there would be no Precious Brady-Davis."

Emcees Ms. Ruff n Stuff and Terry D'Mor started the evening in high fashion while hurling humorous barbs at one another. With a night full of strikingly talented entertainers (including Lila Star, Chablis Onassis, Mama Bare, Pheonix Black O'Hara, Sy'ria Synclaire, Sakura Lauren, and India Sherry) no one could find fault with what ultimately turned out to be an overwhelming evening.

The Day of Trans Visibility began fifteen years ago as a response to the Trans Day of Remembrance which takes place in November. While that day acknowledges and pays tribute to trans people who are lost to violence, the Day of Visibility instead honors and highlights trans people living and thriving every March 31.

Life is Work is a service organization serving the trans community in the Chicago area. According to the organization's website, "Life is Work has a mission to support and uplift trans people of color through direct services, activism, and advocacy. To accomplish this mission. Life is Work provides case management guided programs assisting with healthcare, employment, and legal referrals."

To donate or for more information go to lifeiswork.org .


This article shared 13418 times since Mon Apr 1, 2024
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