The Miss Gay America Pageant is coming around again, and again one of Nashville’s most talented queens is a strong contender. This year Play Dance Bar Playmate Brooke Lynn Hytes is competing, having qualified in Ohio. And she’s definitely one to watch!
She is a highly decorated queen, winning multiple Canadian titles before expanding her sights to the United States. In 2013, she became Derby City Entertainer of the Year, and was first alternate for 2013 Entertainer of the Year. That same year she also won Miss Michigan Continental 2013, and first alternate for Miss Continental at Nationals—a crown she took in 2014.
Besides being an amazing pageant queen, Brooke Lynn Hytes brings unusually high skill levels to her performance and competition. In Canada, she was a professional dancer studying at Canada's National Ballet School, before embarking her drag career.
In the midst of preparing for her competition, she was kind enough to share a few thoughts with O&AN!
Tell our readers a little about your path to competing in the Miss Gay America Pageant!
Sure! I became qualified in April when I placed first runner up at Miss Heart of America in Ohio. As far as preparation goes, I have been working really hard on some new talents, costumes and gowns that best showcase me and my talents.
Participating in a major pageant always takes a dedicated team: tell us a little about your team, how you chose whom to work with, and what they have brought to your efforts?
It certainly takes a village. My "team" consists of my promoters, David Pardue and Corey Wilson, who have been incredible both with their financial as well as emotional support, as well as my good friend Reggie Hobbs, who will be doing my hair and dressing me at the pageant.
I love working with Reggie because he is very calming and soothing—something you need to have around during the chaos that is a pageant. He's also one of the best wig stylists I know.
Pageants aren't cheap. How have you funded your participation, and who have been your major financial supporters?
I paid for most of it myself, actually. My promoters have been very helpful, and I have received great sponsorship from my friend Leslie Steele, as well as my sister Shae Shae Lareese.
What other kinds of support have you received as you've been through this process? Who has been giving you moral support?
Miss Gay America Suzy Wong and former Miss Gay America (2016) Asia O'Hara have really been there for me every step of the way, offering me guidance and tips.
What does it mean to you to participate in this national pageant, and where do you go from here, regardless of a win?
It means a platform to help and inspire others. I want to inspire people to want to be a part of this legacy or just to be better entertainers and people. As far as where I go from here? Hopefully, UP!
How has this particular pageant process changed your outlook, your drag style, your goals, etc.?
It has changed the way I look at my drag. I am starting to view it more as a business and look at it more from that side of things.
It hasn't changed my drag style at all. That is non-negotiable for me. And it really hasn't changed my goals, because my goal has always been to keep on growing, learning and improving and that is exactly what I am doing now.
What would you like to tell our readers?
I am so excited to be competing at MGA this year and I just want to thank everyone for all the love and support! And to all the girls out there who want to do a pageant but are nervous for whatever reason....DO IT! It is worth it. You learn so much about yourself, you get inspired and got get better because of it.
Photo: Aleksander Antonijevic