Rumi Missabu (picture above by Christelle de Castro) is one of the few surviving members of San Francisco’s gender-bending performance groupe The Cockettes. Fans of the troupe will know her especially from her hilarious performance as the “rebellious elevator girl” Maxine in the legendary Cockette movie “Elevator Girls in Bondage” from 1972 (picture (c) David Wise) – the film was re-released on DVD two years ago and can be ordered directly from Rumi by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org ($27.95 incl. shipping/handling).
Today the Oakland based artist owns a huge archive of the group’s work and aside from her job as the official Cockettes archivist is still a very active performer: In 2009 she has been starring in the successful stage production “Pearls over Shang-Hai” at the Hypnodrome Theatre, San Francisco, in which she played the “Madame Gin Sling” (see video below by Ben Wa). She has also recently appeared in couple of independent movies such as “The Glitter Emergency” by Paul Festa, “Uncle Bob” by Robert Oppel and the Cockettes documentary “Children of the Cockettes” by Ben Wa.
In an interview with Opening Ceremony which was published on their website just a few days ago, Rumi has also announced that she will be touring New York this October, supported by artists such as Jean Franco and French singer François Chaignaud. The interview also features a couple of really nice pictures of the artist from the last few years, so go check it out.