Disclaimer: This is not a comprehensive timeline, but is accurate as far as it goes. It's a record of this King's road and is my attempt to document key events that were formative in the emergence of the modern art of Drag King in the cities I've lived, toured or have friends in from 1980-2002. As this has been primarily San Francisco, NYC and London, UK - that's who's scenes are chiefly represented. Thanks to Leigh Crow, Laurie Bushman, Nancy Kravitz, Stafford, and Erin O'Neill for their input. Here's hoping it's a beginning and others will add their contributions. Dedicated with love and respect to my Drag Dad Peggy Shaw. Vive Le Roi!
-A Toone San Francisco, CA 2002
1980 - NEW YORK, NY The 1st W.O.W. Festival features Jordy Mark & Annie Toone (left) in their rock revue Sex & Drag & Rock n Role. They sing songs as men and women, crossing gender on-stage. Peggy Shaw does a scene as James Dean.
Adele and Toone pass as men, dress in tuxedos and do choreographed dance moves ala Michael Jackson at The Mudd Club, Danceteria and CBGB's.
They open for The Clash at the famous Bonds shows in Time's Square and play with Richard Hell, The Go-Gos and Allen Ginsberg at The Peppermint Lounge. Iggy Pop, David Byrne and Brian Eno are fans. John Lurie famously calls them "Adele & the Drells".
1982 - The Bloods go to Europe for the 2nd time and implode in Amsterdam on the eve of their first record release - the ode to butch-femme role-play Button-Up.
1982-5 - AMSTERDAM NL Toone forms Idiotsavant with German drummer Leroi Pink. Toone and Leroi pass as men. The European press make much of this.
Peti Buchel creates a comic strip called Annie that is based on Toone's real life passing antics and always pictures her in a tuxedo. It runs for 2 years in Dutch magazine Homologie. Idiotsavant release 2 records, their single Go Fuck Yrself is a pirate radio hit across Europe.
NEW YORK Peggy (right) & Lois found the W.O.W. Café Theater.
1985-1989 - LONDON UK Moving from Holland to London, Toone meets Della Disgrace, Sophie Moorcock and Billy Goodfellow. From 1987-1990 all are members of the Chain Reaction collective where they pass, pack and do genderfuck erotic performance for a lesbian only audience.
LONDON Toone creates the original 'packing' demonstration featuring Pom as a photo essay on the back cover of lesbian sex magazine Quim's first issue. Created in 88, released spring 89. Toone shot the cover, Del's photos appear throughout, as does a controversial story by Hans Scheirl, Sophie is editor.
1987 - NEW YORK Peggy Shaw receives the first of 3 Village Voice Obie Awards for playing a man in Dress Suits to Hire. A collaboration with Lois Weaver and NEA 4 rebel grrl, Playwright and Performance Artist Holly Hughes.