In ballroom, members also known as “kids” of competing houses grace the runway serving their best moves and faces to earn the admiration and respect of the crowd and judges. Ballroom is a competitive but loving culture of mostly Black and brown queer people looking to express themselves freely and be a part of a community that shares their passion. The foundation of ballroom culture as we know it today was cultivated by Crystal LaBeija and fortified by other black and Latinx trans women such as Dorian Corey, Paris Dupree, Angie Xtravaganza and Pepper LaBeija – the pioneering foremothers of the ballroom scene.
In a time where the LGBTQIA+ community has had to fight for a world that accepts their love and bodies as natural, many have found safe havens within the culture’s ‘houses’ – groups of people who unite under a common last name and refer to each other as chosen family who compete in ballroom as a house, but more importantly walk through life beyond ballroom together. The houses of ball culture are the ultimate support system. CASSIUS’ ‘Home Is Where The House Is’, is a two-part story that follows a father and a mother of two different houses. We go behind the scenes to illustrate the bonds that make a house a family in a way we rarely see in media.
In this second video, we meet Yusef Mugler, the legendary overall father of the long-standing House of Miyake Mugler, a ball culture legend and celebrity hairstylist who’s influenced the careers and lives of many. We peek into a day in his life as a fashion lover, hairstylist, and overall father and see first hand how he balances creativity and expertise to mentor both his kids and his clients. We hear about how growing up in a family of 20+ kids with a loving, supportive mother and strong, ambitious father has shaped who he is today.
‘Home is Where The House Is’ paints a modern picture of what it means to build a strong foundation and lasting legacy as a trans mother figure and queer father figure in ballroom. Each video offers a raw and intimate introduction to each parent’s personal histories. We journey with them to reveal layers of their stories and trace how their childhoods shape their ballroom parenting styles. There’s no shortage of genuine stories that highlight ‘family’ within the LGBTQ+ community. ‘Home is Where The House Is’ not only redefines home but reminds us that the magic of love is alive at the center of any strong family, no matter gender race or orientation.