Drag Queens on Ice: An Eleganza Extravaganza

993502_609389212472083_694212643_nBy Mocha Fapalatte a.k.a. Derick Macabenta

January 2014 is already speeding by, with surges of New Years resolvers hitting the gym and reflecting on how their 2013 was spent. And how could we possibly reflect on the year in the Bay Area without shining some light on an only-in-San-Francisco holiday season must see? On Thursday, December 12 at the Safeway Holiday Ice Rink in Union Square presented by Alaska Airlines, the night was taken over by the most glamorous gathering of glamazons the City has to offer.

The event was presented by Visit Mendocino County, a non-profit organization designed to draw tourism into the community, who also hosted a special photo booth with Sister Roma of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, the “most photographed nun in the world.” All donations from the photo booth will be matched by Visit Mendocino County to benefit the partner charities of the Order of Perpetual Indulgence.  When asked how she felt being a part of the event, Sister Roma replied, “It’s beautiful. It’s amazing. It’s such a unique San Francisco experience. Everyone is in such a good mood. People love to see the drag queens and the costumes. It’s just beautiful; it’s Christmas.”  The Sisters’ next big event in San Francisco will be coming up this Easter in Dolores Park; their annual Hunky Jesus contest, their anniversary, is one of the Sisters’ largest events in the City.

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Not long after getting to check out the exclusive VIP section, which boasted a great view of the ice rink as well as pastries and hot cocoa, did the queens take to the ice. Special holiday themed performances were prepared by Bay Area drag queens and professional ice skaters, in their most gay apparel of course. Mistress of ceremonies, star of the Starlight Room’s Drag Brunch, Donna Sachet acted as the “drag queen OFF the ice, but ON the microphone,” introducing each of the queens as she entered the rink to perform, all the while throwing just a tiny bit of shade at the girls during their routines. The performances ranged from the more traditional glamour girl lip-synching of Mahlae Balenciaga, to the comedy queen styles of Mutha Chuka, to the ice princess figure skating of Kim ChiChi, and everything in between with performances also by Holotta Tymes, Nellie, and Ana Conda.

Mocha Fapalatte

While all of the queens slayed the ice within their own style of drag, one diva in particular stood out with her performance. Kim ChiChi took some time to talk after the performances about her performance style and what it took to prepare a drag performance on ice. “It’s a lot different on ice. With figure skating you have to cover a lot more ground. And the blade work with figure skating doesn’t quite match up with some of the dance moves. A lot of the times I have to make adjustments. One of the hardest styles to translate on ice is hip-hop or street jazz type moves. But my thing is trying to figure out how I can offer something different on skates so it’s a hybrid of both worlds.” It wasn’t until later that she revealed she is actually a competitive figure skater out of drag, under the name Ian Catindig, and is preparing for a competition in February and the upcoming Gay Games in August. For more of Ian’s performances, his YouTube channel is youtube.com/dumdeedumlalala.

With the New Year already in full swing it’s time to say out with the old and in with the Glam. Drag Queens on Ice may be over, but there’s no reason not to take a page from their books. This year throw own a couple extra sequins and bust out the fake lashes and indulge a little more than you would. And as one drag superstar always says, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the Hell are you gonna love somebody else? Can I get an Amen?”

The Union Square Ice Rink is open from 10am-11:30pm every day through Monday January 20th. For more infomation visit http://unionsquareicerink.com/