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In View: "Deja Vu"

As drag queens go, count Brandon Christensen among the more demure. "I'm a pretty shy queen," said Christensen, who regularly performs as Deja Vu in drag shows at area bars. With his thigh-high faux leather boots, glamour-girl outfit, stylish wig...

In View: Deja Vu
As drag queens go, count Brandon Christensen among the more demure. "I'm a pretty shy queen," said Christensen, who regularly performs as Deja Vu in drag shows at area bars. Ann Arbor Miller

As drag queens go, count Brandon Christensen among the more demure.

"I'm a pretty shy queen," said Christensen, who regularly performs as Deja Vu in drag shows at area bars.

With his thigh-high faux leather boots, glamour-girl outfit, stylish wig and a face painted like a movie star's, the 29-year-old Fargo man could easily be mistaken for a woman at first blush.

It doesn't hurt that Christensen has a naturally petite frame, a finesse for feminine gesture and a knack for theatrical makeup. Deja Vu is quite striking.

Christensen was introduced to live drag several years ago at the invitation of a friend. He traveled from Minot to Grand Forks to attend his first show.

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"I was just fascinated by it," said Christensen, who was active in high school and college theater.

A few years later, Christensen's fascination turned into exploration. His first attempt at doing drag was "horribly tragic."

"The spotlight blinded me, and I forgot my words," he said.

Despite that experience, Christensen tried again. He sought to craft a drag persona - a stage character that drew on his obsession with the rock star Pink and his love of live theater.

While being a drag queen in Fargo-Moorhead isn't a full-time occupation, it certainly is an expensive preoccupation. Christensen, who works two part-time jobs and is contemplating cosmetology school, relies on tips from patrons to help supplement Deja Vu's ever-growing wardrobe, wig collection and cosmetic arsenal.

"It's grown to be such a part of me," said Christensen. "I'm sure it's going to reach a point where I'm getting a little old for this, but I don't see it anytime in my near future."

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If you go

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- What: Drag show

- When: Around 10 p.m. March 13

- Where: The I-BEAM, 1021 Center Ave., Moorhead

- Info: Admission is $7 per person. Ages 21 and older only. Doors open at 8 p.m. The show's theme for the night is Hollywood and Broadway, with a tribute to "Mamma Mia!" Tables are not reserved and are "first come gets the best table." For more information, visit www.theibeam.com .

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"In View" is a photo column by Fargo-based photojournalist Ann Arbor Miller focusing on everyday people and places in our community. Look for it Mondays in The Forum.

To suggest future column ideas, e-mail annarbormiller [at] gmail [dot] com

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