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Mama Tits Makes Her Provincetown Debut

by Steve Desroches

On a stifling hot day in late July Brian Peters sweeps into the Post Office Café full of diners enjoying lunch and the air conditioning. It’s a hot one, and much of the lunch crowd is looking out the window with apprehension at the thought of going back out under the blistering sun and thick humidity. But they smile when they see Peters. He’s tall, really tall, with iridescent hair, one pink flamingo earring dangling from his left ear with clanking bangles up and down his rights arm, and wearing a sparkly pink tank top covered with cartoon images of him as Mama Tits, his drag persona who made a home upstairs at the Cabaret for the summer. And he has an irresistible smile, a big one. Everything with Mama Tits is big. Really big. It’s not often you see a seven-foot drag queen in heels, even in Provincetown.

Mama Tits didn’t just make quite the entrance that day in the Café, but also to Provincetown, as she and her husband sashayed across the USA to get here. Hailing from Seattle, Mama Tits is the toast of the town in Puerto Vallarta, the Mexican resort city that is the closest rival, in terms of a drag scene, to Provincetown. Her reputation for uplifting shows with no filter drifted north, so by the time it was announced she was coming to town it was met with a chorus of “what took her so long.” So she packed up the car and, after a pit stop for a gig in Boise, Idaho, for the Fourth of July, drove across the country, arriving in Provincetown about three weeks later.

With the country mired in a red state/blue state cold civil war, it seems a road trip cross country would be a fascinating glimpse into these disunited states. What have we become as a nation? Do we even recognize each other any more? And how would an out and proud gay man driving through states like Utah, Nebraska, and Kansas with his husband on his way to Provincetown for a summer run of drag shows be received? Visions of Too Wong Foo… meets Deliverance might come to mind. But all Mama Tits found was kindness…for the most part…and landed on the Cape tip full of hope.

“It was one of the most amazing experiences,” says Peters. “Being in Mexico for most of the year and with the current political situation, I had such worries about America.  But the trip across country rejuvenated my love for our country and reminded me that there is still a lot to fight for. Everywhere we went people were so kind to us. We didn’t de-gay at all. I was just myself and they were great. It was, ‘What can I get you, hon?’ and ‘How may I help you?’ Everywhere but Wagon Wheel, Colorado, where a man said ‘Boy, you better get going. There’s nothing for you here.’ So we hopped in the car and left, but everywhere else was great.”

Peters began his la vie en drag while a teenager in Nampa, Idaho, and kept it as a hobby until he was 24 and joined the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, the Abbey of St. Joan in Seattle. The drag-based community service organization changed his life. Through hard work and focus he became part of a new wave of drag performers in Seattle alongside BenDeLaCreme, Jinkx Monsoon, and Robbie Turner, a city already bursting with drag talents before them like Dina Martina and Jackie Hell. Mama Tits got a national boost when a video of her confronting anti-gay protestors at Seattle Pride went viral in 2014, attracting the attention of Canadian drag darling Miss Conception. On a swing through Seattle, Miss Conception looked up Mama Tits, eventually helping her get a gig in Puerto Vallarta. And now the two are on the same PV to Ptown circuit as they embrace an ethos of paying it forward in the drag community by helping each other rather than undercutting. Peters now lives in and performs at Act II Stages in Puerto Vallarta from November through May, but coming to Provincetown was always THE goal.

“We are striving to be queer wise with shows the Mexican version of this here,” says Peters. “We call PV ‘Provincetown South.’ But Provincetown is the pinnacle of queer cabaret. It’s here. To be embraced not just by the locals, but by the other queens and especially by audiences, it just makes you feel really, really good.”

With almost two weeks under her belt Mama Tits is off and running for sure with her show Big & Loud. It’s funny and tender, sweet and raunchy. She never leaves the stage from beginning to end as she shimmers and shines her way through this comedic cabaret show, belting out tune after tune. She’s a quick study as she confirms that no matter where in the world you perform there is no place like Provincetown. It has its own rules, quirks, and rhythms. And then there’s the barking, the age-old, boardwalk-style, hurry-hurry-get-your-tickets sales pitch that is a necessity here. Reaching out on the street is how you get an audience, that’s the first lesson she’s learned.

The second lesson she’s learned is that in Provincetown you have to be prepared for the unexpected as audiences vary drastically nightly and on any night can be wild. In fact, speaking of barking, on a Tuesday night, Mama Tits had three dogs in the audience. She approved it when it was promised they’d be good, but when she hit a comedic high note, the dogs began to howl like back-up singers. She rolled with it, making it one of the biggest laughs of the night.

The third lesson she already knew and that is in the face of intense competition from other drag performers respond with grace and kindness, as jealousy will take you down. Focus on craft as pretty much everything else is just noise.

“You have to put in the work,” says Peters. “You have to search your soul. You have to go all in. You have to learn the difference between commanding attention and demanding attention. And when that jealousy creeps in, don’t get jealous, get inspired. Let all of this talent here uplift you.”

Mama Tits presents Big & Loud at the Post Office Cabaret, 303 Commercial St., Provincetown, at 7 p.m Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday through September 8. Tickets ($30/$40) are available at the box office and online at For more information call 508.487.0006.

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Ginger Mountain

Ginger Mountain (MS Communications Media, BA Fine Arts/Teaching Certification K-12) has been part of the graphic design team at Provincetown Magazine since 2008. Ginger has worked as a creative director, individual contractor, and freelance designer with clients representing many areas —business software, consumer products, professional services, entertainment, and network hardware to name just a few — providing creative layout and development of a wide range of print media content. Her clients ranged from small local businesses to large corporations and Fortune 500 companies, from New Hampshire to Georgia

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