• queerport

Who Will Win Central Station's Talent Night?

Updated: Dec 7, 2019

Update 12.7.19: The story previously said the winner would perform at Central Station on Saturday, Dec. 7. The winner will now perform at a later date to be announced.


"It takes a lot of money to look this cheap, darling."


For three months, patrons and supporters have gathered the last Friday of each month for Central Station's Talent Night. Nearly a dozen performers vied for the chance to hit the main stage during a coveted Saturday night (Dec. 14). Hosted by Central's own Violet Ray and Mya Andrews, this all culminates with the final showdown on Friday, Nov. 29. We are excited to introduce to you to the four fabulous beauties performing:


Faye Hexx

Name: Tyler Cameryn

Age: 24


Faye Hexx is a drag queen based on both real people and not, such as Faye Dunaway in Mommy Dearest. It also references the Faye or as most people know them, fairies. Hexx is a play on the Hex Girls from Scooby-Doo and an old German word for witch. Faye loves walking barefoot through moonlit forests, sacrificing fascists with her coven, and eating more cookies than her human form (or corset) can handle.


How did you get into drag and performing?

I got bitten by the drag bug when I was around 13-14 and saw Nina Flowers walking down the runway on the first episode (of RuPaul's Drag Race). She was everything I couldn’t be at that age, and everything I hoped I would be: strong, glamorous, and punk as all hell. After that, I fell headfirst into makeup and fashion. In college, I performed in drag three times at RHAPaul's Drag Race. I worked with Central Station's own Ladi PhatKat for two of the shows, and Zavion Davenport (Chi Chi Devayne) spoke at the last one! This only further fired up my passion for drag and performing.



What are some of your biggest influences?

Fashion designers such as: Gareth Pugh, Alexander McQueen, and Dior, Renaissance paintings of Saints and Angels, Florence Welch, Horror movies, any femme rockstar from the '80s, Playboy models and high fashion models from the '80s-'90s, Tim Burton films, and fantasy video games (who doesn’t love a badass babe in a thong with a huge battle axe?).


What advice would you give your teenage self?

The biggest obstacle in your path right now, and probably for a while, will be your own expectations of yourself and others. No one, not even you, is perfect. So stop trying to be! You are more special, creative, thoughtful, and talented than you can conceive right now. Trust your own instincts and follow them.


If you are crowned the winner, what will it mean for you?

If I were crowned the winner it would mean the summation and completion of a dream I have had for over a decade. I have applied every ounce of creativity to growing and refining my drag as quickly and staying true to myself as much as possible. I love drag, as much as I am physically capable of, and it brings me so much joy. All I want to do is share that joy with other people.


You can follow Faye Hexx on Instagram @fayehexx.


Mirage

Name: Jacob Corder

Age: 22


Mirage is inspired by the vintage beauties of the 1950s and 1980s. Mirage is a blend of old school meets new school. If you come to one of her shows, there’s almost always a throwback; there’s usually something fresh and a little more obscure, too. She’s versatile like that. Mirage’s worst fear is just being a Top 40 queen.


How did you get into drag and performing?

Mirage has always been trying to manifest herself through my exploration of androgyny and femininity, but she really was born in 2018. That’s when I really started going out in full drag. My first performance was at The Korner Lounge for a solo drag bingo I hosted around this time last year. After about an 8-month long hiatus, I was asked to perform at Central Station for a benefit event, Rainbow of Hope. That really sparked my fire for performing. After that, I performed at the first Queerport event and then started to get booked at The Korner Lounge regularly. We now have our own regular show there that I co-host along with Vanity. I’ve even had the privilege to walk in a couple of fashion shows! How many young queens can say they’ve done that at the very start of their career? I originally thought I might come up as a social media queen, posting looks. However, thanks to great opportunities, I’m the proud, professional working bar queen I wanted to be.


Who are your biggest influences? My biggest drag inspiration for fashion is Joan Collins’ character, Alexis from the ‘80s soap opera, Dynasty. She was always wearing perfectly coiffed hair, red lips, and a power suit or glamorous evening gown. The women of the 1980s inspire a lot of my drag. I am also inspired by the aesthetic of various music artists like Cher, Lady Gaga, and especially my ultimate idol, Stevie Nicks.



What advice would you give your teenage self?

I would tell myself that my time in high school is temporary. To not get so stuck on how bad the present might be, and to focus on the future. You will become confident and everything you’ve been shamed for your entire life will one day be validated and celebrated. Don’t be afraid to be flamboyant. That is who you are. It is okay to be feminine because the strong women in your life who raised you are why you are that way. There is nothing to be ashamed of in your sexuality or gender identity/expression.


If you are crowned the winner, what will it mean for you?

Being crowned the winner for Central Station’s Talent Night would mean everything for me. It will be an opportunity to share my art and passion with its biggest audience yet. I mean it’s Central’s Saturday night show! You can’t get bigger than that here in Shreveport. It would also mean proving myself to the queens of Central Station. My first drag show was seeing a few of them perform at a brunch show before I was even 21. I went up afterward and introduced myself and showed them photos of me in makeup and an unsettled wig, wrapped in a coat in my bedroom. I was still finding my way with makeup and my aesthetic. Hell, I still am, and I’ll always be constantly learning and evolving. I would love to show them how far I’ve come from that little queen running around the club in baby drag, trying her best; and that I am a damn good queen, despite only having performed for a year. I know my worth, and I’m here to show Shreveport, and one day, the world.


You can follow Mirage on Instagram @miragethequeen.


Lemon Pop

Name:  Shadi Darziedan Age:  27 Lemon Pop is the resident oddball of Shreveport’s drag scene. She likes sweets, art, segues, and breaking from convention. Give Lemon a microphone at your own risk, because when she has it, she won’t give it back until she’s said every last thing that has occurred to her at that moment. She can keep a crowd engaged and always leaves them with a new perspective in mind. She may be tart at first, but she’ll leave you craving something only she can provide: a feel-good moment.

How did you get into drag and performing? Most of my experience with entertaining crowds of people come from when I was an instructor at the local sip-and-paint studio. I taught classes on how to paint works of art in a way that was approachable and fun for any audience. Also, being friends with lots of young artists from the Highland area really pushed me to figure myself out as an artist. I really enjoyed illustration and portraiture, so with some inspiration from my makeup-proficient pals, I started experimenting with cosmetics on myself. My first few runs of drag involved me working with June Cleavage on the set of local short film Gloria as a drag queen extra, as well as a little modeling gig for a goth queen shoot for Vessel Vintage. I started hosting bingo nights in drag at the Korner Lounge last year, and it was so much fun! Since then I have performed at Central, Queerport, and the Port Grill. It’s been a riot. Who are your biggest influences? A lot of my personal inspiration comes from animation and graphic novels, as that’s where I was inspired for my illustrative work. Seeing characters with bold shapes and color stories impressed upon me how much aesthetic can advance and enhance any aspect of your own character or personality. A lot of works with a heavy focus on unique aesthetic and character design informed my visuals: Asterio Polyp, Kill La Kill, Gigantic (a video game), Steven Universe, the list goes on. 


What advice would you give your teenage self?  Let people know when to take you seriously so they can know the value you bring to the table. If you are crowned the winner, what will it mean for you? For a long time, I did not feel comfy hanging out in the local gay bars because I felt no one knew what to do with me. At the same time, I am the only out gay Palestinian Muslim-ish person in the SBC that I know of, and I was closeted for such a long time that I didn’t always trust people would get me or my perspective of being brought up in a way that kept me sheltered from typical American experiences. To have my perspective as an artist, as a performer, and as a Palestinian gay in Shreveport validated in this way would mean that I can find success for myself while carving my own path and committing to my voice, and it will prove that there is room to explore outside of what we see from Shreveport today.


You can follow Lemon Pop on Instagram @lemondrag or on Facebook.

Duck

Name: Jayln’ Hampton

Age: 22


Duck is, as she puts it, unconventional and oddly beautiful. She may not be the best at dancing, but she loves to throw down. She’s a pop princess.


How did you get into drag and performing?

I have no background in performing and I had only played in makeup a little, but my drag mother, Vanity, is the one who gave me the push I needed to start. By day I work as an ER nurse and I feel like that gives me the voice and nerve I need sometimes.


Who are your biggest influences?

Rihanna, for sure. Along with Lady Gaga, FKA Twigs, Naomi Smalls, Valentina, and of course, Beyoncé.


What advice would you give your teenage self?

Dive headfirst. Don’t lose yourself and don’t procrastinate so much!


If you are crowned the winner, what will it mean for you?

It’d be a shock. Being so new, I’d be in disbelief. I probably wouldn’t be able to contain the joy. I’d feel validated and it would give me a great push to keep the momentum going.



You can follow Duck on Instagram @duckie.duck.


IF YOU GO

What: Talent Night

When: 10 pm Friday, Nov. 29. Central Station, 1025 Marshall St. in Shreveport

Admission: Free, 21+

Info: facebook.com/centralstationshreveport


Derick Jones is based in Shreveport, Louisiana and is one of the co-creators of Queerport. They are a journalist, business owner, and event planner. Maybe a little videography, too. Cover photo by Laura Hood Photography.


0 views

© QUEERPORT 2020