This week is Rainbow Week in Trinity College, and what better way to get people involved than with an intense lip-syncing competition? Last night’s ‘Lip Sync For Your Life!’ event, hosted by none other than Trinity’s Q Soc, was a lip-syncing extravaganza, perfect for all you mega-fans of RuPaul’s Drag Race.
The competition took place in the basement of Wigwam, the stage set up with a rainbow flag backdrop and a neccessary glitter ball. The judges for the evening’s entertainment were Jessica Nic Eoin, Samuel Riggs, and Dublin’s hottest young drag queen, Dia Buit. Hosting the event was Leo Connell, who engaged with the audience in an enthusiastic and exuberant manner throughout the evening. But the real question remains, how good were the actual contestants?
There were many fierce and unforgettable performances throughout the night. The reigning champion, Isaac Wood, pulled out all the stops for two numbers – a sexually charged rendition of The Circle of Life from The Lion King, and later an equally rambunctious performance of Justin Bieber’s Sorry. Felix O’Connor lip-synced to One Republic’s Everybody Loves Me with the necessary cocky swagger, even pulling Jane D’Altuin up on stage for some impromptu dancing. Hiram Harrington and Busé Tobin performed Bloodhound Gang’s The Bad Touch, which featured a seductive chair routine and ended in Hiram getting drenched with water – unnecessary, but wildly entertaining.
Following the interval, Kyle Chambers, dressed in a striking black corset, took on Beyoncé’s mammoth track Partition. Kyle surpassed all expectations with his expert choreography and simmering intensity. Jane D’Altuin’s performance of Rebel Rebel by David Bowie provided a welcome reprieve from the bubblegum pop that had permeated the night. Surprisingly, it also received the harshest critique of the night, with judge Jess saying that it was “dead…like Bowie”. However, I personally disagreed.
There was a strong and recurring High School Musical theme scattered throughout the night. Laura Killeen and Aaron Barry performed Ryan and Sharpay’s anthem Bop to the Top, with their performance managing to perfectly capture the sickly sweetness of that dynamic Disney duo. Jane D’Altuin and Leo O’Connor performed I Don’t Dance with energetic choreography and an added sexual chemistry, resulting in an impactful performance. Leo O’Connor, under the pseudonym of ‘Miss Gender’, later performed another High School Musical classic ‘Bet On It’. Leo succeeded in conveying the raw emotion of this rebellious track, and it was yet another throwback to our Disney-fuelled childhoods.
My personal favourite performance from the competition was hands-down the LGBTR-Hoes (Emma Purser, Sean O’Carroll and Paraic McLean) and their sickening rendition of Read U Wrote U by the cast of RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars 2. Emma tackled Alaska’s verse with ease, and delivered it with unfaltering sass and attitude. Sean’s version of Detox’s verse was sexually-charged and overflowing with confidence. Paraic’s verse was as cold as ice, and even Katya herself would have appreciated his intimidating aura. Both myself and the audience were grateful for the omission of Roxxxy Andrews’ underwhelming verse from the show. I had considered this act to be a shoe-in for the final, but alas they ended up coming away with the Miss Congeniality award.
Following the contestants’ performances, we were treated to a sultry performance of Black Velvet from Dia Buit. Although Dia had a minor chair/heel malfunction, the performance served as a masterclass in how to lip-sync for your life. The night culminated with an intense lip-sync battle between two of the groups, Laura and Aaron versus Hiram and Busé. They were told to lip-sync one last time to an unknown track, which was then revealed to be the Britney Spears classic …Baby One More Time. Although it was a close call, Hiram and Busé came out victorious and were declared this year’s lip-syncing champions.
The ‘Lip Sync For Your Life!’ competition was undoubtedly a success, and will go down as one of the highlights of this year’s Rainbow Week. Without a doubt, the performances seen last night will be analysed and discussed among Q Soc members for weeks to come. If you didn’t make it this time, make a space in your calendar for 2018, as this is one society event you should not be missing out on.