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The GoPride.com Interview

Aurora Sexton

Born and raised in Colorado, Aurora Sexton began her career in female impersonation in local coffee shops at the age of 13. Two years later, at 15 and with her mother's permission, Aurora joined Guise & Dolls. Later she worked for Tracks 2000 and Dream Nightclub until she turned 21 and headed to the Midwest to pursue her dreams in Chicago.

Since arriving in the Windy City, Aurora quickly became a staple in Chicago's LGBT community. She has put her creative talents to work with regular performances at Hydrate, Kit Kat Lounge & Supper Club, Roscoe's, Spin Nightclub and The Office in Rockford, Illinois.

A well respected icon of nightlife in Chicago, Aurora has hosted various parties and events. She is currently hosting GLITTER at Le Passage and is now a member of the cast at the world famous Baton Show Lounge.

In 2009, Aurora placed in the top 5 at the 2009 Miss Continental Pageant and she more-recently qualified for the 2010 Miss Continental Pageant happening Labor Day weekend, September 5th and 6th, in Chicago.

Here Aurora takes some time away from the stage to talk with ChicagoPride.com's Kinley Preston about the upcoming Miss Continental Pageant.

KP: Congratulations on qualifying for Miss Continental. Tell us more about the pageant.

AS: Miss Continental is the premier pageantry system in the country showcasing the best in the art of female illusion and impersonation. Every year 100's of girls across the country compete at preliminary pageants in there regions and states to qualify to compete at the national contest held here in Chicago every Labor Day weekend. Miss Continental has prelims all over the United States, Toronto, Puerto Rico and Hawaii.

KP: How long has Continental been around and what's the status in the trans community?

AS: Miss Continental will be celebrating it's 30th anniversary this year. Miss Continental is very well respected. It was the first national pageant to welcome trans contestants and over the years transgendered entertainers have dominated the system. Many have the misconception that you have to be trans in order to win which is not true. You have to be talented, intelligent and a well rounded entertainer to win. Body work enhances the illusion but cannot create talent.

KP: What is your inspiration?

AS: Becoming a Miss Continental has been a dream of mine since I first saw a Miss Continental video at the age of 16. I've had many reasons for wanting to win over the years, but now it's about being a part of something prolific - becoming a part of history in an art form that I cherish and am proud to be a part of.

KP: What would winning Miss Continental mean to you?

AS: Winning Miss Continental would mean so many things to me, to be a part of a legacy of legendary entertainers is an honor I can't even imagine yet but I hope to find out in September. (laughs) Touring the country, getting to see places I've never been to, representing my community of Chicago to the rest of the nation and setting the tone for the art form of female impersonation. It's a lot of responsibility but I know that if I am lucky enough to win that I am ready for it all.

KP: A lot of work goes into Continental, can you tell me a little about how you prepare.

AS: Stop eating! (laughs) Competing in Miss Continental or for any national pageant is not a cheap endeavor. Good drag is not cheap and cheap drag is not good. Designing and selecting your wardrobe, working with choreographers and dancers, hairstylists, costume and gown designers, hours of rehearsals, months of planning. A lot of blood, sweat and tears goes into competing for something like this but that's what makes it worth while. It really is a team effort and when you see it all come together at the pageant finals the feeling you have on that stage cannot be duplicated because whether you win or lose there is nothing like the feeling of personal accomplishment.

KP: Any final thoughts?

AS: I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has helped me over the years and especially this year in my preparation for Miss Continental. I hope to see you all there for the national pageant over Labor Day weekend.

Miss Continental 2010 is September 5th and 6th at the Park West Theatre in Chicago. Tickets go on sale July 8th. For more information visit www.batonshowlounge.com.
 
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