As reported by The New York Daily News, parents and students at a talent show for Manhattan public schools on May 25 watched a “surprise” performance from Public School 96 Parent Teacher Association President Frankie Quinones, in which the PTA president, dressed in full-blown drag queen attire, grinded the floor of the stage, spread his legs open to the crowd and rolled around in a sexually suggestive manner while lip-synching a 1980’s song.
“People were horrified,” said one parent of a fifth-grader who attended the show, Raquel Morales. “It looked like a nightclub performance. I’ve been asking for an apology from the district for the last week, and they’ve been ignoring it.”
Morales estimates that there were 200 families attending the talent show, which also featured writing and art exhibits from students across the district.
Parents tell the NYDN that District 4 Superintendent Alexandra Estrella “introduced the final act of the night, billed on the event flyer as a ‘Special Surprise Performance!'” That’s when Quinones hit the stage for the raunchy drag performance:
At that moment, Quinones, who parents said performs in drag clubs around the city, took the stage in a sparkly black dress and pumps and began to shake his hips as a slinky Iris Chacón mambo blared from the public address system.
Parents said families’ laughter turned to disbelief and then dismay as Quinones opened his mouth and exercised his tongue in a suggestive manner while lip-syncing the Chacón number.
Then he dropped to the ground and began to writhe on floor. He rolled onto his back, spread his long legs and flashed his white underwear to the shrinking crowd.
Morales says her son, who is only 10 years of age, “was uncomfortably surprised by what he saw.”
“I saw her doing things like sticking her legs out and shaking her bottom and it felt weird,” said the 10-year-old. “I don’t know why they would do that for an elementary school.”
Another parent, who remained anonymous for fear of backlash, said she blamed Estrella, who introduced the drag performer onto stage, and David Pretto, the principal of PS 96.
“I left the show the minute he started sticking his tongue out. I had my children with me and I wasn’t going to allow them to see that,” said the mother. “It was a very poor presentation of Iris Chacón, anyway. She was not like that.”
“Education Department spokesman Michael Aciman said school officials haven’t faced disciplinary action over the mini drag show,” notes the NYDN.
“The performance was inappropriate and the school has spoken with the parent,” he said.