MINX, They/Them . “Always inspired by Queen B. Making Portland feel like home as a biracial, gender fluid queer person has been a challenge. But every day I wake up and live my fantasy and you can’t tell me anything about it.” . @minx_coat
MINX, They/Them . “Always inspired by Queen B. Making Portland feel like home as a biracial, gender fluid queer person has been a challenge. But every day I wake up and live my fantasy and you can’t tell me anything about it.” . @minx_coat
Cinnamon, They/Them. . Cinnamon is a Burlesque Performer and Performance Artist in Maine. Check out more of their work @cinnamonmaxxine ! Edited · 85w
Cinnamon, They/Them. . Cinnamon is a Burlesque Performer and Performance Artist in Maine. Check out more of their work @cinnamonmaxxine ! Edited · 85w
Lex, He/They & Alana, They/Them. . “In a time of so much death, we’ve found joy in growing new life. Urban gardens are beautiful and resilient. So are you.” . @alanabea @flexjackson
Lex, He/They & Alana, They/Them. . “In a time of so much death, we’ve found joy in growing new life. Urban gardens are beautiful and resilient. So are you.” . @alanabea @flexjackson
Gwen, She/Her.  Gwen is a burlesque performer who teaches classes and preforms across Maine.  To learn more about her classes and shows, check out @kinky_slippers !
Gwen, She/Her. Gwen is a burlesque performer who teaches classes and preforms across Maine. To learn more about her classes and shows, check out @kinky_slippers !
Sosanya, She/Her. . “"Hi! So I took a wicked long time to think of something to write about myself….self. self. Self! That's it! Talk about the self! Specifically, the journey to self love.  To anyone reading this, I understand how absolutely downright challenging it is to deeply love yourself. You are not alone! And to those who have reached that steady and long-term point where you have loved yourself, I super admire you. Kudos to you! That mental and emotional work must have been chock full of so very many ups and downs and intense internal battles. And so, no matter where you are in your personal self-love journey, I hope you not only get there as painlessly as possible and live as authentically as possible, but also more importantly, I hope you enjoy that adventure that is your own beautiful life.   Good luck in your journey to love yourself!" . @sosanyap @biagarafalls @animetedya
Sosanya, She/Her. . “"Hi! So I took a wicked long time to think of something to write about myself….self. self. Self! That's it! Talk about the self! Specifically, the journey to self love. To anyone reading this, I understand how absolutely downright challenging it is to deeply love yourself. You are not alone! And to those who have reached that steady and long-term point where you have loved yourself, I super admire you. Kudos to you! That mental and emotional work must have been chock full of so very many ups and downs and intense internal battles. And so, no matter where you are in your personal self-love journey, I hope you not only get there as painlessly as possible and live as authentically as possible, but also more importantly, I hope you enjoy that adventure that is your own beautiful life. Good luck in your journey to love yourself!" . @sosanyap @biagarafalls @animetedya
Benn, He/Him. . “Becoming your fully realized Queer self is a journey. You will try things and make mistakes. People who are heteronormative have so many guides along the way, that we as queer people don’t. Embrace the openness that comes with being part of a unique, diverse, and vibrant community.” @bennmay
Benn, He/Him. . “Becoming your fully realized Queer self is a journey. You will try things and make mistakes. People who are heteronormative have so many guides along the way, that we as queer people don’t. Embrace the openness that comes with being part of a unique, diverse, and vibrant community.” @bennmay
Matthew, He/Him. . “‘Dreams don’t die, so keep an eye on your dream’...ok, so I couldn’t have picked a cheesier Sondheim lyric to quote. But hear me out - a lot of today leaves much to be desired. I’ve tried to have a positive outlook through all of this, and passing that on to my private students and music performing colleagues. Recently, this has proved to be difficult with a job in the performing arts industry. However, I keep reminding myself of these words, and remember that even though the music has died for a bit, it will bounce back twice as strong. Looking forward to opportunity in 2021 🎉” . Matthew teaches private piano and voice lessons. To learn more / contact him, check out matthewscalaofficial.com !
Matthew, He/Him. . “‘Dreams don’t die, so keep an eye on your dream’...ok, so I couldn’t have picked a cheesier Sondheim lyric to quote. But hear me out - a lot of today leaves much to be desired. I’ve tried to have a positive outlook through all of this, and passing that on to my private students and music performing colleagues. Recently, this has proved to be difficult with a job in the performing arts industry. However, I keep reminding myself of these words, and remember that even though the music has died for a bit, it will bounce back twice as strong. Looking forward to opportunity in 2021 🎉” . Matthew teaches private piano and voice lessons. To learn more / contact him, check out matthewscalaofficial.com !
Elliot, He/Him. . Elliot is a burlesque performer, choreographer, and photographer based in Portland. . Check out his burlesque here @captain_eli_burlesque
Elliot, He/Him. . Elliot is a burlesque performer, choreographer, and photographer based in Portland. . Check out his burlesque here @captain_eli_burlesque
Megan, They/Them. . “I miss working. Weird, right? But when you work in theatre sometimes you take for granted how amazing your job is. So...I just have to adapt! Adaptation. Just another thing you get accustomed to in this weird, weird time.” . @mtripz9
Megan, They/Them. . “I miss working. Weird, right? But when you work in theatre sometimes you take for granted how amazing your job is. So...I just have to adapt! Adaptation. Just another thing you get accustomed to in this weird, weird time.” . @mtripz9
Jake, He/Him, or Chartreuse in Drag, She/Her. . “I always feel like I’m not good enough, like I’m an imposter. I doubt my abilities and dumb myself down, I bite my tongue and nod my head. But no more. In the midst of taking care of my aging parents, one with cancer and one stroke survivor with short term memory loss, I’ve found a strength I didn’t know I had. Life is too short to question our validity - WE ARE VALID. I am valid. My feelings are valid. THE COLOR OF MY SKIN IS VALID.  I’m done staying quiet when I feel that my validity has been diminished by white people. Im done being isolated by my friends for being intimidating or on edge - I AM ON EDGE. I’m constantly waiting to be disappointed by my white “ally” friends and it’s exhausting. I’m so tired. I’m tired of performative activism, I’m tired of trending activism, I’m tired of being told to calm down, I’m tired of being attacked for challenging your local faves to do more, I’m tired of watching another local white person fave receive praise for their hard work on publicly addressing and dismantling their own racism when in fact their words were written by a Black person for damage control.  I’m tired of waking up every day and seeing people I know out and about pretending this pandemic doesn’t exist, and I’m tired of wondering if any of my friends will be responsible for the death of my parents due to COVID-19 because of their selfish desire to not wear a mask. I’M TIRED PORTLAND. But I’m here, and I’ll keep fighting.  #BLACKTRANSLIVESMATTER #BLACKLIVESMATTER “ . @thecharmoney @jake_boyce_
Jake, He/Him, or Chartreuse in Drag, She/Her. . “I always feel like I’m not good enough, like I’m an imposter. I doubt my abilities and dumb myself down, I bite my tongue and nod my head. But no more. In the midst of taking care of my aging parents, one with cancer and one stroke survivor with short term memory loss, I’ve found a strength I didn’t know I had. Life is too short to question our validity - WE ARE VALID. I am valid. My feelings are valid. THE COLOR OF MY SKIN IS VALID. I’m done staying quiet when I feel that my validity has been diminished by white people. Im done being isolated by my friends for being intimidating or on edge - I AM ON EDGE. I’m constantly waiting to be disappointed by my white “ally” friends and it’s exhausting. I’m so tired. I’m tired of performative activism, I’m tired of trending activism, I’m tired of being told to calm down, I’m tired of being attacked for challenging your local faves to do more, I’m tired of watching another local white person fave receive praise for their hard work on publicly addressing and dismantling their own racism when in fact their words were written by a Black person for damage control. I’m tired of waking up every day and seeing people I know out and about pretending this pandemic doesn’t exist, and I’m tired of wondering if any of my friends will be responsible for the death of my parents due to COVID-19 because of their selfish desire to not wear a mask. I’M TIRED PORTLAND. But I’m here, and I’ll keep fighting. #BLACKTRANSLIVESMATTER #BLACKLIVESMATTER “ . @thecharmoney @jake_boyce_
Taryn/Buttah, She/Her. . “Natural performer. Burlesque dancer. Alto with an attitude. Resilient woman. Talker. Whiskey drinker. Poetry writer. Fact-checker. Political over-analyst. Your favorite bartender. Body love crusader. Anxiety wrangler. Plus sized model. Social media maven. Sex-positive stigma breaker. Queer. Passionate protestor, organizer, person trying to better her community. Lover. Reader of biographies. Content creator. Statement maker. Cannabis enthusiast. Hype man. Equality seeker. Justice demander. Cuddler. Crier. Cat mom. Cutie. Empowerment empress.  About to make it big. ✨” . @whatsuptaryn @buttahburlesque
Taryn/Buttah, She/Her. . “Natural performer. Burlesque dancer. Alto with an attitude. Resilient woman. Talker. Whiskey drinker. Poetry writer. Fact-checker. Political over-analyst. Your favorite bartender. Body love crusader. Anxiety wrangler. Plus sized model. Social media maven. Sex-positive stigma breaker. Queer. Passionate protestor, organizer, person trying to better her community. Lover. Reader of biographies. Content creator. Statement maker. Cannabis enthusiast. Hype man. Equality seeker. Justice demander. Cuddler. Crier. Cat mom. Cutie. Empowerment empress. About to make it big. ✨” . @whatsuptaryn @buttahburlesque
Bee, They/Them. . “artist/activist/attorney and recently retired politician. 1/2 of BeeTree (video for our first single, “ghouls,” at https://youtu.be/v0gBEKB_r5g and song available on Spotify/iTunes). volunteer organizer with @peoplefirstptld. emerging watercolor portrait artist, available for commissions. solo legal practitioner working on criminal defense, family law, and public accommodations discrimination.  i’m trying to be gentle about creating a path through all this chaos and isolation, but i’d honestly much rather be in a kiddie pool full of glitter at a MESH show.” . @bumbl3beekay
Bee, They/Them. . “artist/activist/attorney and recently retired politician. 1/2 of BeeTree (video for our first single, “ghouls,” at https://youtu.be/v0gBEKB_r5g and song available on Spotify/iTunes). volunteer organizer with @peoplefirstptld. emerging watercolor portrait artist, available for commissions. solo legal practitioner working on criminal defense, family law, and public accommodations discrimination. i’m trying to be gentle about creating a path through all this chaos and isolation, but i’d honestly much rather be in a kiddie pool full of glitter at a MESH show.” . @bumbl3beekay
VIVA she/her . “All I know for certain is that I have this moment, however long it lasts, and I have my values. After that, the rest comes naturally.” . @seevivasing
VIVA she/her . “All I know for certain is that I have this moment, however long it lasts, and I have my values. After that, the rest comes naturally.” . @seevivasing
Lana, She/Her. . Drummer in @caveboymusic Graphics/posters @heyposterlady Co-being to Django @misterbabyboi_xoxo  Born and raised in Montreal, Canada.  Can be seen wearing backwards hats, drinking coffee/eating ice cream on stoops, rollerblading, building IKEA furniture, and delivering (your) groceries.  New(ish) in town and only just beginning to discover the vibrant queer community here in Portland. Thanks for welcoming me with open arms!” . @lanadelcoonster
Lana, She/Her. . Drummer in @caveboymusic Graphics/posters @heyposterlady Co-being to Django @misterbabyboi_xoxo Born and raised in Montreal, Canada. Can be seen wearing backwards hats, drinking coffee/eating ice cream on stoops, rollerblading, building IKEA furniture, and delivering (your) groceries. New(ish) in town and only just beginning to discover the vibrant queer community here in Portland. Thanks for welcoming me with open arms!” . @lanadelcoonster
Brian Thuotte, He/Him & Elliot Roy, He/Him  Elliot - “We both grew up in the area and have lived here most our lives. We now live in Hollis with our 4 dogs. Over the years we've volunteered with Pride and EQ Maine. I habe also preformed on stage as his alter ego, Alexis Von Vandertramp. Brian worked most of the quarantine, and I just became a really good house husband. I also worked on my sewing and baking skills! Mostly got through it by staying busy with projects.” . @elliot680 @alexisvonv
Brian Thuotte, He/Him & Elliot Roy, He/Him Elliot - “We both grew up in the area and have lived here most our lives. We now live in Hollis with our 4 dogs. Over the years we've volunteered with Pride and EQ Maine. I habe also preformed on stage as his alter ego, Alexis Von Vandertramp. Brian worked most of the quarantine, and I just became a really good house husband. I also worked on my sewing and baking skills! Mostly got through it by staying busy with projects.” . @elliot680 @alexisvonv
Ricky, They/Them.  Ricky is a thespian at the local Theaters of Portland and South Portland. Life without Theater has been challenging for them, but they find solice in other creative outlets: piano, singing, dance. Since COVID, they have started voice acting and hope to continue acting in a plethora of different ways!
Ricky, They/Them. Ricky is a thespian at the local Theaters of Portland and South Portland. Life without Theater has been challenging for them, but they find solice in other creative outlets: piano, singing, dance. Since COVID, they have started voice acting and hope to continue acting in a plethora of different ways!
Celeste, She/Her • “No amount of applause or attention is going to make you feel the validation you’re seeking from within yourself.” • @celsty
Celeste, She/Her • “No amount of applause or attention is going to make you feel the validation you’re seeking from within yourself.” • @celsty
Amanda, She/Her. . "Before the pandemic, I had just been getting into burlesque and stand up. I really miss the feeling of being on stage, of getting to hear people laugh and cheer and know that I made someone's night better. I find being creative, writing material or coming up with numbers, helps me process the difficult events in my life as well as helps me push through the present. Right now, it's been a real uphill struggle though   I live alone so at times the past nine months have been very challenging. And I'm still trying to do the things I love, even if it looks a bit different than I was expecting it or sometimes it takes me longer because everything tires me out faster than usual. I've been writing a lot more and hope to get a few projects off the ground next year.   I want anyone struggling right now to know, especially my fellow queers with mental illness: You aren't alone. I can't promise things will get better any time soon, but I can promise you a lot of people are glad you're still here and care about you. And its ok that you need to rest more than you were before or aren't writing the next, great American novel. Take care of yourselves as best you can." . You can keep track of what Amanda is up to on Mainelymandy.com or on Instagram @mainelymandy
Amanda, She/Her. . "Before the pandemic, I had just been getting into burlesque and stand up. I really miss the feeling of being on stage, of getting to hear people laugh and cheer and know that I made someone's night better. I find being creative, writing material or coming up with numbers, helps me process the difficult events in my life as well as helps me push through the present. Right now, it's been a real uphill struggle though I live alone so at times the past nine months have been very challenging. And I'm still trying to do the things I love, even if it looks a bit different than I was expecting it or sometimes it takes me longer because everything tires me out faster than usual. I've been writing a lot more and hope to get a few projects off the ground next year. I want anyone struggling right now to know, especially my fellow queers with mental illness: You aren't alone. I can't promise things will get better any time soon, but I can promise you a lot of people are glad you're still here and care about you. And its ok that you need to rest more than you were before or aren't writing the next, great American novel. Take care of yourselves as best you can." . You can keep track of what Amanda is up to on Mainelymandy.com or on Instagram @mainelymandy
Angel, She/He. . “‘Love yourself, express yourself. Be you, do you. This world needs more love.’  I'm a small town queen with big dreams and the world is my runway.” . @a_n_g_e_lm_a_r_i_e
Angel, She/He. . “‘Love yourself, express yourself. Be you, do you. This world needs more love.’ I'm a small town queen with big dreams and the world is my runway.” . @a_n_g_e_lm_a_r_i_e
Ian, They/Them . “Queer is the best word to describe me, there are other more specific terms, of course, but queer encapsulates my heart more than anything else I've encountered." . @dekalldarkestarr
Ian, They/Them . “Queer is the best word to describe me, there are other more specific terms, of course, but queer encapsulates my heart more than anything else I've encountered." . @dekalldarkestarr
Dax, He/Him . “I’m a social worker, I’m in recovery, I’m biracial, I’m gay, I make techno music, I’m a Pisces and my saving grace is Leo moon.  I moved to Portland from boston about five years ago, to start over. My life was out of control, and I was finally ready to try something new. I’m very grateful for all of the wonderful people I’ve met here who’ve helped me along my way.  Cancel culture is something that I have come to understand as poisonous. Having difficult, awkward, messy, in other words “honest” conversations is the only way out. When we can sit with one another and not leave till the conclusion. If love is not the conclusion, the work is not done.” . @discodungeon
Dax, He/Him . “I’m a social worker, I’m in recovery, I’m biracial, I’m gay, I make techno music, I’m a Pisces and my saving grace is Leo moon. I moved to Portland from boston about five years ago, to start over. My life was out of control, and I was finally ready to try something new. I’m very grateful for all of the wonderful people I’ve met here who’ve helped me along my way. Cancel culture is something that I have come to understand as poisonous. Having difficult, awkward, messy, in other words “honest” conversations is the only way out. When we can sit with one another and not leave till the conclusion. If love is not the conclusion, the work is not done.” . @discodungeon
Michael Donovan, He/Him . “I’ve lived in South Portland for the last 20 years and I have been fortunate enough to be a part of an amazing theater community, with theaters within a few streets of each other. South Portland is home to two venerable community theaters, Lyric Music Theater and The Portland Players. Community theater has given me many opportunities and I am thankful. But like all theaters, and the arts in general, the pandemic has hit hard. With my home theater, The Portland Players, it has been sixteen plus months of no income. But hopefully, all local arts organizations will be able to keep going and continue to bring art, theater, music and dance to our wonderful city. Please, donate to your favorite local creative groups and keep the community rich with the arts!!” . @michaeldonovan1973
Michael Donovan, He/Him . “I’ve lived in South Portland for the last 20 years and I have been fortunate enough to be a part of an amazing theater community, with theaters within a few streets of each other. South Portland is home to two venerable community theaters, Lyric Music Theater and The Portland Players. Community theater has given me many opportunities and I am thankful. But like all theaters, and the arts in general, the pandemic has hit hard. With my home theater, The Portland Players, it has been sixteen plus months of no income. But hopefully, all local arts organizations will be able to keep going and continue to bring art, theater, music and dance to our wonderful city. Please, donate to your favorite local creative groups and keep the community rich with the arts!!” . @michaeldonovan1973
Joey, She/They . “Life sucks a lot of the time for me, but hey it’s gonna look great in my autobiography one day.” . @famished_supermodel
Joey, She/They . “Life sucks a lot of the time for me, but hey it’s gonna look great in my autobiography one day.” . @famished_supermodel
Lindsey, She/Her is a burlesque performer and performance artist. She moved to Maine in 2016 after traveling around Asia, Europe & living in New Orleans. . “I finally feel at home in Portland. After years of struggling with my identity. I feel that I’m finally surrounded by a loving supporting community who give me the strength and courage to be myself & explore who I am.” . @mystiqueburlesque Edited · 21w
Lindsey, She/Her is a burlesque performer and performance artist. She moved to Maine in 2016 after traveling around Asia, Europe & living in New Orleans. . “I finally feel at home in Portland. After years of struggling with my identity. I feel that I’m finally surrounded by a loving supporting community who give me the strength and courage to be myself & explore who I am.” . @mystiqueburlesque Edited · 21w
Patrick, He/Him . “Quarantine finally made me take a second to see the person staring back at me in the mirror was a broken one. I was taught at a young age to keep a happy face on but having nothing but time makes a person reflect and see what can truly be changed if one wants to. Once I did that I realized that doors could be open and my dreams could be obtained. I’m now finally getting to live out the dreams 10 year old Patrick wanted for himself. I wanted to be a teacher, a chef, and an actor. I get to teach high school age kids about culinary and am a drag Queen under the name Ophelia Johnson. I have a loving husband and tons of cats, and with all these joys self doubt can still sneak in. It’s an everyday battle but I’m here for the fight.” . @ophelia_drag
Patrick, He/Him . “Quarantine finally made me take a second to see the person staring back at me in the mirror was a broken one. I was taught at a young age to keep a happy face on but having nothing but time makes a person reflect and see what can truly be changed if one wants to. Once I did that I realized that doors could be open and my dreams could be obtained. I’m now finally getting to live out the dreams 10 year old Patrick wanted for himself. I wanted to be a teacher, a chef, and an actor. I get to teach high school age kids about culinary and am a drag Queen under the name Ophelia Johnson. I have a loving husband and tons of cats, and with all these joys self doubt can still sneak in. It’s an everyday battle but I’m here for the fight.” . @ophelia_drag
Kyle, He/Him . "Coming to Maine was the best thing that could have happened to me. It was first place that I was always queer; that no one had known me as closeted. So for the first time I got to be my authentic self from day one. I carry that with me everywhere. As a leader, I am loudly queer so that everyone can see the spaces I create are safe for all. As an artist, my identity helps me tell my stories authentically. My hope is that my work paves the way so that the next generation of artists and leaders have the framework to support everyone and build up from there." . @kyle.aarons
Kyle, He/Him . "Coming to Maine was the best thing that could have happened to me. It was first place that I was always queer; that no one had known me as closeted. So for the first time I got to be my authentic self from day one. I carry that with me everywhere. As a leader, I am loudly queer so that everyone can see the spaces I create are safe for all. As an artist, my identity helps me tell my stories authentically. My hope is that my work paves the way so that the next generation of artists and leaders have the framework to support everyone and build up from there." . @kyle.aarons
Thomas Smallwood, He/They. . “I have lived in Portland for almost 20 years and am blessed to be part of such a big beautiful community. My time here in Portland has gifted my the opportunity to wear many hats: nanny, bartender, performer, restaurant manager and drag queen. I’d say it’s the hat of friendship that’s the biggest blessing!” . @tjerome77
Thomas Smallwood, He/They. . “I have lived in Portland for almost 20 years and am blessed to be part of such a big beautiful community. My time here in Portland has gifted my the opportunity to wear many hats: nanny, bartender, performer, restaurant manager and drag queen. I’d say it’s the hat of friendship that’s the biggest blessing!” . @tjerome77
AP, She/They . “I’m AP (she/they) and I work as a multi-dimensional artist native to Arizona and now in Maine. I love supporting other artists and am reaching to build a brand that strives for empathy and reminds us what it means to be a real human. You only have one life and I’m seeking to break the traditions and societal expectations that aren’t serving our best interests. I hope when people look at the work I do they ask themselves and others “what can I do to be more empathetic?” And “what in my life isn’t serving my deepest, truest desires?” I believe people will find that they have more in common with people of opposing views to them than they previously realized. Art can do many things and there are many ways to make art. Hopefully we all find what we really want in our lives, despite pushback, and let nothing stop us in achieving it.” . @apnurir
AP, She/They . “I’m AP (she/they) and I work as a multi-dimensional artist native to Arizona and now in Maine. I love supporting other artists and am reaching to build a brand that strives for empathy and reminds us what it means to be a real human. You only have one life and I’m seeking to break the traditions and societal expectations that aren’t serving our best interests. I hope when people look at the work I do they ask themselves and others “what can I do to be more empathetic?” And “what in my life isn’t serving my deepest, truest desires?” I believe people will find that they have more in common with people of opposing views to them than they previously realized. Art can do many things and there are many ways to make art. Hopefully we all find what we really want in our lives, despite pushback, and let nothing stop us in achieving it.” . @apnurir
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