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New York drag queen walks off stage in protest of club's general manager

Photo credit:
Mitch Ferrino/Honey Davenport

A New York drag queen named Honey Davenport (above left) was scheduled to perform at the Monster, a popular gay nightclub in NYC’s Greenwich Village, on Saturday but when she walked on stage she was visibly upset, accusing the club's manager of racism.  

Davenport's protest started after it was brought to her attention that the general manager of the venue, Italo Lopez was allegedly not happy with Davenport's  promo show flyer saying it was promoting "black night," and would be "bad for business."

The text conversation was between Lopez and DJ/producer, Mitch Ferrino. Screenshots were sent to Davenport ahead of her Manster drag show. 

"My art has no home where my people are not welcome," wrote the performer on Facebook 

But it wasn't until she was about to begin her show that she announced she was canceling it.

"I cannot be a part of this anymore," she says in an Instagram video at the event. "If you don’t want my people at the party, I won’t be here." The emotional announcement ended after she dropped the mic and walked off. 

She made the following statement to Out:

“First, thank you to everyone who has reached out and spoken up in support.

Taking this step away from a place that I had considered my home was terrifying, and it’s a huge comfort to know that my nightlife family has my back. I’m saddened by the stance that Italo (and in their refusal to respond, The Monster Bar) has taken but unfortunately, I’m not surprised by it.

This happens everywhere. I had to speak up because I knew that not doing so would mean I was complicit in perpetuating these attitudes towards other artists.

Other performers need to know that they don’t have to be mistreated. Our art has no home in a place where we are not respected. Not speaking up would be like saying ‘You just have to take this.’ We have always been a community that fights hate. We must embrace and fight for our queer brothers and sisters of all races. Black people and people of color have had a long history of fighting for our community and we need our community to fight for us now. Our fight is far from over. We have to keep it going. The Monster is going to wait this out and hope it blows over. For real change to happen, we need to keep fighting.”

In an act of solidarity, drag performer Emi Grate emailed Lopez,

"Any space that is unwelcome and unappreciative to black folks, I refuse to do business and build community in," she wrote. "I had always considered the Monster a safe haven for queer people of color, and it is gravely disheartening to see your comments. A proper public apology is in order."

It was decided by Ferrino to also cancel the show LookQueen,  a drag competition originated by Bob the Drag Queen.