Sometimes a person can go most of their lives feeling like something is missing. There is this feeling inside to make a change. A calling, if you will. Through circumstances of life, that calling can present itself at the most unexpected times. One such story that we have recently been told is from a customer all the way in Alaska, who after many years had the chance to answer that calling that was always inside. Now that she has embraced her newfound lifestyle, all her dreams are coming true. Let’s meet Monique.
I am Monique – A Drag Queens Story
“Hi, my name is Steven, I am 56 years old and live in Homer, Alaska. I was a born and raised pig farmer and logger in Whitefish, Montana. I spent most of my free time camping, hunting and fishing. Basically, anything outdoors. I enjoyed being an athlete in high school. I excelled in track, football, baseball and skiing, things I still enjoy today. However, I daydreamed much of the time about being a dancer and being onstage.
Academically, my father always said I would be a good mechanic, so this is the direction I headed. I was an Army soldier and a diesel mechanic for 4 years. After being honorably discharged, I attended 2 years of automotive Vo-Tech in Helena, Montana. As things happen in life, I attended a Telephone / Network school and have spent the last 28 years working in the field of telecommunications / networks.
I got married and raised two wonderful sons. They are both in the United States Navy, now raising families of their own. The boys’ mom and I are very pleased with our children’s lives and the achievements they have made.
As I grew older I still felt something was missing; and at the age of 48 I attended my first ballet class at the Harbor School of Music in Homer, Alaska. I was instantly hooked. I attended ballet and modern dance classes for 2 years and fell even more in love with dance. After all these years, I still had the same dream. To dance onstage at least one time in my life.
Seven years later, I have accomplished that dream and so much more. I have learned how to choreograph dances for the big stage and have performed five altogether. I have also danced in the local Nutcracker 3 times. I love being on the stage, as it makes me feel so free in life.
I remember dreaming of being a dancer on those long hot summer days growing up on the farm, but I never saw what was coming next. The day I became Monique. My beautiful character Monique.
Monique is my Drag Queen name and she has become a big part of my life. This all started by telling a friend I would love to see a lady dance to Amy Winehouse’s “Hey Little Rich Girl”. My friend said you should try dancing in drag, you have great legs. I remember my first trip to the thrift store to figure out if I could wear heels and if so what size; I was amazed at the female attention and help I received. They were very intrigued and I was very excited.
I must say, my 18 months of dancing as Monique has been the most educational, emotional and stimulating thing I have ever done. There are so many things I love about being a Drag Queen. For starters, the education. The understanding about physically being a lady is not an easy task. I have spent many hours reading and watching ladies, learning female mannerisms, styles of shoes, dresses, hats, makeup and the list goes on and on. So does the fun. There is also a very emotional side to all of this. This passion of dance is driving Monique to be a beautiful performer and helping me face the fears that I had hidden inside, and all the love is coming out. It is so stimulating. At the end of the performance, thanking all the guests, “my beautiful audience” receiving hugs, taking pictures and laughing until our bellies hurt. It’s good for the soul. I have made so many new friends and have had such great support from friends that see me being happy and enjoying the life of being a performing drag queen.
Now for the fun part. Living in Homer, Alaska has given me some great opportunities to perform and be onstage. I perform at a small bar called “Alice’s Champagne Palace’, on a 12′ x 4′ dance floor that I made so I can dance in heels. The show is every first Wednesday of the month. Everybody receives 5 minutes, and there are about 10 to 12 acts of reading, circus, music, song and dance. My first drag queen dance was in this bar.
I have also had the pleasure of working with the local Burlesque dance troupe “Tails & Tassels”, and their ring leader Bobbye Pin-Up. This young lady and I have danced in all the above-mentioned Nutcrackers as well as big stage shows together. Bobbye has welcomed Monique into her Burlesque show with open arms. All the awesome gentleman and ladies in this dance troupe are amazing in so many ways; the type of people you just always like to have a beer with. Burlesque has been such amazing experience and so much more!
Steven K. / AKA Monique