By Charlie Cook, Programs Assistant
The history of 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals is often lost or omitted from official records. This can create a false impression that queer and trans identities are a recent phenomenon instead of the truth, which is that they have always existed.
MONOVA seeks to tell a diverse range of stories of people from the North Shore, but this can be challenging when there is little documented history of particular groups. While the search for 2SLGBTQIA+ stories is ongoing, it’s crucial that MONOVA ensures the queer community feels seen, represented and welcome.
A Celebration of Queer Joy
With this in mind, on Saturday, July 29 join us at MONOVA: Museum of North Vancouver for a full day of queer friendly events leading up to Vancouver Pride Week.
These events will explore queer joy, the challenges of researching queer history, and the role that art can play in sharing these stories.
Join us as we celebrate Pride in North Vancouver! Details and ticket info is listed below.
Pride is a celebration for all, and by offering pay-what-you-can museum admission for the drag storytime and panel discussion we hope that everyone in the community will feel welcome and be able to attend this event.
Generously supported by Neptune Terminals and Presentation House Theatre.
CAMP!Fire Capers: Drag Storytime
An all ages drag show where a diverse range of local drag talent reads stories from the Campfire Capers programming and performs family friendly drag numbers!
CAMP!fire Capers combines stories from the museum’s preschool story hour with the joy of drag storytime. Featuring Karmella Barr, BlueeJoy, Jordy Matheson, and Justin Abit.
10:30 am to 12:00 pm
Tickets: Museum admission is ‘pay what you can’ until 5:00 pm ($10-15 suggested).
Audience: Children ages 3 to 8 and their caregivers
Panel Discussion: Sharing Queer History
Join Glenn Tkach, professional storyteller and creator of The Really Gay History Tour, for a discussion of topics related to sharing queer history. Panelists include Carmel Tanaka, Derek Jang and Ron Dutton.
Learn about the challenges of finding local stories, the importance of archives, and the role of changing language from queer community members.
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Tickets: Museum admission is ‘pay what you can’ until 5:00 pm ($10-15 suggested).
History Inspired Drag: Drag Show and Dance Party with DJ O Show
The final event of MONOVA’s Pride Celebration will be a night of drag inspired by local North Vancouver history!
This show features an incredible cast of drag artists sharing performances based on their own research and connections to the North Shore. Each performance features video projection artwork created from MONOVA’s archival materials.
Hosted by Dee Twenty, performers include Dolly Hardon, Flemme Fatale, Dust and K.C. Roces with video projections by Mily Mumford.
Boutique Pride-themed catering will be provided by Boy With a Knife and legendary Afro-Indigenous Hip Hop and R&B artist DJ O Show hosts MONOVA’s dance party. Bar sales (card payments only – Visa, Mastercard, debit).
6:00 pm to 11:00 pm
Doors: 6:00 pm
Drag Show: 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Dance Party: 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm
Tickets: $25, price includes admission to galleries, history themed drag show, Pride-themed catering from Boy with a Knife, bar and dance party with DJ O Show.
Meet the Artists: CAMP!Fire Capers: Drag Storytime
Justin Abit (he/him) does ‘a bit’ of everything in his performances to spread joy to all humans, including lots of glitter, dancing and extra fun costumes! He holds a few titles, including Imperial Crown Prince 51, with the main purpose of raising money for charitable causes that help the Rainbow (Gender & Sexual Diversity (2SLGBTQ+)) community!
BlueeJoy (she/her) is one of the few Japanese drag performers in Vancouver. She debuted on stage in July 2022 and started hosting shows only three months later. Now BlueeJoy produces her own show called Joy of Drag every month in Gastown, Vancouver. She is also known as Ramen Queen and her “ramen shows” at Japanese restaurants are consistently sold out. BlueeJoy brings emotion to the stage and you will never forget her smile and joyful personality.
Karmella Barr (they/them) has been doing drag in Vancouver for 8 years and counting. In their shows they are seen as an incredibly personable queen known for the amazing balance of emotion and glamour that they bring to their performances. This amazing balance earned them the title of “Miss Congeniality” in 2016 and then eventually Miss Cobalt 6 in 2017.
Karmella is currently the 51st elected Emprex of the Dogwood Monarchist Society. Working with Emperor Scotty B. Boxx to raise money for three charities: Urban Native Youth Association, Vancouver Black Therapy and Advocacy Fund and Health Initiative for Men. Please follow their socials to find out more opportunities to participate in community events and help them raise money for charity.
Host: Jordy Matheson
Jordy Matheson (they/he) is a theatre artist, educator, and improviser living on unceded Coast Salish territory. Since 2015, they have been an active member of the improv community, performing with Tightrope Theatre, QueerProv, Little Mountain Improv, and others. As an educator he has taught theatre and improv for the City of Delta, City of Surrey, Carousel Theatre for Young People, and others.
Meet the Artists: Sharing Queer History Panel Discussion
Glenn Tkach (he/him) is a professional storyteller with a background in theatre and live performance. In 2018, he developed The Really Gay History Tour, which he still leads every week with Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours. Since then, he has continued to dig into the lost and forgotten stories of local queer history, and bring them into the light. He brings his knowledge and storytelling expertise into schools, companies, and all kinds of organizations through his own queer storytelling company, The Pink Hat.
Derek A. Jang
Derek A. Jang (he/him) is a Certified Interpretive Trainer who has spent his career engaging guests at parks, aquariums, natural history museums, and historic sites around British Columbia. Today Derek manages the Interpretive Delivery team at Britannia Mine Museum, a not-for-profit organization located on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) First Nation. Derek’s team leads underground tours, curriculum programs and behind-the-scenes tours that explore the history and legacy of a historic copper mine.
Carmel Tanaka (she/her) is the founder and executive director of JQT Vancouver, and the curator of the BC Jewish Queer & Trans Oral History Project and the Jewpanese Project. She also runs the Cross Cultural Walking Tours in May for Asian & Jewish Heritage Months and in June for Pride Month.
Ron Dutton (he/him) is a retired librarian and the founder of the BC Gay and Lesbian Archives. Since the 1970s, Ron has been collecting artefacts, posters, and documents related to the 2SLQBTQIA+ community in British Columbia. This steadily growing collection was housed in Ron’s own West End apartment from its inception till 2018 when the BC Gay and Lesbian Archives fonds was donated to the City of Vancouver archives. Ron strives to maintain a diverse collection, particularly focusing on women, people of colour, two-spirited people, and people with disabilities, whose histories are often underrepresented by Vancouver’s white- and male-dominated media.
Meet the Artists: Drag Show and Dance Party
Host: Dee Twenty
Since 2014, Dee Twenty (they/them) has brought their own special blend of drag and burlesque to many stages around BC and Western Canada, including Wet Coast Productions, the Geekenders, the Edmonton Burlesque Festival, April O’Peel Productions, and The Isle of Tease Burlesque Festival. Nowadays, you’ll find this Trans Clown with a mic at hand, emceeing at the lower mainland’s most exciting shows.
Making up one fourth of the Minh Dynasty, Dolly Hardon (she/her) is East Van’s premier rodeo princess. Inspired by growing up in rural Alberta, Dolly is an irreverent, fun performer with no shortage of southern hospitality.
Flemme Fatale (they/them) is a trans Drag Fairy! They bring their unique, British charm and gender bending to every single one of their incendiary performances. Originally from Northern England, Flemme Fatale is best known (in the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples) for their ravishing lip syncs or their infamous live readings of their original writing.
Dust Cwaine (they/them) has commanded stages with their signature drag art experiences across Western Canada, as either a performer themselves or the mastermind behind countless drag shows. As a songwriter, Dust pushes themselves into a stark new spotlight, one that’s intimate, delicate, and personal while still leaving room for live-wire alternative rock outbursts and a tender sense of humour.
Dust’s universe comes into focus out of anthemic ballads and tender melodies on sexuality, fatness, sacrifice, and friendship. Powered by bursts of choral refrains and buzzing synthesizer solos, their sound has emerged as a top-down, blast-out-the windows, angst-ridden catharsis in uniquely vulnerable looks at their own inner world.
K.C. Roces (aka Kier Junos) (he/him) has been performing music in B.C.’s Lower Mainland since 2008. Roces is a multi-instrumentalist and plays several styles of music, writing under the moniker Lowercase Dream. His self-titled 2020 release combines elements of dream-pop, Bossa-nova, and folk music. His new work expands on this sound, adding elements of trip-hop and electronic music. Roces won a Fraser Valley Music Award in 2021 for the alternative/indie singer-songwriter category. He has previously received the Inclusivity Award for Excellence by a Queer-Identifying Artist, and in 2022, Excellence of a BIMPOC Artist.
Video Projection Artist: Mily Mumford
Mily Mumford (they/them) is a writer/director/producer in film and theatre as well as a science communicator and researcher. They are also a drag performer and the lead creative of the drag series The Cinephiles combining film, projection and drag. They love mixing film and education in a museum setting and work as the multimedia producer at the HR Macmillan Space Centre. In addition to creative work in theatre and film they have an MSc. in Interactive Technology where they explored using VR for mental health support.
DJ O Show
Orene Askew, aka DJ O Show, (she/her) brings energy and expertise to every event she DJ’s and hosts. She brings professionalism and passion and remains true to her love for hip hop and R&B, incorporating beats to ensure you never want to leave the dance floor! Coming from a diverse background, O Show is driven by her passion. She is Afro-Indigenous and a proud member of the Squamish Nation. Feeling as though she stood out in a unique way, she embraced both her cultural backgrounds and incorporates the teachings she has learned into everything she does.
We rely on contributions, monthly or one-time gifts, to help MONOVA safeguard and expand our community’s archival and museum collections, build learning experiences and inspire future generations.
Donations are accepted through the Friends of the North Vancouver Museum & Archives Society, Registered Charity No. 89031 1772 RR0001.
We respectfully acknowledge that MONOVA: Museum and Archives of North Vancouver is located on the traditional lands of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) First Nations, whose ancestors have lived here for countless generations. We are grateful for the opportunity to live, work and learn with them on unceded Coast Salish Territory.