All Hail the Kings
New Mexico Drag Kings perform to benefit Colorado shooting victims’ families
While drag queens have certainly enjoyed a more ubiquitous presence within the broader cultural milieu, drag kings have seemingly struggled to gain a similar foothold. Of course, kings are nothing new, with many performers reaching decades’ worth of experience, and it’s not entirely clear what’s so confusing about the concept—perhaps something about how there haven’t really been television shows, of which to speak, like RuPaul’s Drag Race. Whatever the reason, many just don’t know about ‘em as well as they could, but a cadre of local and touring kings are poised to change that perception when they take center stage at an event in Santa Fe this week.
“One of our big missions is trying to establish our name in the community,” says drag king and organizer Rusty Nutz, who, along with numerous others, hosts this Saturday’s Viva Las Vegas! performance at the Jean Cocteau Cinema. “I think even RuPaul is going to have their first drag king on the show soon, which is huge—we’ve been fighting for a long time to be seen.”
Nutz is a native New Mexican who came up performing in troupes in Washington, DC, and elsewhere, and he describes the drag king craft as an “umbrella that is not rigidly defined.” His character, for example, is very dapper, while others might be silly, sexy, charming and so on. He’s also stacked the upcoming lineup with a veritable cornucopia of drag talent, from award-winning king Rocco Steele and current Miss Gay Pride Youth, Rainbownita, to Nutz’s drag brother Magic Nutz, burgeoning local performer Adam Bomb and many others. And though the performance was originally slated to benefit Santa Fe’s Human Rights Alliance, which puts on the annual Pride celebrations in town among other things, the recent shooting at Colorado Springs LGBTQ bar, Club Q, changed those plans last-minute. Henceforth, all proceeds raised during Viva Las Vegas! will go to the Colorado Healing Fund to benefit the families of the victims.
“We figured let’s do something for our neighbors, in Colorado” Nutz tells SFR. “People are even donating the tips they’ll make at the show.”
That doesn’t mean the event need be somber, however, and Nutz says he’s looking forward to showing folks what he and his fellow performers can do.
“It’s sexy, it’s glam, there are a lot of props,” he explains. “It could be politically-fueled, too. Some of the performers are very passionate about what’s happening right now. Really, it’s kind of all over the place.” (Alex De Vore)
New Mexico Drag Kings Present: Viva Las Vegas!: 9 pm Saturday, Nov. 26. $20-$50. Jean Cocteau Cinema, 418 Montezuma Ave., (505) 466-5528
Shred the Gnar 2: Electric Boogaloo
If’n you hadn’t heard about local fine-art-meets-skate-culture brand Kamagraph, it’s time to get onboard. In a nutshell, the company from local arts consultant Bobby Beals taps artists to create unique skate decks emblazoned with all manner of visual treats and, in turn, sells those decks to benefit charities like the National Alliance on Mental Illness. This week, Kamagraph rides again with a combination art opening/hip-hop homage/dance party featuring DJ Dynamite Sol. You’ll see some new works unavailable in any other format, you’ll remember why hip-hop might be the most important genre going and you’ll dance with people who are pumped to hear both those things. We’ve even seen Kamagraph do skate demos before, and that just plain rips. (ADV)
Kamagraph: Ode to Hip-Hop: A Skateboard Art Show: 7 pm Friday, Nov. 25. Free. Tumbleroot Brewery & Distillery, 2791 Agua Fría St., (505) 303-3808
Given that Thanksgiving will be but a memory by the end of this week, we’re officially hitting Christmas-in-your-face season. ‘Tis a time of gifting for way too many people, and the pressure’s mounting with every second you waste! This year, though, why not be a little more thoughtful about from whence your gifts come? Enter the Poeh Winter Market at the Buffalo Thunder Resort & Casino—a massive gathering of more than 100 Indigenous artists who craft fine work across more mediums than we could possibly fit in print. Not only will you find anything from jewelry and clothing to pottery, paintings, sculpture and so on, you’ll be gifting something extraordinary with local roots while supporting our Native siblings. It’s a real win/win/win. (ADV)
Poeh Winter Market: 8 am-4 pm Saturday, Nov. 26 and Sunday, Nov. 27. Free. Buffalo Thunder Resort & Casino, 20 Buffalo Thunder Road, (505) 455-5555
Ah, the library—that glorious book zone where locals can find oodles of things to do, from movement events, book discussions, readings, workshops and more. It’s all pretty good, but perhaps the most notable element of the ongoing happenings at our local libraries is the commitment to youth. Santa Fe’s not an easy town for kids, particularly given the pandemic, but at events like the upcoming Sensory Storytime, parents can offer their kids a chance to engage with stories and play—and meet others, too. Even better, this particular offering was created with kids who have autism and other sensory processing disorders in mind. Oh, you can also check out movies from the library. Neat! (ADV)
Sensory Storytime: 3:15 pm Tuesday, Nov. 29. Free. Vista Grande Public Library, 14 Avenida Torreon, Eldorado, (505) 466-7323