Catch ’SMASHED Showgirls With Something Extra’ at Club Café
SMASHED! Showgirls With Something Extra, the new monthly revue that premieres tonight at Club Café, promises to be a bit something old (vaudeville) and new (Top 40 hits). According to one of its performers, Rainbow Frite, "the show is a cohesive vaudevillian style production that embraces the grandness of drag and promotes the core of the art: PERFORMANCE!"
Rainbow Frite co-stars with "showgirls with something extra" Miss Kris Kneivil, and Lili Whiteass in an evening of fast-paced song, dance and outrageousness at 8pm, October 4 at Club Café. Doors 7:30 PM; Showtime 8PM; $15 cover includes show, post show bash and admission to Club Cafe’s nightclub.
EDGE caught up with a breathless Rainbow Frite (Sean McCarthy) as he was putting together the final touches for the show. A drag entertainer for some 15 years, Rainbow Frite has performed in Boston, New York and Provincetown. He settled in Boston 2002 where he’s worked for the Lyons Group (Axis, Avalon), as well as at other clubs and in such "artsy" productions as TraniChic. He became most memorable as the colofull divine like "Technicolour Goddess of Trash" as host of Saturday nights at Manray.
Currently Sean "Rainbow Frite" performs every Monday at "All Star Mondays" at Machine nightclub and host karaoke every Tuesday at Jacques Cabaret. He is also a "family"/ company member of the American Repertory Theatre most recently appearing in "The Lily’s Revenge" and "The Donkey Show."
EDGE: How did the show come about?
Rainbow Frite: Susan Esthera (of Club Café) approached myself and Kris Kneivil because she wanted to bring a cohesive, well thought out and rehearsed show to Club Cafe. She was inspired by shows in Provincetown and wanted to bring such entertainment to Boston. Kris and I sought out Lili Whiteass to join us in this collaborative.
EDGE: Obviously you’re referencing both the movie "Showgirls" and the TV show "Smash" with your title - is that just cleverness or do you reference them in the show?
Rainbow Frite: Well, we were not thinking showgirls as in the movie "Showgirls." The term is simply vernacular for girls in show business. But "SMASHED" is our satirical take on the TV show. We reference the series but not explicitly, rather through the general nature of show business and the life of a showgirl, and the grandiosity of show.
EDGE: What will you be doing in the show?
Rainbow Frite: I don’t want to reveal too much but we run the gamut with group numbers, dance, song and interactive games for fierce prizes. For instance, "Tip Tap Trivia," where a cast member taps dances while I ask a trivia question. Get it right win a chance for an amazing prize. It’s probably best to see it happen as opposed to hear or read about it (lol). Bottom line the energy level is high and positive. Which allows the audience to relax, spectate and decompress. That is what hard working people want at the end of a work week; high spirits and fun! There are no bitchy queens here, honey! We are here to entertain you and we do a damn good job!
EDGE: Do you each take different roles?
Rainbow Frite: We do. It has been quite interesting how well we have worked together and organically embraced our strengths to designate roles; both logistic and creative. As far as playing roles we each have our own character-driven drag personae, which stay true in our series of numbers and interactions.
EDGE: Are you competitive with each other?
Rainbow Frite: Yes. I hate them both. TOTALLY KIDDING. We have been colleagues for years and are so solid in our person and drag characters, the insecurity which often drives such competitive divas does not factor in this project. We have actually become very close which has contributed to an amazing outcome.
EDGE: How did performing in drag come about for you?
Rainbow Frite: I was a theater kid as long as I could remember and it was a true organic happening. I started playing female roles which I took to nightclubs and other theatrical venues.
EDGE: What do you think of the Boston drag scene?
Rainbow Frite: I am not sure if there is a Boston type. And the up and coming queens are quite promising. I feel that at times we are not as taken seriously as queens from other cities. But there is defiantly a revolution of FIERCENESS afoot! So watch out Boston!!!
EDGE: Is being a drag queen today more dependent on being outrageous or being talented?
Rainbow Frite: There should be a balance of both. I feel that some try to be outrageous for outrageous sake, which hurts performance. Performance and talent should come first. I personally have been pigeonholed in the past for my look, but when people see what I do on stage I believe I gain a lot of respect. Bottom line newbie queens: You betta work - work as hard on your act as you do on your look and make song choices that make sense with your aesthetic.
EDGE: Who are your role models?
Rainbow Frite: So many: Lady Bunny for sure, Jackie Beat, Divine, Bette Midler, Cher... Okay I am becoming a stereotype... lol
EDGE: What can someone takeaway from your show?
Rainbow Frite: A great experience! And a monthly destination for a great show! Also that drag queens are great entertainers.
EDGE: And by calling the show "SMASHED!," are you telling the audience something about you and your co-stars sobriety?
Rainbow Frite: Lol. Not at all "SMASHED" is a parody on the show and shows that we take joy in laughing at ourselves and laughing at the innate humor in life. Especially in the entertainment industry. And a few cocktails never hurt... Especially for the audience: the more you drink the prettier we are!!!
You can catch Rainbow Frite, Miss Kris Kneivil, and Lili Whiteass in SMASHED! Showgirls With Something Extra, October 4 at Club Café. Doors 7:30 PM; Showtime 8PM; $15 cover includes show, post show bash and admission to Club Cafe’s nightclub. For more information, visit the Club Café website.