Madeline Terbasket, aka Rez Daddy, is a Syilx, Ho-chunk and Anishinaabe performer who uses burlesque and drag to safely express their sexuality as a Two-Spirit person. Photo submitted by Madeline Terbasket.

Madeline Terbasket, aka Rez Daddy, is a Syilx, Ho-chunk and Anishinaabe performer who uses burlesque and drag to safely express their sexuality as a Two-Spirit person. Photo submitted by Madeline Terbasket.

Rez Daddy take on ‘pandemic blues’ as part of South Okanagan Similkameen Pride

The event is scheduled to take place via Zoom on June 16 at 7 p.m.

By Kelsie Kilawna, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

THE DISCOURSE

In these times of heaviness and grief, Madeline Terbasket, who is also known by their drag name, Rez Daddy, plans to bring good medicine in an upcoming drag and burlesque show. Organized by the South Okanagan Similkameen Pride Society (SOSPS) as part of Pride month, Swallow Your Pride is an Indigiqueer, Two-Spirit burlesque and drag show for folks over 18. The event is scheduled to take place via Zoom on June 16 at 7 p.m.

“We wanted to do the Swallow Your Pride event because it’s also National Indigenous History month, so we wanted it to be a Two-Spirit, Indigiqueer event and I’m just so excited for the line-up,” Rez Daddy tells IndigiNews over the phone.

“I was not sure about promoting it because everyone is in mourning,” they say. “But I think love and laughter is really healing for people and I still think we should celebrate Pride month because it’s really important.”

The event’s line-up features five Indigiqueer and Two-Spirit kin: “Lynx Chase, Eddi Licious, Stone E. Rivers, Rose Parks, Lou Lou la Duchesse de Riere, and myself,” says Rez Daddy.

After falling in love with the art as a youth, Rez Daddy says they first got into burlesque in 2017, through the Screaming Chicken Theatrical Society in the unceded territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwu7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ / sel̓il̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) nations.

They went on tour shortly after completing the program, performing in burlesque shows throughout many territories. Then, in 2020 just before COVID-19 swept the globe, they released their drag identity “Rez Daddy” to the world.

Ever since they’ve been utilizing both drag and burlesque to express themselves.

“My signature burlesque act is `Water Spirit’s Retribution’ and it’s about what water would do to you after taking it for granted for so long,” they say.

As for their drag performance, they embody their inner Rez Daddy.

“A lot of people still clock me as female all the time, so Rez Daddy helps me express my masculine side, and to feel that power and energy,” says the self-described “sensation from the Syilx Nation.”

Rez Daddy says reclaiming their sexuality through the art of drag and burlesque has been a beautiful way to connect with themselves and raise their confidence, as well as take back what’s been taken.

“I am so much more in touch with my body and that makes me so much more in touch with the land because I’m part of the land and all of creation,” says Rez Daddy, who also goes by the name “Mother Girth.”

“I think with residential `schools’ and colonization, our sexualities have been so deeply affected, so it has helped me to access my sexuality in a way that’s safe and isn’t overwhelming.”

As part of South Okanagan Similkameen Pride, their upcoming show will explore “Rez Daddy’s pandemic blues,” they say.

“It’s about what’s going on in Rez Daddy’s head when the pandemic hits and he’s run out of lotion and has no Aunties in his phone texting him back, and he’s in the deep end,” they say with a roaring laugh — like a “skim-freakin-xist” (black freakin’ bear).

They hope people tune into the free show to witness people expressing their true diverse selves, they say.

“I want us to just be seen as we are, as badass Two-Spirit, Indigiqueer people, and I hope that people have fun.”

“Swallow Your Pride” isn’t the only event planned for South Okanagan Similkameen Pride. On June 28 at 7 p.m., people can check out “Two Spirit Stories,” a virtual panel. Registration and ticket information for these events is available on the SOSPS website.

Rez Daddy explains that a big part of their role, as they see it, is to support youth to embrace and feel safer in their own identities.

“My hope for the future is that Indigenous Peoples, and our communities, become less homophobic, and we can accept our queer kin more. What’s really important to me is making a future where Indigenous youth are able to be who they are, and be loved unconditionally and truly unconditionally,” says Rez Daddy.

READ MORE: Task force shares ideas to help Canadian sports associations be more LGBTQ-inclusive

READ MORE: Penticton city by-election candidate thanks person who vandalized election sign

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

IndigenousLGBTQ

Just Posted

Traffic will be diverted through Radium along highways 93 and 95 as a part of the closures. (Claire Palmer photo)
Extended closures to Trans-Canada Highway announced east of Golden this fall

It’s the second round of extended closures as a part of Phase 4 of the Kicking Horse Canyon Project

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Fruit farmers in the Okanagan and Creston valleys are in desperate need of cherry harvesters amid COVID-19 work shortages. (Photo: Unsplash/Abigail Miller)
‘Desperate’ need for workers at Okanagan cherry farms

Fruit farmers are worried they’ll have to abandon crops due to COVID-19 work shortages

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Photograph By MICHAEL POTESTIO.KTW
Former Kamloops security gaurd wants job back after kicking incident caught on video

Rick Eldridge quit when a video surfaced of him kicking a man outside a facility for homeless

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

People participated in a walk to honour the 215 children found at a former Kamloops residential school, as well as residential school survivors. (Twila Amato/Black Press Media)
Kelowna marks National Indigenous Peoples’ Day with walk to remember Kamloops 215

“Let’s speak the truth and deal with the truth, and heal.”

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

A home on Cameo Drive sustained major damage due to an early morning fire Monday, June 21. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)
UPDATE: Fire sparked during Vernon home renovation

Heavy black smoke from Cameo Drive home, no one inside

The new Civic Memorial Park will incorporate pieces of the 80-year-old arena it replaces. (Artists rendering)
Pieces of Civic Arena reclaimed for new Vernon park

City centre space to incorporate wood from the historic arena

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

Most Read