Know Before You Go
This section was produced in collaboration with PQ Monthly, dedicated to serving the LGBTQ+ communities of Oregon, Washington and the Bay Area. PQ Monthly is published on the third Thursday of every month and updated daily online.
Portland has a rich drag and performance art culture that encompasses everything from traditional female impersonation to new-school drag to queer burlesque.
Darcelle XV Showcase
Since 1967, the female impersonators of Darcelle XV and company have been performing a Las Vegas-style cabaret full of sequins and sophistication. In 2016, she was crowned the “Oldest Drag Queen Performer” by the Guinness Book of World Records. She may be in her 80s, but Darcelle XV still knows how to put on a show. This is a Portland institution not to be missed.
Shows at 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday; 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday; reservations recommended
The Superstar Divas Variety Show
The wacky drag queen trio The Superstar Divas hosts a weekly variety show including comedy, skits, singing, game shows, dance and more.
Every Sunday at CC Slaughters
Burlesque S’il Vous Plait
The Burlesque S’il Vous Plait may be Portland’s longest-running burlesque show (since April 2006), but it’s so much more. Started by drag performer (and instructor at the Rose City School of Burlesque) Zora Phoenix in Long Beach, Calif., as an alternative to lip-syncing drag shows, the monthly revue often includes live singing, comedy, burlesque and dance.
First Friday of every month at Crush Bar.
Homomentum – the Musical
Based on a popular queer cabaret of the same name, and penned by its founder, emcee and multi-hyphenate performer, Max Voltage, Homomentum – the Musical is a gender-bending sci-fi fantasy about unicorns saving the world through dance and queer awesomeness.
Portland has a well-established network of venues and theater companies and an increasingly dynamic and diverse small theater scene.
Portland dance has an inventive spirit that welcomes collaborations and often spills beyond the generally accepted boundaries of “dance.”
POW Film Fest showcases films by female directors, along with filmmaker workshops and moderated panels, every March in Portland.