Seeing Brittany Lynn playing Bea Arthur as Dorothy at the Raven in New Hope, PA in her spoof The Golden Gurls, promised to be a fun-filled evening down memory lane, and it didn’t disappoint. With Dorothy’s quick wit and no holds tongue, Brittany delivered what we expect of Dorothy, and then some
Brittany Lynn got her start playing Alice in the Brady Bunch tour at Philadelphia’s Comedy Center in 1993. She also played Frankenfurter in the Rocky Horror Show. It was the legendary drag queen, Tinsel Garland who saw Brittany’s performance and asked her to come back and perform at the 12th Air Command Bar in Philadelphia. She was hooked.
Living in South Philadelphia until she was 18, she said she always sang in school. She was a theatre major at Temple University and studied journalism. On her first night doing a drag show of her own, Brittany was stopped at a red light when performer Melanie Banks pulled up. The two became friends and Melanie taught Brittany how to put on make-up and walk in heels. Drag queens Amanda Love and Joey Martini were also mentors to Brittany.
Brittany has more recently performed in Asbury Park, and at Woodbury’s Gay Pride Comedy Night. She worked in Atlantic City back in 1998 at the Studio VI Bar and with Sandy Beach in at Caesar’s, Borgata and the Taj. She won the Miss’d America pageant after being the runner up for five years.
More recently, at Tabu Sports Bar in Philadelphia, Brittany thought of recreating TV sitcoms for brunch. During that time, theatre star Bella Cane approached Brittany about playing Dorothy in the Golden Gurls show. The show was casted and as of this month, they will have performed 9 episodes of the endearing sitcom, adding their own parodies. Bella Cane plays Rose, Pissi Myles as Blanche and Connor Michalchuk as Sophia.
Brittany said her favorite thing about Bea Arthur was her candor and the fact that she always said what was on her mind. Briitany was always a big fan of hers and would have loved to have met Bea Arthur. A lot of the Golden Gurls show is improv and Brittany said she makes it her own.
Brittany is also responsible for creating the Drag Mafia (it appears on her business card). She said when she started performing in drag, a lot of clubs would short the performers and not provide dressing rooms for them. So, she started a “drag union” and made sure they had better conditions.
Charities are near and dear to her, being a big believer of giving back to the community, among them MANNA and the Morris Animal Refuge.
Perhaps one of the most famous parades in Philadelphia is the Mummers Parade on New Year’s Day. In 2012, Brittany Lynn and her “Drag Brigade” were the first LGBT group to march in the parade. Philly has come a long way in supporting LGBT rights she said. Back in 2015 on her 40th birthday, she was honored by Philadelphia’s Mayor and City Council and the Mummers for all her work and dedication in the parade and to the City of Philadelphia. March 15, 2015, was officially Brittany Lynn Day.
Brittany’s career is now taking a new turn. She is touring with her new stand-up comedy out of drag and is doing a local cable TV show on Scrapple TV. She is continuing to evolve her Golden Gurls show and will open for Debbie Gibson. “Every time I think of stopping, I get another job,” she said. But if you enjoy what you do, it doesn’t get old, she said. Adding that, “life is too short. I would do it over, and over, again.”
To follow Brittany Lynn and her Drag Mafia, follow her on Facebook Drag Diva Brittany Lynn or at phillydragmafia.com.