January 27, 2006
Volume 34
Issue 04
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Wednesday, Dec 02, 2020



Past Emperor and Empress complete their banner trilogy
Past Emperor and Empress complete their banner trilogy
by Sara Michelle Fetters - Special to the SGN

As twentieth anniversaries go, the one coming up for former Imperial Court of Seattle (ISCSORE) Emperor Rainier XI Paul Bigley is one he plans to cherish. He'll do so, not with a bold performance or a brassy new outfit, but by looking up in delight at the banners hanging from the ceiling. Banners that celebrate past ISCSORE monarchs. Banners he helped bring to life.

"It's been a monstrous undertaking," says Bigley. "I almost don't know how former Empress, Olympia XXV Peaches O'Day and I were able to do it. Still, we are projecting that all of the banners will indeed 'fly' by Coronation 2006 in February. What a tribute!"

As part of making sure those Banners do indeed fly, the final fundraiser for the cause, The Parent Trap: The Last of the Trilogy, will be held this Saturday at Neighbours nightclub in Seattle's Capitol Hill Neighborhood. Featuring performers past and present, including reigning Empress Olympia XXXIV Asia, former Miss Gay Seattle's Mark "Mom" Finley and Miss Nina Maxwell, and former Empresses Miss Sofonda Peters and LaTrina Bidet, Bigley hopes the event will be a star-studded cavalcade of the area's top impersonators and is positive it will be a showcase people won't want to miss. "We have outstanding performers both past a present," claims the former monarch. "I promise, people will not be bored."

Getting to this show hasn't been easy for Bigley. "It was a very scary undertaking at first, and it seemed like getting these banners completed was an incredibly distant goal. Yet, with the talents of so many of the people involved, with the generous support of the Seattle community, Peaches and I have been able to hold two fantastic shows that have been both great fun and full of surprises. The support from the community has indeed been fabulous and we are so very appreciative."

Still, with everything going on in the world right now, it's easy to wonder why this project is so vital and important. "These Banners are extremely important to us all," says Bigley. "They represent a touch of history and connect us with our past while also keeping a firm eye on our future. In fact, one of the final banners to be completed this year is for Lee Trinka and Starlet, our fourth Emperor and seventh Empress. Lee passed away this past September from Cancer, and even though he won't personally get to see the finished product he was so excited to know that his and Starlet's reign was going to be honored in such a magnificent and finally detailed way! It really made my heart soar to hear how happy he was about this."

Overall, this endeavor has made the past Emperor even happier about his continued involvement in ISCSORE and with the drag community here in Seattle. "I look forward to continuing to work with the Court of Seattle," claims Bigley. "Peaches and my goal has been to see us all; the Court, other organizations, the city of Seattle; working together as one cohesive entity instead of differing factions drifting apart. To do that, we need to support our youth and, while showing them our past, not get caught up in that past so much that it blinds us and we can't see the future."

"This Banner project has helped us do just that," says Bigley, finishing up his thoughts with a smile. "Change is good, and for ISCSORE to continue to grow we must change. The Court is a very unique group and has been for 34 years. Its diversity allows it to challenge itself at all times. It also allows it to flourish. When people come to The Parent Trap on Saturday night, that's exactly what they're going to see; a vital community organization flourishing."

The Parent Trap: The Last of the Trilogy will be held at Neighbours Nightclub at 1509 Broadway Ave Saturday Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door for $10.00 and is a benefit for The Imperial Sovereign College of Monarchs Banner Fund.

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