The Mummers invited Brittany Lynn and the Drag Mafia to participate in the 2013 event but, next year, drag performers will be selected through a series of contests, a proposal spearheaded by a new committee tasked with streamlining drag inclusion in the event.
The committee consists of Councilmen Jim Kenney and Mark Squilla, Franny Price, Tami Sortman, Mark Segal, Lisa Thompson, Michael Byrne, Ian Morrison — who portrays Brittany Lynn — and Scott Brown, who will serve as the liaison between the group and the Mummers.
There will be 11 spots available in the drag contingent, Price said, and two will automatically go to the 2013 Miss Philadelphia Black Gay Pride and Miss Philly Pride. The other nine performers will be identified through drag contests at Gayborhood bars, with the winner of each contest representing that venue in the Mummers event.
“We want to make it fair and competitive,” Price said.
The contests will start next month.
The committee will also set up formal guidelines and requirements for participation and work with Mummers leadership to ensure that the performances at the Convention Center run smoothly.
“This was Jim Kenney’s baby,” Brown said. “He wanted to get this started and asked how we can keep it up and running and keep it growing every year. So we told him we’d take the bull by the horns and start this committee, and now we’ve really got the ball rolling.”
Brown said the committee ultimately wants to ensure that the LGBT community continues to play a role in the longstanding New Year’s Day tradition.
“We want to communicate the importance of our community and show the creativity of the gay community,” he said. “We want to team up with the Mummers and help make a wonderful show.”