Two weeks ago, we headed out to the West Coast to film and feature a new preliminary pageant for the Entertainer of the Year Pageantry System. California EOY was a resounding success and put the West Coast on the map for drag pageantry. Our cameras are now headed to the East Coast where we will be filming yet another young and up & coming preliminary pageant system.
Just like California, New York City has its own distinctive style of gay pageantry and when you think of pageant cities, NYC usually does not come to mind. Pageants, as you know it today, are “generally” not common place in New York City. That distinction belongs to the “ballroom scene” which had its roots dating back to the 1920s. Originally, the ballroom scene composed of white men who would dress up in women’s clothes to entertain middle-class and upper-class white audiences. Today’s ballroom scene has evolved and change drastically and while it does not resemble gay pageants as we know it today, it has its own place in the New York Culture.
Enter the Illusions New Jersey International Inc Pageantry System. Created in 2009 by entertainer Tyson Anyae, its goal was to provide a strong and classy outlet for the drag community, while simultaneously helping people suffering with HIV/AIDS and their caregivers. “Through this pageant,” says pageant owner Tyson Anyae, “we can uplift our community and cast away negativity & drama all while having a great time.” In its 2nd year in the NYC/NJ area, Illusions New Jersey is poised to set the tone for future pageants to come in the area.
Owner Tyson Anyae isn’t new to the arena of gay pageantry as he is a former Mr. Gay New Jersey, Mr. Essex County and Mr. Garden State. By creating the Illusions New Jersey system, he continues to give a creative outlet for all those who enjoy the world of drag. Tiffany Richards and Neo Richards (the 2009 winners of both the preliminary and national pageant contest) will be stepping down this Sunday in favor of the new king and queen who will represent NYC/NJ in the national contest.
The 2010 pageant will be hosted by a trio of talent and comedy. Princess Janae, the legendary Chevelle Brooks and SugarPie KoKo are all on tap to bring you this year’s exciting contest. Guest entertainers scheduled to perform this year include the owner of Mr. and Miss International Inc. Marlowe Rainbow, 2009 Miss International Inc. Newcomer Chi Chi Devine, legendary entertainer and former 2006 Miss New Jersey USofA Empress Vizcaya-Lord, Octavia Anyae, Nikky Sky Blake and many more. Judges this year include 2009 Mister International Inc Romance, Julie Vutton and others to be announced later. The winner of this preliminary pageant will get to compete in the national Mr. and Miss International Pageant held in Jackson, MS in June and also compete in the Mr. and Miss Gay New Jersey pageant as well.
Details you say…details. The pageant will be Sunday, January 31, 2010 at 9pm at the Ravel Hotel (808 Queens Plaza South in Long Island City). Tickets are $15 in advance which you can get by emailing email@example.com. Tickets will be $20 at the door. Need information – give the hotel a call at: 718-289-6101. Traveling by subway – Queens Borough Plaza is your closest station served by the N, W or 7 train. Traveling by car – it is a short hop (if you can call it that with New York City traffic) from Manhattan to the east.
Click Click Expose has had a fun January month of pageants with California EOY in West Hollywood, California; Miss Florida USofA & USofA Classic in Tampa, Florida and finishing up in New York. We can’t wait to meet new friends and fans in NYC and see what Illusions has to offer this year. Good luck to all the contestants and we will see everybody this Sunday.