The Princess is Right Brings Drag Game Antics to the New Hazlett Theater | Arts + Entertainment | Pittsburgh


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Photo: Renée Rosensteel

Princess Jafar

In 2015, a new figure began to take shape on the Pittsburgh art scene. Calling herself Princess Jafar, the singer, drag artist and performer has hosted events, bringing together other artists and creatives to perform alongside her. These events, titled Princess Jafar and her friendsgave stage time to various local emerging artists.

Princess Jafar will return to the stage for her new show, The Princess is Right: An Interactive Game Show. Taking place at New Hazlett Theater On Thursday, February 17 and Friday, February 18, with screenings at 11 a.m. or 8 p.m., the show will offer attendees a chance to win fabulous trips, cash, and other prizes.

“Even though we are still playing with TV show formats of old sitcoms and late night specials as we have done in previous productions, this show differs from other Princess Jafar shows as it focuses on the game show element,” Princess Jafar said. Pittsburgh City Paper via email. “Our goal with The princess is right is to give back to the public who have gone through a very difficult few years.”

In a separate statement, Princess Jafar expands on this, saying the show “in fact fulfills what local government cannot do” by offering free bus passes, lead filters for tap water , money and washers and dryers.

She adds that the entire cast is made up of LGBTQIA people of color.

Jafar also thanks for working with New Hazlett’s CSA program and with Kristin Helfrich, Rene Conrad, Dylan Baker and Phoebe Coztanza Orr, for helping to elevate the production “to a level that I know the entire team will be extremely proud of. ”

“Princess Jafar has been seen from East Liberty to the South Side producing hilarious late night talk shows,” New Hazlett programming director Kristin Helfrich said in a press release. “We wanted to see what would happen if we supported the princess as she created a fully produced interactive game show with special guests and amazing prizes.”

Princess Jafar moved to Pittsburgh around 2012 and began cutting her teeth in the city’s bars and venues as a drag performer, her original shows being described as “hilarious genre productions” incorporating themes like 90s pop culture and queer influences.

Princess Jafar is from Ohio, a state often pitted against Pittsburgh, but Jafar says Pittsburgh is where she found her home.

“Pittsburgh is where all my dreams came true,” says Princess Jafar. “I grew up feeling like an outcast like a queer Arab kid in the middle of Ohio, and it wasn’t until 2012 or 2013 and moving to Pittsburgh that I felt the encouragement to embrace me with confidence. I am eternally grateful to the city and my friends and collaborators that I have made here.”

She says that’s why she speaks so loudly about the injustices affecting her loved ones and communities in Pittsburgh, “especially when it comes to racial justice, access to clean water, fair pay, housing and medical care”.

This year marks five years for the performer playing Princess Jafar, and the birthday got her thinking about how she can be a “bad guy for good” while also being an artist and community member. . A press release says she has raised more than $25,000 for Pittsburgh queer artists of color since 2017 and plans to increase that amount to $50,000 over the next few years. As part of the New Hazlett show, Princess Jafar will also donate $500 to the winner’s chosen charity.

The Princess is Right: An Interactive Game Show. 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. from Thursday February 17 to Friday February 18. 6 Allegheny Square East., North side. $15-25.16 and up.

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