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Meet Olivia Gonzales of Queer As Punk

Today we’d like to introduce you to Olivia Gonzales.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Olivia. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
I started performing in the Los Angeles drag scene a little over three years ago and not soon after, started throwing an event with a fellow queen. I was doing a lot of the work and not being recognized for it, while they reaped all the benefits that came with it.

That person soon after made a public Facebook post bashing me for choosing to end our business relationship, and fellow LA queens chimed in – “She’s not a ‘real’ queen.” From that incident, it shifted change inside of me. I realized a lot of the misogyny that takes place in the drag community, and I how much I needed the anger I felt to fuel change in the spaces around me. Not just for myself, but for other non-cis-gay performers.

I wanted to create a space that EVERY body, regardless of their gender identity was able to express themselves freely and safely. So often we are used as props or tokens in the big world of LA’s cis-gay drag community. What I’ve tried to do with my show is celebrate us, and make it, so we have an equal opportunity to grow as performers in a space that appreciates the art we produce.

At Queer As Punk, you’ll find drag queens, drag kings, bio/hyper queens, trans and non-binary performers as well as live music! We always try to host bands and musicians in the queer community to showcase local music. It also brings variety to our show, so the audience always sees something new and different.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
A struggle we have often come across is not having a stable place to call home. I’ve had to fight to make sure the places that host us respect our audience and our performers.

Until recently, we had not even been given the opportunity to showcase our event at a gay/queer bar. Thankfully, The Virgil and Redline have been amazing and are where we currently have residencies.

Please tell us about Queer As Punk.
We are one of the few shows in Los Angeles that is run exclusively by a fab and non-binary persons. We pride ourselves in being able to provide a safe space for queers that often get overlooked or marginalized in other spaces.

We are also proud of being able to provide a platform for queer musicians and performance artists to express themselves. We are also proud of our success in being able to give back. Throwing QAP as a struggling artist, myself hasn’t been easy.

Which is why we always have a door fee as a donation towards your entertainers. 100% of that door money goes to the artists who perform on the bill. Being able to cultivate a community and party who so generously pay to see what we have in store is successful to us because it goes right to those who are working their hardest to entertain.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Branden Marcus, Scott Free, Jacob Irvin

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Fabiola

    March 19, 2019 at 22:57

    You are an amazing queen and I love you

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