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Arts & Entertainment

“Drag” Yourself to This Ball

Dance all night at Spectrum’s annual event

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Boys, bust out your stilettos. Girls, practice that half-Windsor knot. It’s time for a BU tradition: Spectrum’s annual drag ball.

Tonight, join the GLBTQA community in a night of music and dancing at the Monster Drag Ball: Show Us Your Teeth, a vampire-themed drag ball hosted by Spectrum, Boston University’s gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and allied cultural organization, at 10 p.m. in the George Sherman Union Metcalf Ballroom.

Marc My Jacobs, the drag persona of James Fluhr (CFA’11), emcees the ball, which takes its name from the Lady Gaga song “Show Me Your Teeth” and her Monster Ball tour. The event includes an amateur drag contest, with prizes being awarded to the winner. Attendees sporting the best Lady Gaga and vampire costumes will also receive special prizes.

Spectrum’s Drag Ball began in 2007, says Spectrum copresident Justin Touchette (COM’11), in response to the limited gay-friendly entertainment options available to BU students. “It really is a place for people to go and feel comfortable,” he says.

All are invited to tonight’s event, Touchette says, regardless of whether they’re in drag attire. “For one night there is an event where you can go and not worry about being judged. Everyone is welcome at the drag ball.”

In addition to the drag and costume contests, other highlights include performances by Boston-based drag queen JuJuBee, best known for her stint on season two of RuPaul’s Drag Race on Logo TV, and Fusion, BU’s hip-hop dance troupe.

In between dances, take a break and stop by the Dance Marathon table. Now in its ninth year, Dance Marathon is BU’s largest annual fundraiser. Proceeds from the 18-hour nonstop dance party, to be held April 2 and 3, 2011, go to the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and One Heartland, a nonprofit organization that provides free camp programs for children whose lives are impacted by HIV/AIDS.

“Since its discovery, HIV/AIDS has had a huge impact on the GLBTQA culture and community,” says Spectrum outreach coordinator Ksenia Lanin (CAS’11), “and we want to pay tribute to that by encouraging our members and our community to participate in the fundraiser held by Dance Marathon.”

Representatives from MassEquality, a Boston-based organization that works to protect, promote, and defend marriage equality and to advance GLBTQA rights, will also be at tonight’s Drag Ball. They will hand out postcards students can send to Massachusetts state representatives urging them to support the Transgender Civil Rights Bill, which would make it illegal to discriminate on the basis of gender identity or expression.

“Drag Ball is a celebration of BU’s open and affirming community,” says Lanin, “and we want every student who helps us in creating this community to celebrate it with us.”

The Monster Drag Ball: Show Us Your Teeth happens tonight, Friday, October 15, at the George Sherman Union Metcalf Ballroom, 775 Commonwealth Ave., from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Admission is $5 with a valid college ID. The event is open to all college students.

Brendan Gauthier can be reached at btgauth@bu.edu.

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