If you're not familiar with the weekly spirituality-inspired cabaret act at the Manor, you're missing out. Big time. Hosted by WIG (Wild Inspirational Gatherings) Ministries, this weekly is unique. It's one part spiritual, one part comedy, and one part musical. Oh, and one part drag queen.
Last night's service was led by the wonderful special guest, and sometimes advice columnist Reverend Trinity. While attending a sermon presented by a drag queen might seem like it would garner a first class ticket to hell, don't rule it out completely. WIG does not make a mockery of religion. Their mission is to empower the gay community, and help them find self esteem, self-worth, and spirituality. The idea is to take a campy, theatrical approach to religiosity to develop a healthy tight-knit social network. WIG ministry's site says they are trying to enlighten the gay community in "reaching their higher gay power a.k.a. their 'Inner Fabulousness.'"
What practice would be complete then without a choir? The WIG Gayngsta Choir started off the night with a brilliant mashup of "I Will Survive" and Destiny's Child's "Survivor." With lots of jazz hands and simple choreography, the choir managed to reel me in. If only they could harness the power of the internet to hold my attention. Oh? Then they screened a clip of a Marilyn Manson-obsessed teen singing an aria on America's Got Talent and making the audience cry? Checkmate. I was saved.
Next, we took a moment to meditate. Reverend Trinity led prayer, guiding the room through each chakra of the body, with full participation from the audience. Some new age music played in the background. I thought for sure that this is it, I would be changed forever. After I opened my eyes and realized that it hadn't happened, it was time for the Gayngsta Choir to perform "Seasons of Love" from Rent. It was then that I felt as if I'd died and gone to gay heaven.
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While Trinity had a great voice, she was also hilarious. The two highlights of the night were when the Reverend opted to collect offerings with her cleavage instead of a plate. Then there was the moment when she delivered the punchline to the finest joke of the night: "Why did the chicken cross the football field? Because he heard the referee was blowing fouls." At one point I couldn't believe I was actually chanting, "promise to be nice to someone even if they don't look like their internet picture," in unison with a group of grown humans.
While outrageous and fun, the organization sports a noble spiritual backbone. The fun is light and campy, with no intention of offending any sects. Providing additional classes that focus on "coming out," "dating," and more, this event has absolute potential.