Drag King History

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So far Drag King History has created 50 blog entries.

1955 – 1969 Stormé DeLarverié

2022-03-01T03:10:11+00:00

Years active
1955 – 1969

Stage Name(s)
Stormé DeLarverié

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of OriginUSA

Birth – Death
(c.)1923 – 2014

Bio

Stormé DeLarverié was a legendary male impersonator, international icon, LGBT community activist and “a self-appointed guardian of lesbians” (1) in New York City. She performed as a male impersonator serving as the Master […]

1955 – 1969 Stormé DeLarverié2022-03-01T03:10:11+00:00

1943-1989 MISORA Hibari

2022-02-25T06:28:43+00:00

Years active
1943-1989

Stage Name(s)
MISORA Hibari

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
Japan

Birth – Death
1937-1989

Bio

MISORA Hibari (美空ひばり) was a singer and actress who symbolized the post-war era of Japan. During her career spanning over 40 years, she recorded 1500 songs including 517 original songs. Her first performance acting as a boy […]

1943-1989 MISORA Hibari2022-02-25T06:28:43+00:00

1935 – 1950s Blackie Dennis

2022-02-25T06:29:28+00:00

Years active
1935 – mid-1950s

Stage Name(s)
Blackie Dennis

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
1911 – 1988

Bio

Blackie Dennis was a male impersonator from the mid-1930’s to the mid-1950’s who performed in the notorious nightclubs of New York City’s beloved bohemian neighborhood, Greenwich Village. She wore tuxedos and sharp suits […]

1935 – 1950s Blackie Dennis2022-02-25T06:29:28+00:00

1925 – 1950 Gladys Bentley

2022-06-15T20:27:59+00:00

Years active
1923 – 1952

Stage Name(s)
Gladys Bentley, Bobbie Minton, Fatso Bentley

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
1907 – 1960

Bio

Gladys Bentley was an inspiration to many as a prolific African-American, out and proud lesbian, and bawdy gender bending entertainer during the 1920’s Harlem Renaissance. She was a robust 250 pound woman with a deep, growly voice […]

1925 – 1950 Gladys Bentley2022-06-15T20:27:59+00:00

1920 – 1945 Azucena Maizani

2022-04-25T02:57:41+00:00

Azucena Maizani - Smoking a cigarette, year and source unknown.

Years active
c.1920 – 1945

Stage Name(s)
Azucena Maizani, Azabache, La Ñata Gaucha

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
Argentina

Birth – Death
1902 – 1970

Bio

Azucena Maizani was one of the leading female singers of the tango, with a career that soared to prominence during […]

1920 – 1945 Azucena Maizani2022-04-25T02:57:41+00:00

1914 – 1940 Bert Whitman

2021-07-16T20:44:35+00:00

Years active
ca. 1914 – ca. 1940

Stage Name(s)
Bert Whitman

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
ca. 1888 – 1964

Bio

Said to be “the best male impersonator of the race” and the “ebony Fred Astaire”, Bert Whitman was considered one of the best male impersonators of her day. Born around […]

1914 – 1940 Bert Whitman2021-07-16T20:44:35+00:00

1913-1930 Pip Wainfor

2022-02-25T05:47:10+00:00

Years active
1913 – 1930

Stage Name(s)
Pip Wainfor, Phil Wainfor

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
United Kingdom

Birth – Death
1899 – 1964

Bio

From 1913 to 1930, Violet Wainfor used the stage name Pip or Phil Wainfor to perform as a male impersonator in small halls and pubs in the United Kingdom and […]

1913-1930 Pip Wainfor2022-02-25T05:47:10+00:00

1909 – 1914 Aida Overton Walker

2022-02-25T05:47:55+00:00

Years active
1909 – 1914

Stage Name(s)
Aida Overton Walker

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
1880 – 1914

Bio

Aida Overton Walker was an immensely successful African-American actress, singer, dancer, choreographer, and male impersonator on the vaudeville circuit performing for black and white audiences which was rare for the time. In 1909, out of necessity, Aida became a male […]

1909 – 1914 Aida Overton Walker2022-02-25T05:47:55+00:00

1900 – 1918 Maude Adams

2022-03-23T04:08:32+00:00

Years active
1900 – 1918

Stage Name(s)
Maude Adams

Category
Male Impersonator, Breeches Role

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
1872 – 1953

Bio

Maude Adams was a celebrated American actress who was the first person to play Peter Pan on the Broadway stage in 1905. She played several male impersonator roles over her career […]

1900 – 1918 Maude Adams2022-03-23T04:08:32+00:00

1890 – 1906 Florence Hines

2020-02-25T17:08:33+00:00

Years active
1890 – 1906

Stage Name(s)
Florence Hines

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
unknown – 1924

Bio

Despite the dearth of personal biographical details, there is enough ample evidence to show that African American Florence Hines had a flourishing career as a male impersonator on the vaudeville stage beginning circa 1890 with Sam T. Jack’s production, The Creole […]

1890 – 1906 Florence Hines2020-02-25T17:08:33+00:00

1889 – 1910 Gowongo Mohawk

2020-08-19T03:47:42+00:00

Years active
1889 – 1910

Stage Name(s)
Gowongo Mohawk, Go-Won-Go

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
1860 – 1924

Bio
Gowongo Mohawk (August 11, 1860 – February 7, 1924) was one of the first American Indian actors to perform on the American stage and the first known American Indian male impersonator. She wrote, […]

1889 – 1910 Gowongo Mohawk2020-08-19T03:47:42+00:00

1870-1908 Ella Wesner

2020-02-25T01:23:51+00:00

Years active
1870-1908

Stage Name(s)
Ella Wesner

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
USA

Birth – Death
1841 – 1917

Bio
Ella Wesner was from a family of ballet dancers and began her career in children’s ballet corps in Philadelphia (1).  Before she was thirty, and prior to her career as a male impersonator, she was […]

1870-1908 Ella Wesner2020-02-25T01:23:51+00:00

1864 – 1875 Eugenie Fiocre

2020-02-25T01:26:01+00:00

Years active
1864 – 1975

Stage Name(s)
Eugenie Fiocre

Category
En Travasti

Country of Origin
France

Birth – Death
1845 – 1908

Bio

Eugenie Fiocre was a principal ballet dancer in the Paris Opera. She was known for her beauty, grace and talent. She often took on male roles called en travesti due to the shortage […]

1864 – 1875 Eugenie Fiocre2020-02-25T01:26:01+00:00

1864 – 1904 Annie Hindle

2020-02-25T01:26:51+00:00

Years active
1864-1904

Stage Name(s)
Annie Hindle

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
United Kingdom

Birth – Death
1847- ca. 1904

Bio
Annie Hindle was the first male impersonator to appear on variety stages in the US.  She came to the US in 1868 arriving from England where she had gained performance experience at the English […]

1864 – 1904 Annie Hindle2020-02-25T01:26:51+00:00

1862-1901 Bessie Bonehill

2020-02-25T01:28:08+00:00

Years active
1862-1901

Stage Name(s)
Bessie Bonehill

Category
Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
United Kingdom

Birth – Death
1855 – 1902

Bio
Bessie Bonehill claimed to be the first male impersonator in the English music halls and ‘is one of the first male impersonators who ventured into America variety’ (1). In 1889 she was invited by […]

1862-1901 Bessie Bonehill2020-02-25T01:28:08+00:00

1825 – 1859 Mary Anne Keeley

2020-02-25T01:29:56+00:00

Years active
1825 – 1859

Stage Name(s)
Mary Anne Keeley

Category
Breeches role, Male Impersonator

Country of Origin
United Kingdom

Birth – Death
1805 – 1899

Bio

Mary Anne Keeley, well respected British actress, was best known for her portrayal of Jack Sheppard, London’s notorious short-lived thief and jail breaker who died in 1724 at the […]

1825 – 1859 Mary Anne Keeley2020-02-25T01:29:56+00:00

1815 – 1854 Madame Vestris

2020-02-25T01:30:39+00:00

Years active
1815 – 1854

Stage Name(s)
Madame Vestris

Category
Breeches role, En travesti

Country of Origin
United Kingdom

Birth – Death
1797 – 1856

Bio

In 1815, Madame Vestris began her stage career in the Italian opera II ratto di Proserpina by Peter Winter at the King’s Theatre. In 1820, she played her first breeches […]

1815 – 1854 Madame Vestris2020-02-25T01:30:39+00:00

1791-1795 Euphrosyne Löf

2020-09-21T23:08:25+00:00

Years active
1791-1795

Stage Name // Legal/Birth Name
Euphrosyne Löf

Category
Breeches Roles

Country of Origin
Sweden

Day Birth – Day Death
1772-1828

Bio
In 1791, Euphrosyne Löf made her successful stage debut at The Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm, Sweden. Euphrosyne was among one of the first well-known Swedish actresses to play a breeches role. […]

1791-1795 Euphrosyne Löf2020-09-21T23:08:25+00:00

1790 – 1800 Lisette Stenberg

2020-09-21T23:46:03+00:00

Years active
1790 – 1800

Stage Name(s)
Lisette Stenberg

Category
Breeches Role

Country of Origin
Sweden

Birth – Death
1770 – 1847

Bio
Lisette Stenberg was a Swedish opera singer, stage actress and pianist. In 1790, she took on a breeches role as Marquis Razilli in Bertin d’Antilly’s play L’Anglais à Paris to great acclaim. Lisette […]

1790 – 1800 Lisette Stenberg2020-09-21T23:46:03+00:00
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