ADDED ON: 10/03/2018

How Russia Drove Crimea’s LGBTI Community Underground

10/02/2018 | Daily Beast

The buxom drag queen hikes up her sequined emerald gown and reaches into the crowd to pull a man onto a makeshift stage. “Stand there, handsome,” she says and then coaxes two more volunteers on stage before announcing that they are now taking part in a striptease contest. As Ricky Martin’s “Livin’ La Vida Loca” begins playing from the speakers, the pants start coming off. Drag shows like this used to be a regular fixture at a small handful of venues around Crimea. Now, this bar in the small resort town of Simeiz is the only place left where a drag queen can shimmy to dated Western pop. Locals say it’s the last gay bar on the peninsula. And it may not last much longer.


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