KAILUA-KONA — One of America’s best-known drag queens, Delighted Tobehere, performs tonight in Kainaliu.
The performer was featured on season 10 of America’s Got Talent and has performed at a number of venues such as Backstreet Atlanta. Come 7 p.m. today, Delighted can add Aloha Theatre to the list.
The artist combines celebrity vocal impressions, lip syncing, comedy and wit to entice audiences.
“Delighted was here in Hawaii last year on vacation and we hosted her at My Bar,” said Kona Pride co-founder Rocco Vick. “She is an amazing talent. Delighted is a comedian, a live singer and is such a big personality. We decided that if we were going to have her back, we would need a bigger venue to feature her. We invited her back to do a fundraiser with us at the theater, and we are very excited to see Delighted on a bigger stage.”
The event is hosted by Kona Pride, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting visibility in West Hawaii for the LGBTQ community.
“It is going to be a lot of fun, involving audience participation, and I am one to get off the stage and continue my act,” Delighted said. “For those who are drag-curious, I consider myself one of the best drag queens to see for the first time. … I am here for us all to have a good time and for all of us to feel safe. I have the same mindset as the community I am visiting. It is welcoming and beautiful, and I hope to bring that to the Aloha Theatre. Come out for a laugh and a baritone drag queen.”
The show, “Simply Delighted,” is a benefit and fundraiser for the upcoming pride festival.
In her performances, Delighted performs with a specific form of drag, known as cabaret drag.
“Cabaret drag is unique in the sense that you are the show,” said Delighted. “You are not sharing the stage in a way that you would if you were in a traditional drag show with a cast. … You are the host, the performer, the comedian, the messenger and you are the audience interaction. You are everything for that 90 minutes.”
Despite only performing on island twice, Delighted has developed a place in her heart for Kona as well as Kona Pride.
“I fell in love with the idea of pride everywhere,” Delighted said. “I am so excited that even in smaller towns, you are seeing more pride festivals occurring and that they are happening year-round. So often, we only see pride in June, and I feel as if people that are against the LGBTQ community suffer through June and at the end of the month say, ‘July 1st, yay! We are done! We can hang up the rainbow and can go without seeing that.’
“But the thing is, our fight for equality is not over. … Having pride festivals in both large and small cities year-round is so critical right now. I am really excited to help Kona Pride grow.”
The show, “Simply Delighted,” is a one-night-only show. It will take place from 7-9 p.m. tonight at Aloha Theatre. Tickets are available at www.konapride.com, or can also be purchased at the door. All tickets are $30.