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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, April 4 2014 - Volume 42 Issue 14
Dina Martina opening night
Arts & Entertainment
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Dina Martina opening night

by Shaun Knittel - SGN Associate Editor

It's been 25 years since Grady West introduced the world to tragic singer, horrible dancer and camel toe-plagued drag character Dina Martina at Seattle's Center on Contemporary Art in 1989. These days Dina Martina is older, pudgier, and - would you believe it? - funnier than ever!

Seattle Gay News attended the opening night of Dina Martina's Greatest Videos Ever (and MORE!) on March 28 at Re-Bar (1114 Howell St.) with the feeling that we might just see the same-old, same old; I mean, after all, most 'best of' shows are the hits and then a little bit of this (snore) and a little bit of that (bore). But Dina Martina is anything but predictable, and although we've seen the videos before (who hasn't seen the hilarious Dina Martina Bryman Medical College commercials?), the truth is Dina is so good at what she does, you laugh just as hard as the first time you saw them. As it turns out, Dina Martina has one hell of a shelf life.

And the more than 100 people that came to watch the drag songstress do her thing on Friday would agree. (Make sure you buy tickets at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/546683 as soon as possible because her shows often sell out). The applause was so loud and the cheers so genuine, that Dina Martina returned to the stage for an encore. That certainly won't be surprising news for any hardcore Dina fan; but the fact that this drag queen, who sings bad on purpose and screws up the lyrics to iconic songs (once again, on purpose) can still achieve a standing ovation and cheers from the crowd to perform an encore, is pretty telling of just how good Dina Martina really is.

It's not easy reviewing a Dina Martina show without giving away the good stuff. The jokes are timed so well, and done so suddenly (while other times the punch lines seem to reach right out and punch you) that I don't ever want to ruin it for our readers. Such is the case with this review. All I can say is that the videos that Dina chose to showcase in this 'best of' edition of Dina Martina's annual spring show in Seattle, are all really very good. It is a nice walk down memory lane with Dina over the years. Even though she is a drag character, a lot of people feel like they know her personally; again, a testament to just how good of an entertainer Dina Martina is.

The show, just as the title implies, is not just video footage with Dina Martina chatter. She does sing a few songs, tells a lot of jokes, and is just absolutely amazing. You simply cannot go to a Dina Martina show and leave in a bad mood. It's funny. You know Dina's character is somewhat of a loser. She pronounces words incorrectly, is self-deprecating, and doesn't really understand the world at large. But you root for her, you identify with her (on some level), and you just feel damn good whenever Dina is up there doing her thing. Do not miss this show, dear reader! Go get some happy at Re-Bar with Dina Martina and you won't regret it!

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Dina Martina opening night
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