Reignbow showcase highlights talent of LGBTQ+ community


Photo by Cheyenne Tang

At Reignbow 2019, drag performer Neon Calypso puts on a stunning show for the audience.

Petrina Danardatu, news correspondent

Local dance group and LGBTQ+ activists Queens with a Mission, or QWAM, hosted its second annual Reignbow talent showcase for both LGBTQ+ and ally performers Oct. 5 at the Royale Nightclub.

The showcase featured various dynamic dance groups, vocalists, drag queen performances and even a couple of fashion shows, with a total of 115 performers. There was an hour before the showcase, as well as two intermissions in between, when the spectating space was transformed into a dancefloor for both the audience and performers to mingle, dance and party together. 

“The Reignbow event is not only a celebration of artistry, but a celebration of identity,” said Gabriel Colon-Sciabarrasi, co-founder and co-director of QWAM.

Cheyenne Tang
Dalin Celamy, a member of QWAM, dances as part of the group’s showstopping performance.

Dance performances included Zello Dance Crew’s head-to-toe neon and party-inspired piece, Derek Moore’s entrancing narrative movement featuring dancers in black bird masks, Lilly Rose Valour’s Beyoncé-inspired choreography, We The Females’, or WTF, energetic and passionate performance and QWAM’s own stunning, dynamic performances. 

Figie Cruz, a 25-year-old dancer and choreographer from Salem, Massachusetts, said although he doesn’t identify as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, this didn’t inhibit his experience. 

“That’s the beautiful thing about dance,” Cruz said. “It brings us all together.” 

Vocalist performances included R&B singer Emmanuella and spunky pop singers Kiana Perreault and Ella WM. The drag performances featured Pristine Christine, Brown Suga, Adriana Trenta and Neon Calypso, with each queen as unique and charming as the next.  

The fashion shows featured two designers — Bhen Alan and Lady Ice. Alan, a contemporary figure artist in Massachusetts, showcased pieces centered around gender-bending fashion, including denim jackets with painted icons from the entertainment industry (such as Lady Gaga, David Bowie and Billy Porter) to promote recycling and upcycling. 

Lady Ice showcased her Blvck Ice custom line, with models dancing down the catwalk in a refreshing and creative presentation of both the models’ talent and the artistry of the pieces. 

“QWAM was borne out of a mission to help people fall in love with their self-confidence and promote being who you want to be,” Colon-Sciabarrasi said. 

Fernando Zevallos, another QWAM co-founder and co-director, described QWAM as “one big family.” The group champions this message of unity across the Boston dance community, as well as the greater LGBTQ+ community around the Northeast. 

“We all come together as one and strive for the same thing: the love for each other and the love for dance,” Zevallos said. 

Quinn Somerside, a 29-year-old social worker from Miami, Florida, expressed their gratitude for the space QWAM created. 

“Boston doesn’t have enough LGBTQ+ spaces, really,” Somerside said. “I’m happy to see a space for expression and creativity. [QWAM] did a good job.” 

Zevallos and Colon-Sciabarrasi hope the annual Reignbow showcase continues to grow each year, as the word is spread throughout the “QWAM fam” networks and beyond.