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Performing Arts

Luck be a lady

Aspiring divas from across the state descend on OKC to compete for the crown.

Lance Evans April 18th, 2012

Miss Gay Oklahoma USofA Newcomer
10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 10:30 p.m. Friday
2117 N.W. 39th

Ready, set, drag!

The Queens of the Night break out their ball gowns, dance moves and nicely manicured claws as they prepare to lip-sync for their lives at this year’s Miss Gay Oklahoma USofA Newcomer. The pageant promises a night full of entertainment and fierce competition.

“They’re looking for guys that look more like women,” said pageant promoter Jack Calcote.

Calcote said that people of any sexual orientation can expect to have a great time at the pageant.

“[The audience will] be able to see more illusions [and] won’t be able to tell if some [of] these contestants are male.”

Beyoncé proclaimed it last year and everyone is finally starting to notice: Girls clearly run the world. The emergence of RuPaul’s Drag Race, The A-List and other gay-oriented television programming has helped put various facets of the gay lifestyle front-and-center on the small screen.

“People are starting to look at it completely differently,” said Calcote.

Ataia O’Hara, the Tulsa’s Newcomer title winner, said she also believes that the world is finally getting a better understanding of the drag scene.

“I differ because it’s more of an upbringing [coupled with] a passion. You can definitely tell who is here to [really] do it,” she said.

While most contestants may be spending every second leading up to the pageant preparing for the big night, O’Hara is confident that her natural ability and stage presence will give her an edge.

“I’m not doing that much [preparation] because the city title pretty much prepared me for what I need to do and what I need to know for state,” she said. “I do what I want because drag is an expression.”

O’Hara said that contestants can expect to see one clear thing from her performance: a woman.

“I go for an exaggerated real woman — as real as possible.”

Miss Gay USofA Newcomer is simply Miss America with a lot more attitude.

“It’s a little more laid-back. You have to do gown, talent and an interview,” said Calcote. “That’s what the newcomer system is — to make them better divas.”

Calcote said that there are a number of contestants whom he can see walk away with the crown, but refused to speculate which diva will reign supreme.

“Get ready to be shocked,” he said.

“You’ll have a good time and you’ll be impressed.”

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