Legends VI: A Musical Celebration of Cherry Grove’s Homecoming Queens: Hullabaloo: A ’60s Musical Flashback
Photos by Ray Bagnuolo
Of all the ambitious genres
produced by the Arts Project, what the Grove does best, and is internationally
for is its spectacular array of Drag Queens…and for those like myself,
hungering for a last glimpse of them all, Matt Baney’s Labor Day send off
certainly satiated my hunger.
And what better frame than the
60’s with its big hair and psychedelic costumes!
And so well suited to the
“mature” audience a we were on a nostalgic ride, not only to the music but
also, as a clever addition, the commercials, to which many in the crowed sang
Acting as emcee a unique stage
appearance in a jump down from the booth and onto the boards, script in hand,
was Matt Baney, the show’s creator, director, set designer and technical
directi9or behind the spotlights
The show opened with
a parade of Queens
Queens on the runway
included (in chronological order):
1990 Philomena, 2000 Good/Angela Mercy, 2001 China, 2002 Ariel Sinclair, 2004 Donna
Piranha, 2005 Ivanna Cocktail, 2006 Coco Love, 2007 Lola, 2008 Margo, 2009
Urban Sprawl, 2010 Beach DeBree, 2011 YaNeeda Dunes, 2014 Whore D’Oeuvre, and
2015 Demi-Tasse – all looking marvelously glam and chic, augmented by Grove
celebs Bella, Susan and Ruth Freedner, Paulette Manos, Sue Panzer, Angela
Smith, Jennie Mandelino, Diana DiPrima, Edie Ringel.
Drawing in the
60’s songbook were famous renditions of:
“Heat Wave,”, “It’s in His Kiss”, “Dancing in the Streets,”
“My Boyfriend’s Back,” “My Guy,” “Shout,” and “I Only Wanna Be with You,”
culminating in the familiar “Downtown,” with audience participation who
also sang along with the commercials for Alka Seltzer jingle, Crackerjacks ,
Doublemint Gum and a special reference to Which Twin Has The Tony?.
Bianchi plays her own composition
Bella in Wait Mr. Postman anxious
…and gets a picture of Panzi!
Angela Merci does the to9ngue
twisting, lip synching Name Game
Donna as the White Rabbit and the
Uses a little substance to
improve the mood
Panzi as Dominique, the singing
nun with the twins as back up – the funniest moment in the show
CoCo Love spills the dirt in
Harper Valley PTA
Doublemint gum doubles your
pleasure! The Twins
Matt leads into the hippie Make
Your Own Music
Ari8el – These Boots Were Made
NO Triplets like These!!! In He’s So Fine (apologies to Bandwagon)
Whore D’Oeuvre used “Stand by Your Man” to torture victims from the audience
Panzi – Janis Joplin actually
gave you a piece of her heart (ugh)!
Margo the ultimate hippie (not
with that hair) in Aquarius
Philomena in Where the Boys Are
shows how accommodating she can be
Demi spectacular in Goldfinger
was “Dancing in the Streets” led into a parade if the Biggest Hair for the
Gorgeous and ingenious spotlight
on the Wigs to “Hair”.
CGCAI Board of Directors
Matt closed the show remarking
that this is the last time the Grove will see the theater (the oldest
continuously operating LGBT Theater in the country and a landmark) as it is; it
will be renovated for next summer.
Marked as Legends VI, will VII be in the future?