Press "Enter" to skip to content

Chappell Roan celebrates Queerness at Sold Out Showbox performance

Nearing the end of her Midwest Princess Tour, “Casual” singer/songwriter, Chappell Roan, celebrated the Queer community, encouraging them to be loud and proud. With the same free expression heard in her popular single, “Pink Pony Club, Roan performed to a packed house on Saturday, Nov. 11, at The Showbox, downtown Seattle’s iconic and intimate venue. 

JayAre Quezada | The Seattle Collegian Chappell Roan at The Showbox

After releasing her debut album, “The Rise and Fall of a Midwest Princess,” on Sept. 22, Roan and her bandmates set out on a 41-stop tour. Each of the tour dates had a fun dress code. A common trend popularized by artists such as Beyoncé and Taylor Swift — Roan captured the essence of audience engagement by choosing an on-brand theme for Seattle, Space. 

Shimmers of silver and neon illuminated the crowd, a majority identifying with the LGBTQ+ community. Queer joy not only energized fans, it also connected them. Compliments on outfits and togetherness displayed how a safe space enables everyone to feel the camaraderie of community. It’s a perfect display of Roan’s community-building philosophy. This level of intimacy between fans was strengthened at a pre-party, set up by Roan’s team, at Capitol Hill’s Queer/Bar. By creating pre-parties, Roan extends a celebration of Queerness that correlates with her own. 

JayAre Quezada | The Seattle Collegian Chappell performing at The Showbox

Roan, 25, comes from the town of Willard, Missouri. After beginning her foray into music at fourteen, uploading cover songs on YouTube, Roan was signed to Atlantic Records by the age of seventeen. Gaining popularity, Roan then left her midwest town in 2017 to pursue her dreams, relocating to the city of Los Angeles. 

She would go on tour as the opening act for Vance Joy, living out her pop-star dream. That is, until 2020, when Roan would be dropped by Atlantic Records due to her single, “Pink Pony Club,” not selling enough copies to satisfy the label. She moved back to the Midwest and continued to grow as an artist. The moment that changed her trajectory, both as an artist and person, was turning 21. Recalling it as a “Spiritual Experience,” Roan visited The Abbey, a gay bar in West Hollywood. During that visit, Roan fully realized her Queerness and the importance of safe spaces that offered room for self-actualization. 

JayAre Quezada | The Seattle Collegian Seattle Drag Queen, Kylie Mooncakes

She mirrors that sentiment during her shows, inviting local Drag performers from each city to open for her. At the Showbox, three local queens — Sofia D’ Torah, Rowan Ruthless, and Kylie Mooncakes — graced the stage with swift and exhilarating performances. Each performer swayed from stage to photo pit, where a barricade separated them from the crowd. The audience sang along to songs made famous by Britney Spears, Beyoncé and others.

The energy continued as Roan, sporting a mesh silver outfit with little metal plating, took to the stage after her bandmates, all wearing white jumpsuits, began to play the first song of her newest album, “Femininomenon.” 

JayAre Quezada | The Seattle Collegian Rowan Ruthless soars through her performance

Roan and her bandmates powered through the sixteen-song setlist. All but one was her original music. Near the end of the set Roan performed a righteous, party-jumping rendition of Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance,” The venue shook as each audience member danced along, singing lyrics they knew all too well. Roan glowed, as did her bandmates, with whom she shared undeniable chemistry.

JayAre Quezada | The Seattle Collegian Sofia D’ Torah brings the moves to The Showbox stage

Ending the show with “Pink Pony Club,” the single that ironically got her dropped from her label, Roan demonstrated the ability to feel free within one’s own Queerness. In a room full of Queer people who, at one point in their lives had felt alienated from situations that failed to provide safe spaces, all came together to celebrate one another. Before exiting the stage, Roan thanked everyone for attending the show and purchasing tickets. One follar of each ticket was donated to “For The Gworls,” an organization that helps Black Transgender people pay for rent, gender-affirming surgery, and co-pays for medicine, doctor visits, and travel expenses. Watching her exit the stage, it’s easy to see that the world has a Queer star on the rise. 

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2018 - 2023 The Seattle Collegian