Our sons long ago mastered their ABCs, so I ventured solo to the Miz Diamond Wigfall drop-in drag story time event at Wellesley Free Library this week to see what all the fuss was about. Such events across the state this year have drawn both support and protesters, and this performer’s teen make-up class caused a stir in Danvers.
This Wellesley event generated lots of calls and emails to the library, including from one person who vowed to get the Library Board of Trustees unseated. This actually was the second such event held at the library, but this one got a bit more publicity ahead of time, sparking the influx of feedback.
I had plenty of company at the Wellesley reading, which drew at least 70 people of all ages, including lots of little kids, some crawling, some jumping around. I sat in the back, deferring to parents, caregivers, and kids who sat in folding chairs or on the floor surrounding Diamond and trusty sidekick Jasper, who played a mean uke.
I’ve been exposed to my fair share of drag queens lately, having just returned from a Cape Cod vacation that included a day trip to Provincetown in all its glory. Strolling along Commercial Street, we were approached by Miss Conception regarding a cartoon-themed extravaganza and Paige Turner about an ’80s throwback. We passed on those shows, but learned upon our return to Wellesley that a free drag story time performance was scheduled right here.
Clearly, this weekday morning library event didn’t have much in common with the nighttime Ptown shows.
Miz Diamond may have brought a bit more dramatic flair to reading Mo Willems’ “There’s a Bird on Your Head!” or singing “Wheels on the Bus,” but it certainly wasn’t anything over the top. Yes, we caught a few twists on traditional song lyrics “here comes the other Momma Shark…,” but Diamond pretty much stuck to the standards. The reader did share a message of self worth by reading “Be Who You Are,” and later read “Miss Rita, Mystery Reader,” about a drag queen dad appearing at a school reading event.
Kids and adults sang along, shook their sillies out, and had fun before going on with the rest of their days.
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