The Queen, a 1968 documentary that captures pre-Stonewall drag by following the lives of New York City divas, has surfaced on YouTube in full. Here’s the video description:
The Queen was filmed in NYC in 1967 and released in theaters in 1968. In 1967 it was illegal for men to dress as women. The documentary follows a 1967 Drag pageant judged by Andy Warhol among others. It stars Jack Doroshow aka Flawless Mother Sabrina, Richard Finochio aka Rachel Harlow and Crystal LaBeija. Crystal went on to start The House of LaBeija pageants which was the premise of the 90’s documentary “Paris is Burning."
In 1972 Richard Finochio underwent sex reassignment surgery to become Rachel Harlow, she began dating John B. Kelly, Grace Kelly’s brother. The relationship ended when John’s mother said she would disinherit him if he married Rachel. Rachel opened the Philadelphia night club “Harlow’s” in the 1970’s. The only person to surface since this classic film was made is Jack Doroshow when he was interviewed by James St. James on YouTube.
International Chrysis (1951-1990) can be seen as a teenage boy rehearsing dance numbers. These are the queens who opened the doors for RuPaul and RuPaul’s Drag Race of today.