On Stage

Coming Home

Out and about with Betty Desire

Attend

What: Betty Desire: Coming Home

When: 7 pm Fri., Nov. 17

Where: Lincoln Theatre, Mount Vernon

Cost: $20

Info: http://www.lincolntheatre.org

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

If you’ve ever visited Rumors Cabaret on a Sunday night, chances are you’re familiar with Betty Desire’s cheeky karaoke performances, raunchy humor and live storytelling. But the real story of Betty Desire is one of tireless advocacy for equality and community.

Betty—a character developed by Bellingham resident Matt Endrizzi—has been singing and delighting local audiences for more than 22 years. But for Betty, her performances have always been a way to connect with people and build community.

When she hosts a special career retrospective Fri., Nov. 17 at Mount Vernon’s Lincoln Theatre, audiences attending “Betty Desire: Coming Home” will experience songs from all her past performances, what those songs meant to her, stories from her life and new material. If you’ve never been to one of her shows, Betty says to expect relaxed, comfortable times of laughter, listening to music and connecting with people. She’s also notorious for interviewing complete strangers, so be prepared to be singled out.

“I started Betty not because I wanted to be an entertainer, but because it gave me the vehicle to connect with so many people,” she says. “The mask of theater really allows me to walk up to a table and instigate a conversation. So I work at finding someone who is solitary and bringing them into the rest of the group.”

Endrizzi, who was born and raised in Mount Vernon, says he grew up wanting to be a pastor and graduated from Western Bible College in Clayburn, British Columbia. Somewhere along the line, Matt became Bellingham’s most iconic drag queen instead. And although her plans changed, Betty says she eventually realized she didn’t need to be in a church to have a congregation because her performances allowed her to connect with individuals in a way that hadn’t been possible before.

“I wasn’t off track thinking that I should go into pastoral work,” Betty says. “What I didn’t realize at the time was that my pastoral work was my daily life. Every time I do a Betty show I want to leave the audience uplifted in some way—just like a pastor would. I really feel like my job is to do everything I can to spread joy and compassion because I believe we all need that. Especially right now.”

In addition to continuing to perform on a regular basis and publish The Betty Pages—described as “Cascadia’s most inclusive alternative-lifestyle tabloid”—Betty says her next goal is to raise money and create an historical society so people have a resource for past accomplishments and failures of the gay community that she has called home for so long.

“That’s the plan for the next 62 years of my life,” she says. “Making sure the accomplishments of us old farts aren’t lost n the sands of time.”

Smoking Crow
More On Stage...
Broad Comedy
When feminism is funny

In a clever sketch dubbed “The United States Extreme Right Cheerleading Squad,” the talented women of Broad Comedy execute some sweet moves while “rah-rah-rah-ing” about everything from not being worried about climate change (because of Armageddon) to gay marriage (“Who needs equal rights…

more »
Xanadu
A muse on roller skates

If a Greek muse who can sing like an angel and roller skate like a pro isn’t quite enough to pique your interest, then perhaps the fact that Xanadu also features forbidden love, rainbow-hued legwarmers, giant disco balls and a bestselling soundtrack will.

While the plot of the play…

more »
Paradigm Shift
Brass Monkey and beyond

Being that it’ll be the first weekend of a new year, it’s fitting that “Paradigm Shift” will be the theme of iDiOM Theater’s latest Brass Monkey Theater Club gathering taking place Fri., Jan. 5 at the Sylvia Center for the Arts.

Defined as “an important change that happens when the usual…

more »
Events
Today
Cascade Games Convention

9:00am|Bellingham Cruise Terminal

Wild Things

9:30am|Lake Padden Park

Garage Sale and Health Fair

12:00pm|Settlemyer Hall

Books and Bites

2:00pm|Blaine Library

Post-Holiday Detox

2:00pm|Cordata Community Food Co-op

Coffee Tasting

3:00pm|Camber Cafe

Food Not Bombs

4:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Bellingham Folk Festival

4:30pm|Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship

Art Auction Gala

5:30pm|Whatcom Museum's Lightcatcher Building

Anacortes Women's March

6:00pm|Depot Arts Center

Family Story Night

6:00pm|Fairhaven Library

Sierra Club Winter Member Party

6:30pm|Boundary Bay Brewery

Xanadu

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Opera Scenes

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center

The Flick

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

Tropical Heat Wave Dance

8:00pm|Majestic

Space Trek, Backyard Brawl

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Five for Fighting

8:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

FiveFor
Tomorrow
Cascade Games Convention

9:00am|Bellingham Cruise Terminal

Garage Sale and Health Fair

12:00pm|Settlemyer Hall

Bellingham Folk Festival

4:30pm|Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship

Xanadu

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

The Flick

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

Space Trek, Backyard Brawl

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|Ferndale Senior Center

VFW Breakfast

8:00am|VFW Hall

Smoking Crow Opening

9:00am|Smoking Crow

Mason Bee Management

9:00am|Garden Spot Nursery

Nordic Ski Ambassadors

10:00am|SnoPark at Salmon Ridge

Plant Society Field Trip

10:00am|Birch Bay State Park

Skagit Eagle Festival

10:00am|Howard Miller Steelhead Park

March on Bellingham

10:00am|Bellingham City Hall

Winter Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Of marching and mending

12:00pm

Travel to Cuzco and Machu PIcchu

1:00pm|Blaine Library

Mysticism in Art

2:00pm|Skagit County Historical Museum

Mona Openings

2:00pm|Museum of Northwest Art

Cedar Weaving Workshop

2:00pm|Lynden Library

Teddy Bear Biographies

2:00pm|Ferndale Library

Exploring Port

2:00pm|Seifert & Jones Wine Merchants

Learn to Grow a Vegetable Garden

2:00pm|Sumas Library

The Fight Against Human Trafficking

3:00pm|Everson Library

Kindgom Quest

4:00pm|Village Books

Music and Memories

5:00pm|Swinomish Casino & Lodge

Robert Burns Supper

5:30pm|Littlefield Celtic Center

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Ensemble Electra

7:30pm|Jansen Art Center

The Good Lovelies

7:30pm|Lincoln Theatre

FiveFor Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1
Sunday
Cascade Games Convention

9:00am|Bellingham Cruise Terminal

Bellingham Folk Festival

4:30pm|Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship

Xanadu

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Skagit Eagle Festival

10:00am|Howard Miller Steelhead Park

Community Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Post #43

Rabbit Ride

8:00am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Rabbit Ride

8:30am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Bellingham Chamber Music Society

3:00pm|First Congregational Church

Nonfiction and Memoir Writing Group

3:00pm|Village Books

Southside Community Meal

5:00pm|Our Saviour's Lutheran Church

Way North Comedy

7:00pm|Farmstrong Brewing Co.

see our complete calendar »

Village Books FiveFor Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1