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|Pride: Starlight Cabaret ends Pride on glamorous note|
|by Jim Farmer|
|October 11, 2012 11:11|
The Starlight Cabaret ends Pride weekend on a particularly high note, closing out the Coca-Cola stage at 7 p.m. Sunday evening. For many, it is one of the highlights of the entire weekend of activities, as Atlanta’s drag queens and kings bring out their best performances for their largest audience of the year.
Tony Kearney, who handles programming for the Atlanta Pride Committee, has been involved in putting the cabaret together for the last five years. It’s the largest celebration of its kind in the Southeast and retains much of the day’s crowd.
“It’s amazing to see how many people are still in the park after Pride,” Kearney said. “Last year there were around 5,000 people enjoying the show.”
And because it’s free, anyone can watch, even those who might not be able to otherwise.
“We see people of all ages and races at the event,” he said. “Kids under 21 who might not be able to get into the bars are able to come out and enjoy all the acts.”
“We highlight some of the best drag around,” Kearney said. “It’s fitting that we end with this every year. Looking back at history, drag queens were responsible for helping to start Pride. Why not have it as the final act: where would we be without the drag queens?”
This year’s cabaret features the Rush Cast, the Armorettes, the Divas of LeBuzz, Burkhart’s Cast, Athens Showgirl Cabaret and various drag kings.
Individual performers are Mariah Paris Balenciaga, Sassy, Summer Knight, Nichelle Paris, Violet, Mya Monroe, Savannah Leigh, Mary Edith Pitts, Shawna Brooks, Charlie Brown, Lateasha Shuntel, Shabazz, Wild Cherry Sucret and Lena Lust.
The evening’s special guest star will be “Vampire Diaries” actress and singer Kat Graham, who will be doing something not always associated with the cabaret — actually singing. Graham also performs on Saturday at 2 p.m.
Top photo: Dozens of Atlanta’s drag queens and kings bring camp humor, glam style and even activism to the Starlight Cabaret stage for one of Pride’s favorite events. (Photo by Laura Douglas-Brown)
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