Angie Xtravaganza

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Angie Xtravaganza in a still from the 1990 documentary Paris is Burning

Angie Xtravaganza (October 1, 1964 – March 31, 1993) was born in New York City. Angie was raised Angel Segarra, and was a founding member and the Mother of the House of Xtravaganza. Consistent with the tradition of New York's gay ball scene, in 1982 Angie took the House name as her surname. A transgender performer, underground superstar and an active member of New York's gay ball culture, Angie was featured in Jennie Livingston's 1990 documentary film 'Paris is Burning'. By the time the documentary screened to rave reviews, the House of Xtravaganza, the first primarily Latino house within New York's gay ball scene, was almost ten years old and had taken the Harlem ball scene by storm.

Arriving on the streets of New York City at the age of 13, Angie nurtured a family of "children" during her days on the lower westside Navy Pier and the streets of Times Square. Throughout the 1980s and until her death in 1993 Angie and her adopted house children would influence popular culture through the nightlife scene, the performing arts and through the fashion and the recording industries. In 1988 Pulitzer Prize winning author Michael Cunningham wrote "The Slap of Love" about Angie after interviewing her and her sons Danni and Hector Xtravaganza for his novel Flesh and Blood.

Angie died in New York at age 28 from an AIDS-related liver disease. Almost three weeks later The New York Times published an article on the ball scene on the front page of the Sunday "Styles" section, featuring a large photo of Angie Xtravaganza. Entitled "Paris Has Burned",[1] the article recounted the current status of the underground ball scene and the untimely passing of many of its central personalities. In 1994, the year following her death, Junior Vasquez released a house music single simply titled "X", which bore a dedication to the memory of Angie Xtravaganza on the record label. The record remains a popular club anthem today. Angie Xtravaganza's legacy endures through the House of Xtravaganza which remains an active part of New York City's gay ballroom, nightlife, and cultural scene.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Green, Jesse (April 18, 1993). Paris Has Burned - New York Times

BlackBook Magazine; August 22, 2011, "My Experience at the 21st Latex Ball", Steve Lewis.

Details; October, 1988, "Nations", ChiChi Valenti, photography by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders. pgs. 159-174.

New York Times; April 18, 1993, "Paris Has Burned", Jesse Green. Styles Section cover and pg. 1.

Vogue; vol. 178, issue 12, December 1988, "Economy Class", Wayne Maser. pgs. 368-371.

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