SA queers have got talent! The Gay Flag of South Africa and Budget Car Hire SA are delighted by the entrants for the competitions to win a seat on the all-gay coach tour across South Africa.
They’ve shown that they have what it takes to put on a show that will blast audiences away, make a difference to communities with their visit or design the most fag-u-lous coach ever!
Watch a video clip of last year’s tour below.
Now it’s your turn to tell us who you think should go on this trip of a lifetime by voting for your favourite entertainer and coach design.
ROCK THE COACH FINALISTS:
WE NEED YOU! Yes, you! Let the Gay Flag of SA team know who you think is “fierce and fabulous”! Channel your RuPaul alter ego, get into gear and vote for who you believe should join this drag race… Public voting counts for 50%; with the remaining 50% made up by the judges, comprising of celebrities such as Soli Philander, The Soap Girls and Melanie Lowe, along with the Gay Flagboys, and tour managers Lola Fine and Genevieve Le Coq.
Vote for your top four acts to take their seats on the Gay Flag SA / Budget coach as entertainers.
ENTRY #1: MANILA VON TEEZ
About me: I am the 22 year old Manila Von Teez. I only started women impersonation roughly 1.5 years ago. I have been called the Nikki Minaj of Cape Town. I am a fashion designer by day and have my own label called Haus of Vjorn. I have had my own show at Bubbles and currently perform at Club Fever every Thursday Evening. I was crowned First Princess at Miss Gay Western Cape 2011.
I would like to go on the tour because: I thoroughly enjoy performing and this would be a great opportunity for me to showcase my talent nationally. I also have strong beliefs in the upliftment of the rights and status of women impersonators as I believe the artform should be recognised on a larger scale. This in turn advocates my beliefs that ALL people should be treated as equals!
Describe your act: I lip-synch to current and well-known songs. Being a designer, I thoroughly enjoy creating garments that suit my performances and enhance the wow factor.
ENTRY #2: IVO LEO
About me: I am 25 yo, outgoing, fun loving with a love for the arts and people. I am an operations coordinator turned model turned go-go dancer turned stripper turned singer and then, after living la vida a la Moulin Rouge, a light appeared from the heavens and Kylie said to me “You can do better!”
I would like to go on the tour because: It’s a trip of a life time. The equal rights issue that everyone faces no matter race, colour, age or gender is a common factor which we can use to build bridges and help each other to relate. The tour is about bringing people together in celebration of our “different togetherness”. I certainly want to have lots of fun, explore the country and its various communities and bring some sunshine into the lives of others, especially those less fortunate. I certainly hope to inspire people with my music and spread some love. It feels like we could do anything, we’ll be freakin amazing 🙂 SO LETS ROCK THIS BUS TOGETHER!!!
Describe your act: I am a true Show Angel, sugar and spice, on and off stage. I love singing and deliver a variety of songs in big angel costumes. I find inspiration in artists like Kylie, Nicole Scherzinger, Pink, Juliet Simms, Xtina and Adele. As “wow” is the reaction I aim for I never grow tired of coming up with new routines for rock anthems, hot burlesque pole/lap dance songs, teary eyed blues or sexy pop club rock numbers. This Leo wants feathers, glitter and leather. JUST GIVE ME A BIGGER STAGE AND WATCH ME DAZZLE IN THE SPOT LIGHT!
ENTRY #3: ADONIS
About me: I am originally a ballroom dancer but seeing my friend, Thapelo Gaaitsiwe, struggle to form a group, I decided to take it upon myself to start The BJs with him and have met challenges ever since. I’ve been a Junior Latin SA Champion for 3 consecutive years and had to leave the competitive side of ballroom this year as my dance partner is doing her Matric. For now I’m working to develop myself and The BJs into a force to be reckoned with, putting them through ballet and gymnastics. I am a choreographer, dancer, singer, songwriter and poet and would love to study Theatrical Arts at Rhodes university after my gap year.
I would like to go on the tour because: Not only is it an opportunity for me to go to my first Pride, but it is also an opportunity to raise the name of The BJs. We are finding it hard to breakthrough in the industry, mostly because we live in a small town with little to no events. Also, being involved in activism, this is an opportunity to learn different ways on how to do it. This could offer me the opportunity to network with important people who may have never given me the chance without this platform. I am doing this for me but mostly I am doing this for The BJs and my community.
Describe your act: It is mostly voguing and whacking, but I also perform burlesque routines and pop. I perform pieces like Run The World (Girls) up to Sweet Transvestite. Always different and something for everyone, from fierce to sexy.
ENTRY #4: ODIDIVA
About me: ODIDIVA is an accomplished performing artist, an entertaining explosion wrapped in the talents of a singer, songwriter, poet, actor, dancer, M.C. and drag persona. Presented by Odidi Mfenyana, ODIDIVA has performed nationally and locally and in over 15 international cities in Europe, Africa and Australia. Highlights include:
â€¢ The VIENNA LIFE BALL 2005
â€¢ The FACE OF AFRICA Finale 2008
â€¢ DESIGN INDABA Banquet 2003 & 2011
â€¢ WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM 2010 Davos, Switzerland
â€¢ COMMONWEALTH GAMES 2006 in Melbourne.
I would like to go on the tour because: I believe this tour is important. I was at the Gay Flag’s protest on June 19th in Cape Town and I believe Gay Rights = Human Rights. This tour is a way to get people to understand this.
ENTRY #5: CHARL ZERO
About me: Charl Zero is currently a DJ in Cape Town, South Africa where he plays a variety of music and specialises in commercial and progressive house at various clubs and events, especially in the gay community. His website is charlzero.co.za and his YouTube channel is here.
I would like to go on the tour because: I’m sure I can inject even more fun into the already fun event. I will bring all my music and be as entertaining a participant as can be.
WRAP THE COACH FINALISTS:
It is now up to you to “PIMP OUR RIDE!” Choose which one of the following three designs should clad our coach as we travel the country! Remember, we are looking for a design that will stop traffic as we travel the N1 and scream that we are gay, African and proud of it. The lucky winner will win R5000 cash, a seat on the bus and flights to and from Cape Town, if they should reside outside the Mother City. Public votes will count for 25% of the overall score.
ENTRY # 1: JUNIE SIHLANGU
About me: I am a young black lesbian female living in the South of Johannesburg. I have a Diploma in Graphic Design and Web Development. I am a kind hearted person with only the best wishes for everyone. My biggest desire is to make a lasting change in people’s minds and hearts. To help educate people about our diverse community. It is extremely challenging especially for the black community because of culture and tradition. A lot of work needs to be done and I plan on playing my part.
I would like to go on the tour because: I believe this is an opportunity that doesn’t come too often. The idea of travelling with a group of exciting people appeals to me. But what I would like the most is an opportunity to make a difference for our community. To be a voice and speak for those who can’t. As a black lesbian I personally know our struggles and would love and be honoured to take part in this initiative. I’ve always wanted to be a more active member when it comes to advocacy and attending the march to Luthuli House this year made me proud for not sitting back and letting others fight for our rights whereas I could contribute. So being on this tour is an opportunity that offers to open so many avenues for me. Going on this tour will help me get involved in spreading a much needed message to our fellow South Africans and the world. Plus, who wouldn’t want to go on a free tour, with awesome people and a chance to meet a whole lot of different people and have massive fun!
About me: I am a ‘drag queen’ who has been involved with the LGBTI community for more than 5 years. I have been a stage performer, socialite and titleholder for gay clubs and have been an active participant of gay beauty pageants. I have recently become an activist in light of the blatant homophobia and ineptness of SA’s political and traditional leaders as well as the gruesome and senseless murders of members of our community. Our community would know me to be very vocal on LGBTI issues on social media networks and on the internet. My aims are to establish a national LGBTI advocacy and awareness network organisation to remove stigma, to provide education and to empower young LGBTI South Africans.
I would like to go on the tour because: This trip would truly be a journey of a lifetime as I would be travelling, seeing our beautiful country. As part of the Gay Flag SA team I will be able to get involved in an effective awareness campaign and helping out communities we encounter along the way. I will be able to make wonderful new friends and meet influential people in the SA LGBTI community. I am an activist and this would be the perfect networking opportunity and learning experience as I am busy establishing my own LGBTI advocacy and awareness organisation. Above all else I will be there to have fun and show South Africa, and even the world, how Proud I am of our LGBTI community and personally how proud I am to be gay and a drag queen.
About me: I am a 25 year old proud gay man, originally from a small town in the North West, but now in Johannesburg. I love life and love to laugh and surround myself with uplifting people. I love trying new things that take me out of my comfort zone.
I would like to go on the tour because: I wanted to enter as soon as I heard what it’s about, I imme
iately thought of the movie Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. And how it was the first “gay” movie I watched. I loved it. Sitting there as a little boy with a rugby ball on my lap, mesmerised by these colourful people. And I used this as my inspiration in my design. I am in no way a professional. I love our LGBTI community and would love to contribute and learn from it in all its diversity. And show others through this process that we are also just people that are a bit different, but that’s OK.
The Gay Flag of SA is now a fully registered non-profit company, determined to give PR, communications and marketing assistance to other existing LGBTI non-profits, activists or community based organisations. As such the Gay Flag SA has canvassed broadly for charities to make use of the tour’s infrastructure, media reach and itinerary to do advocacy and outreach work for each stop of the tour.
The Gay Flag SA is in consultation at the moment with both PASSOP (which works for the rights of immigrants and combats both xenophobia and homophobia equally) and OUT Well Being (which delivers support in terms of HIV/AIDS and gay identity) to formalise practical and attainable plans for the proposed work they’d like to do during the tour. The best proposal will be deliberated upon by the Gay Flag of SA team, Phindi Malaza of FEW and Glenn De Swart of Health4Men and announced with the finalists on the 1st of September
The Gay Flag of SA/ Budget coach will complete more than 4000 km in their two weeks on the road with stops at various charities such as SOHACA, EPOC and Health4Men during the day with appearances at the top clubs and bars in South Africa. Click here to view the itinerary for further information.
This flamboyant team will be hosted by the Protea Victoria Junction in Cape Town as well as the luxurious and trendy Saffron Guesthouse & 12 Stars Apartments in Mellville for the duration of their stay in Joburg.
You are invited to party with the Gay Flag SA coach team at these events and to come and see the coach parked right next to the club house at Joburg Pride. “We have a big surprise regarding the flag for everyone on the day of Joburg Pride, so do watch the main stage and come and visit us on the coach after the parade,” says Eugene Brockman, designer and chair person of the Gay Flag of SA non-profit.