Everyone needs a place to shine, and the Rocky Mountain Shining Stars provide a place for everyone, from drag kings and queens, to trans folks, queer folks, and allies. We caught up with Lamar Cooper of the RMSS Pageant to hear about their awesome organization and their plans to join us at Aurora Pride!
What can we expect from the pageant? Is it just drag, or all kinds of performances?
Our pageant is big on including all individuals. We have transgender individuals, straight individuals, and gay individuals. We have different positions in the pageant and all kinds of roles. We definitely pull all our titles. This year, our junior category is a young man who is hoping to transition soon.
What are the different things people can expect on stage?
We definitely have drag performances, and a lot of those performances have changed with the times. So today, it’s not a lot of ballads and things like that. Now, a lot of our queens and kings are more oriented to the dance routines, fancy moves, things like that. We also have live singers, such as myself. We even have a couple of individuals who do comedy, though we don’t do that at every event. So you can expect all kinds of performances.
What kind of charities does Shining Stars benefit?
We have a beer bust that’s coming up on August 4 at Triangle that benefits Alzheimer’s Disease. We do all kinds of benefits for different things and try and appear at as many Pride events as possible.
What do you do when you perform at Pride events? How do you make those events special?
Most Prides are a little smaller than Denver’s giant PrideFest, so we have a little bit more time to be a part of the activities. So normally, what we would do is, we would be included in doing the parade events, and we set up different types of floats or designs depending on what the theme may be for that year. Then we always try and kind of spread ourselves across the park. We chat with folks, and it’s a good chance to recruit some of those individuals who are very interested in doing what we do.
How did you find out about Aurora Pride?
Actually, we didn’t know a thing about it until last year. We were driving, and I was like, ‘What is going on? There’s a festival or something!’ That was back when it was in front of the city building. And so we stopped, and then we’re like, ‘Wow, this is Pride, child!’ So we went over, and we hung out and watched the festivities. We’ve talked to a couple of people about getting connected this year, but then we lost the connection. And then I saw an advertisement for the event on Facebook, and I thought, ‘Oh my goodness, I need to connect. And so I made some phone calls and connected.
Do you all have any special connection to Aurora?
I actually live in Aurora. The rest of my royalty is all over Colorado, in Denver, Grand Junction, and there’s even someone in New Mexico. I think it’s really exciting to see a Pride in Aurora. You know, we’re we’re almost as big as Denver, but yet we had nothing. And now we’ve got something. And hopefully, it’s something that’s going to be able to expand and get even bigger.