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Clayton Brown’s performance in ‘Georgia McBride’ as quintessential queen-maker is impeccable


On stage now through June 30 at the Laboratory Theater of Florida is the Southwest Florida premiere of Matthew Lopez’s The Legend of Georgia McBride. Clayton W. Brown plays the part of Miss Tracy Mills, an aging drag queen who, in spite of her charm, poise and good graces, lands in a failing backwater dive bar in Panama City Beach with one last chance to revive her flagging career.

Brown’s performance as the quintessential queen-maker is, in a word, impeccable. He brings the heat and burns down the house with every lip-synching musical number. Each costume is more dazzling than the one before, and he has an uncanny knack for dryly delivering sage witticisms, mainly to his ersatz protégé, a young redneck Elvis impersonator who, in a last ditch effort to live life in the spotlights, takes on the role of drag heir apparent, country queen Georgia McBride. But Miss Tracy does more than mentor Casey on the fine points of drag and feigning femininity for growing crowds of appreciative patrons. She imparts the profound wisdom Casey needs to become a better person and the man he truly wants to be.

From Kansas City’s Starlight Theater and Tallahassee’s Evening of Dance to venues in Los Angeles and Mexico, the native Chicagoan has lived and performed all over the United States and beyond. Locally, he has been seen at The Naples Dinner Theater and The Naples Players at the Sugden Theatre, with The Emcee in Cabaret, the Prince in Cinderella and Teen Angel in Grease among his favorite roles.

When he’s not on stage, Clay divides his time between ClaytonCreations, creating custom murals and paintings, traveling for Chanel as a makeup artist for special events, and singing with Three For All, a professional trio.

June 13, 2019.


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