Directed by Audrey Jean-Baptiste
47 min | 2019 | French Guiana
Presented in French with English subtitles.
The ball scene, voguing, drag and its vernacular have slowly but surely become a part of mainstream culture. It’s hard to go anywhere in queer spaces without hearing someone yell “Yas Queen!” or “Werk!” Imagine, however, being in an environment where it was dangerous for a man to even wear tight clothes or grab a drink in a dainty way. Now imagine feeling like the only queer person in the entire country.
After establishing themself in the NYC ballroom scene, Lasseindra Ninja has come back to their hometown of Cayenne, French Guiana. From ballet classes as a child and finding fame on the ballroom stage they are now back to open the doors of self-expression for the small community of queer youth there. Through the art of vogue fem, Lasseindra makes these young people confront their fears by moving their hips and flicking their wrists with all the confidence and ferocity they can muster. Lasseindra is a strict teacher and has no time for any student who is not there to break out of their shell and find their inner fierceness. Self confidence, visibility and pride are all things Lasseindra is trying to instill in their students through a form of art that gave them a voice. But, just like the audience, what they most want is for everyone to just “Have fun and let go.”
– James Long
Official Selection: 2019 Frameline