Archive for the ‘style & fashion’ Category

Our Pink Martini Music Video Won 4th Place!

Our prizes?


Two guest list tickets for an upcoming Pink Martini show, as well as some “other gifts” (possibly P.M. schwag?!). We’re contemplating one of the Hollywood Bowl Pink Martini shows in September. But, it’s tempting to save up for a European concert locale.

What people are saying


Pink Martini’s Business Manager shared this:

“We’ve been consistently amused by your video since its submission. In fact, it was the first video we received that we really loved, and at that time, unsure how the contest would go, we were relieved to know we had at least one gem. By far the best of the “home video” type entries we received.

We’d love to…post it permanently on our YouTube channel and on our website, and use it at other venues too. Thanks again for your video, and thank your fabulous cast for us as well!”

The creation of the video was a joy, but the contest announcements have brought it all to life again!

See their facebook page for fan’s comments on our video and to follow the remaining contest, and click “Like” to keep up-to-date on their concerts and activities.

The Final “Cut”: Music Video Contest Entry

I now present to you my entry for La Cieca’s (parterre.com) light-hearted lip dub video competition:

http://www.vimeo.com/12347347

Although a winner hasn’t been announced, happily, my entry was featured today on parterre.com: Darkest Before the Dawn

[UPDATE: I won! My video received the winning prize worth $200.00, and cries of “Bravissimo!,” “genius,” “brilliant,” “poignant” and “hilarious.” Woo-hoo!]

The song is opera diva Renée Fleming’s recent crossover single “Endlessly” (originally by Muse). It was GOBS of fun to create, and this is Faux Paul’s official video debut! A tragic tranny mess? Visionary? You be the judge, but it’s nothing if not fun. Plus, I didn’t know I was a blonde (the look chosen to APPROXIMATE the album cover)…the results proved me SO wrong.

For non-opera aficionados, the paper dolls are of Peter Gelb (he runs the Metropolitan Opera), Barbara Walters (operagoer), Mary Zimmerman (director), James Levine (music director and conductor at the Met), and La Cieca! (Yes, the inside jokes abound.)

I invite you to share comments directly below the video at vimeo.com link provided above! Praise me, roast me, sex me up, and so on!

Here’s the official collectible album cover:

“Ohayoo Ohio” Music Video Contest Entry

Eleven months ago CJ and I launched the plans for my 40th Birthday celebration at the stylish, Mid-Century resort: The Century Palm Springs. Taking our favorite band’s festive inspiration, and our plans to imbibe cocktails aplenty, we named the weekend “Pink Martini-Land!”

Fast forwarding to one week before our departure, CJ made the very happy discovery on facebook of the Pink Martini music video contest. When I saw that “Ohayoo Ohio” (“Hello Ohio”) was one of the options, it was clearly kismet (I was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio). The stars had aligned, and we heeded their creative calling!

We hope you have even half as much fun as we did creating it! And now, we cross our fingers and hope that the judges get swept up into our world of muumuu runway shows, gleeful synchronized swimming, swingin’ faux percussion, “Mrs. Groper” (CJ as a baked Mrs. Roper-type) and more!

My 40th Bday in Palm Springs: Pink Martini-Land!

My head is still a bit in the clouds, after an unforgettable 40th birthday celebration in Palm Springs, entitled “Pink Martini-Land!”. It was our second time at The Century resort, and I already can’t wait to go back. My friends made it so very special, *sigh*! Wanna stay there yourself, or see details, go to www.centurypalmsprings.com

The Century garden and poolside, with a perfect view of the San Jacinto Mountains.

Me and my $9.00 muumuu!

See more fabulous desert chic photos —>

“Pink Martini-Land!”

I’m off to the second installment of my 40th B-day festivities, entitled:

Toodles for now! Meet me at poolside!

“Halestorm”: a Masquerade for Denise Hale

Lucky me that my 40th B-day landed on the same day as one of the most fabulous San Francisco parties of the year: Halestorm.” It was a masquerade hosted by Ken Fulk at his SOMA interior design/staging studio, in honor of socialite Denise Hale. It also marked the creation of the Denise Hale Fund at the SF SPCA.

The entire cast of my current show “Pearls Over Shanghai” was invited to attend, in costume. (Perhaps Denise’s attendance at our March performance was research?) Other attending luminaries included the Newsoms, Michael Tilson Thomas, Ann Getty, Mark Leno, etc.

It was an unforgettable night, highlit by the yummy “Halestorm” cocktail (vodka, lime juice, thyme sprig+), and the parting gift, a breakfast McMuffin-sort of sandwich, wrapped in a branded wax paper sleeve. Perfection!

Entertainment included jazz singer Paula West, “Pearls…” cast member Connie Champagne, as well as faux queen Fauxnique. Upstairs we showed our moves on the dance floor.

Here are some of the priceless pix from our fun in the “Dressed to Kill” photobooth! As you can see, Chang gets luckier and luckier with each photo…but, by the end looses his seat to Russian femme fatale Petrushka (Veronica Klaus):

See More Changtastic Photos —>

The Fine Art of Plate Portraiture

For my 40th Bday (last saturday) I commissioned some of the finest artistes in the Bay Area to create a distinct portrait of me or other luminary present.

(Translation: A bunch of friends drew a face on a plate.)

Here are the results…from brilliant, to f!@#$d up, to amusing:

Me as Chang, in Thrillpeddlers' Cockettes' "Pearls Over Shanghai." (Won "Most Creative.")

Me as Chang (Back, same artiste; Depicting my backside, revealed through satin boxer trap door!)

Cro-magnon Paul (Won "Most F!@#$d Up!" Created by artist without looking down at plate.)

Fuzzy Paul (Very impressive symbology in the ex-Zillerating linework.)

Continue Viewing Stunning Visual Displays —>

My Drag Name: Lost & Found!

Well, my over six month search for my drag name has come to an end. I (think) I found the pot ‘o gold at the end of that rainbow! But, the fun of getting there is worth sharing.

You  may remember last October, I included an online poll here on jcm to help make the selection, and some of you weighed-in. At that time, I was most tickled by the more jokey, lower-common-denominator names. Well, I’ve come to my senses, and have more recently been drawn to more ownable names, more directly linked to me or my name in some way. I also realized I wanted a name that was adaptable, and wasn’t going to be so specific it pigeon-holed me, should I want to get her on stage (but, of course!). She WILL have a private debut in Palm Springs next weekend!

Here is the short-list of names I toyed with, and then…the final pick! (They’re listed here by what they’re based on.) Enjoy…

My First Name


Paulie Girl
Paulyanna
(yes, I can tend towards rose-colored optimism and idealism at times)
Paulie Baby
(ala a childhood nickname)

My Last Name


Zillernelli (ala Farinelli)
Zildo (a one-time, h.s. band-camp nickname I hated, but considered reclaiming)
Agnes DeZille
Killer Ziller
Zilleratura
(ala coloratura)
The Great Zildini (via Woody)
Phyllis Ziller (via Jef & Val)
Zillbinetta

My Hometown


CinCin (Italian for cheers, usually pronounced cheen-cheen. In japanese “chin” is slang for dick.)
CinCin Addy
Cincinasty
(ala one of the cities nicknames: Cincinasti)

Opera/Musical


Turandon’t (via La Cieca, thanks to a Parterre blog post title)
Shamneris! (via Gil)
Hella Longaria! (ala Eva Longoria, via Paul…I think)
Ariadne auf Nachos
Holleratura
(via Heidi)
Fannie Girl
(ala Funny Girl)
Elektranny
Zerbonetta
Arabella Strauss

Soignee River (ala “Swanee River;” soignee = polished, well-groomed; showing sophisticated elegance)

Misc.


Moniker
Faboo (a word I made up, short for fabulous!)
Sham I. Am (a nod to Dr. Seuss, and me being a ham)
Ham I. Am
Demi Monde
(demimonde = mistress, on the fringe of society, a wealthy lover)
Tuck (ie: what does a drag queen do?)
Giggles (something I do a lot of)
Pop Tart
Vanity Schmanity
Esoterico
(a collection of items of a special, rare, novel, or unusual quality)
Toots E. Pop
Addy H. Dee (from ADHD)

After much ado, I now give you…


Faux Paul (as in faux pas, or “a violation of accepted social norms”)

Bonus: (My Partner) CJ’s Drag Names


Edamame (food)
Ana Constance Diet
(food!)
Hella Dee Lish
(food!!)
Boniva Selexa Viagra
(prescription drugs) his final pick!

Denise Hale Attends “Pearls Over Shanghai”

March 27, 2010

Since I was playing Scrumbly Koldewyn’s jazzy percussion sidekick “Hung Lo” in this evening’s performance of Pearls Over Shanghai,” I decided to do the pre-show rounds with my camera, and attempt to capture the unique and bustling spirit of my fellow Thrillpeddlers as they put on their costumes and faces in the dressing rooms and other backstage haunts at The Hypnodrome!

Lili Frustrata (Eric Wertz) & Wigs Aglow

I was lingering in the loading dock, hoping for someone in full costume to come or go, so I could capture that amusing juxtaposition (ie: Madame Gin Sling squatting in full headdress, see below). This landing serves as the performers’ backstage passageway, for coming and going for entrances throughout the evening. It was also used as the audience emergency escape route in the notorious flood last December. During the show, the performers open the metal garage-like door, pass down the sidewalk in front of an antique store, and reenter through the main front door or wooden, sliding stage door to make their (memorable) entrance. On a rainy night, with full Cockettes’ makeup, I recall this seeming like quite a challenge the first few weekends I performed. Now it’s old hat, and part of the fun!

Original Cockette Rumi Missabu as Madame Gin Sling

I had just captured a pensive photo of our SM (Jon) taking a momentary break on the loading dock, and was standing on the sidewalk. A very well dressed woman, with sleek, dark hair, pulled-back with a classy band approached me on the sidewalk. She wasn’t the type you normally encounter in these parts. She asked me if or how she was going to be helped up onto the loading dock. I thought she was just jesting with us, in Cockettes’ fashion. I then noticed a large, black limousine waiting on the street, complete with driver and passengers shrouded behind tinted glass. Clearly, this woman preceeded the mystery guests in the limo. “Who were they?,” I wondered.

Lili's Platforms: The envy of ALL!

Perhaps readying myself for the show, and already being a smidge in character, I told her with a degree of sass, and in so many words that part of the fun was helping oneself onto the dock, as many of the characters (ie: Madame Gin Sling, Petrushka, Lili Frustrata, etc.) manage to do it, despite their considerable platform pumps!

When it became clear she mistook this performer’s passageway as the main entry, I shared with her that it was around on the other side of the theatre, and pointed her in that direction.

During the show, as I played my various percussion instruments, I enjoyed observing this woman, as well as another woman with finely coiffed silver hair and stylish yellow and black print blouse, in the comfy Turkish Lounges. Both surely had the finest posture and carriage of anyone I’ve ever seen sit there! Somehow, each smile on their face felt particularly well earned.

When, after the show, from the dressing room we overheard Scrumbly hailed by socialite Denise Hale, it became clear who was in our midst. (I believe the woman I first interacted with was author Diane Dorrans Saeks.) Scrumbly shared that back in the day, when performing at The Palace Theatre, The Cockettes’ also often received socialites and politicians in their audiences, and that they contributed greatly to the overall milieu.

Having “attended Baron Alexis de Rede’s Orientalist Ball in Paris”, and even “slipping semi-incognito into the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Shanghai,” (according to The Style Saloniste link above) Denise certainly knows a thing or two about the real AND fantasy world we conjure up.

“Chang VI” & “Hung Lo”

[UPDATE: SF Chronicle’s Leah Garchik made mention of Hales’ attendance in her 4.1.10 column, as did the BAR.]

From the Bowels: 80s Pairs’ Olympics Hot Messes

In preparation for the Vancouver pairs competition I dug up some of the performances from the 80s to jog my memory on how that competitive field looked, and how far that discipline has come. At the time, I was graduating from elementary (’84) and high school (’88). I MUST have watched these Games with my mom, but don’t remember any of these performances. Upon review, it’s no wonder why! And, in the midst of all the complaints about the CoP System, a peek back at the 6.0 system shows some politicized judging at it’s worst.

Valova & Vasiliev Reign

First, I came across this priceless human interest story, featuring ’84 Sarajevo champions Valova & Vasiliev (he the coach of Mukhortova & Trankov). After starting out like a Bel Ami video (prurient giggling by babbling brook), it shows them buckled down at the Leningrad Institute of Physical Culture, “a veritable medal factory.”

What a glimpse into the thriving machine that was Mother Russia (the Soviet Union). Boy, they sure appear to have them under a tight thumb (not that that grip is any looser these days). And, what a reminder of Moskvina’s longevity. The video also features their flawed, but gold-medal Classical Beatles LP, which ran out of gas at the end (as compared to the Carruthers’ flawless performance).

Fast forward four years to the Calgary Games (1988), and V&V display the most deliciously dated program and costumery imaginable, with their “The Final Countdown” LP. I was giddy to discover this pinnacle of the “Eye of the Tiger” alpha-male jam genre was used for a program. This program leaps to the top of my skating camp classics! One part Star Trek crew (with diagonal, cross-breast bands), one part bumblebee, their costumes, complete with black tights for her are in the worst taste…but, what could be better?! Her blouse/skirt one-piece sort of drips off her backside, saying “look at my ass,” ala Weir. Perhaps this is where he takes some of his Rusky fashion inspiration? Their SP costumes are even more ridiculous: Flash Gordon + A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. How precious that Dick refers to her as “plump,” and feigns it as a compliment.

American Pairs Best

Back to Sarajevo, this time with the Carruthers’ flawless LP. The program and music hold up pretty well, even in hindsight. But, it featured the (homemade?) costume he recently donned on NBC’s Vancouver “Figure Skating Review & Preview.” They have amazing attack and speed throughout, and their overall unison would have to be counted among some of the best we see even today. I don’t feel it suffers by comparison to V&V in “expression.” I sure miss these pairs’ elements: “hydrant lifts,” “lateral twist lifts,” and their penultimate move (“pulls”). It was also interesting to learn what a “Tango Camel” is. Their SP, to Herb Alpert/Muzak-style quasi-disco is a hoot, although well skated.

Watson & Oppegard’s Calgary LP features Peter’s hawt frosted doo (shades of Donna Mills in Knots Landing). His costume is also priceless. To think I had an outrageous crush on him, AND he was considered quite the on-ice heartthrob? On what planet does a straight man present this way? So hard to believe he is now married to Karen Kwan.

Tiger Beat Oppegard: Pensive Peter

Their triple twist has NO height…she practically completes it on the ground. And, I’m amazed they held onto the bronze with a fall. In the deep pair’s field in Vancouver this would NOT have medalled. Peter seems to acknowledge this here. Their warmth towards each other in the kiss-n-cry is touching, but don’t miss the glimpse of the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader look-alike! Their latin disco SP (ala “Copacabana”) is a gay ol’ time, or gringe-worthy…depending on how you see it.

While we’re on the issue of falling in competition. Check out this amazing profile, featuring Sports Psychologist, Dr. David Coppel. Dr. David…any room on your white couch for head cases Sasha or Alissa?

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