Inside Montreal, journalist Louis-Philippe Messier travels mostly on the run, his office in his backpack, on the lookout for fascinating subjects and people. He speaks to everyone and is interested in all walks of life in this urban chronicle.
Her features are fine, her gait feminine. Difficult, at first glance, to guess that Geneviève Labelle is indeed a drag king. She earns her living by becoming RV Metal, her male alter ego.
“It's the opposite of why we usually wear makeup, since I have to dig in and darken my dark circles under my eyes, I bring out wrinkles that I don't have yet, I break the curves of my face to make it more angular, it's oddly satisfying to intentionally make what you usually try to hide! laughs the 30-year-old actress, a graduate of the Lionel-Groulx theater school.
The actress takes two hours to put on makeup and get ready for her character.
In Chez Mado's make-up room before the Cabaret Queer evening, Ms. Labelle spends more than two hours transforming herself into her drag king character, which goes by the pretty name of RV Métal or Hervé.
< p>“Hervé is nervous, frenetic, outrageous, ruled by his penis and his cravings for drugs, and he makes people laugh with his antics”, explains the young woman in the process of sticking on a mustache. < /p> Geneviève Labelle natural.
To flatten her chest, rectangles of adhesive fabric cover her breasts, between which she affixes a hairy prosthesis.
A drag king exaggerates the typically masculine features to comedic endings, like drag queens doing the same with female paraphernalia.
“My character isn't just a little hairy: he's extremely hairy! »
When Mrs. Labelle puts a hand in her pants and places something, it intrigues me, and I ask her what she is doing. she replies.
To make herself a “package”, she simply uses a pair of socks.
“Some drag kings use realistic penis replicas as bumps in the pants, but I'm fine with my pair of stockings, it's softer! »
The actress slips into a very tight stage costume, which seems uncomfortable: apparently, you have to suffer to be beautiful.
“My girlfriend Mélodie Noël created a drag king character for herself called Rock Bière and I decided to follow in his footsteps by creating Hervé, which allows us to produce together like Ding and Dong of drag. »
Anxious to spread their art and train the next generation, the couple of actresses adopts “sons”, new talented drag kings, for whom they act as mentors.
“We do make-up jams to exchange stuff and we form like a family. »
Every two months, Rock Bière and RV Métal host a drag king « Beer and Metal » evening at Mado where new artists dress up, find a comic pseudonym and perform for the first time.< /p>
On stage during my visit, RV Metal is boosted and wiggles manly (and ridiculously) on the song You touch my tralala by Gunther. With hip thrusts, he acts as if a Barbie doll was giving him a blowjob. It's crazy and it's very funny.
“This incredible energy is something I would never have had the chance to know and play as an actress in a normal role” , she says.
RV Métal and Rock Bière will host a great show this summer during Montréal Pride. And this fall at L’Espace libre, the spouses plan to get into politics: “Mélodie will be François Legault and I will be Éric Duhaime. »
♦ Along with two of their sons, HercuSleaze and Walter Ego, Rock Bière and RV Métal will take part in the big free outdoor drag show, < em>Extravaganza, Thursday, July 28 at 9:15 p.m.
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Katrine Johns has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Gal Post, Katrine Johns worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my firstname.lastname@example.org 1-800-268-7128