Last night was the world premiere of Velvet Variety, a new streaming variety show from New York City’s queer comedy community. The 20-minute comedy compilation is a blend of stand-up clips, characters, drag, music and a DIY energy.
The first episode includes a clip featuring RuPaul’s Drag Race alum Shea Couleé and a headline set from trans stand-up comedian Jaye McBride. Check it out embedded below.
This is a personal project for me, because, when I’m not slinging pixels here, I’m a performer in New York City. As the Coronavirus continues to ravage everyday life around the world, nightlife has shuttered from coast to coast. This is particularly concerning for LGBTQ venues (many already operating with thin margins), drag artists and queer performers.
Velvet Variety hopes to create a showcase for up-and-coming as well as established LGBTQ comedy performers beyond their own social media followings, and to provide folks at home a chance to recreate that feeling of discovering a new talent in the basement of some bar.
The show prominently features each performer’s Venmo handle, so viewers can tip them directly, and their social media handles (likes and follows are free!).
Remember: Many LGBTQ venues have set up crowdfunding pages (check your local bar’s social media for links to donate!), and now is the perfect time to buy merch from your favorite performers!