2 min

Mado’s got talent

Montreal drag legend makes her standup debut

Mado spins at the Green Space party at WorldPride in Toronto. Credit: Spencer Xiong

After dazzling thousands with her hilarious Mado’s Got Talent outdoor show at Montreal’s Just for Laughs festival this summer, Mado Lamotte, Montreal comedian and drag legend, is ready to premiere her first solo comedy show, called the One-Mado Show.

“It will be a real standup comic show with a couple of songs,” says Mado, the stage name for Luc Provost, former UQAM theatre student and acerbic Montreal entertainer. “I’ve never really done that before. So I wrote the monologue. This is not an improv show and it’s not a drag show. This is Mado telling stories, jokes and anecdotes from her life, everything related to her world.”

Mado Lamotte has done it all, from posing for her own wax figure at Montreal’s Grevin Wax Museum to being a spokesmodel for a major potato chip company. Not to mention, her statue doubles nicely as the marquee of her famed Village nightclub, Cabaret Mado.

“My cabaret is not enough for me; I don’t have more than a few minutes to talk to the crowd before I introduce the next drag queen,” she says. “So my new show is to see if I can take it to the next level.”

Mado is arguably best known for hosting the huge drag show Mascara at Montreal’s queer arts festival Divers/Cité. But after 16 years, she quit Divers/Cité this past May. It was time to move on, she says.

“This past year has been a very big year for me. I’ve had big years like this before, such as 1996, when I first did my bingo and was huge on TV. Mado was the next big thing! Then I came back big again in 2002, which was the opening of my cabaret and my first show in Paris. Then in 2013, I decided to end Mascara because I wanted the opportunity to do something else. Just for Laughs offered me my big Mado’s Got Talent show, and now I’m excited to premiere my One-Mado Show.”

So scooch over, Lady Bunny and Bianca Del Rio, is there a new standup comedy bitch in town?

“Not quite,” Mado says. “I don’t do the same thing those bitches do, because they are real bitches! All they do is bitch and bitch and bitch! And they do it very well. But they don’t tell you a story about their lives. Mado is more on the soft side of bitching. She is more a raconteuse — a storyteller — and she’s more of an intellectual.”

“If it works out well, we’ll announce new dates for Montreal in March 2015 and we’ll tour it across Quebec. The plan is to adapt the show and take it to Paris, and if there is demand for it in the French community, we could take it to Ottawa and Toronto as well.”