“God is a Scottish Drag Queen II,” now playing at “Le Cabaret du Mile-End” as part of the “Montreal Fringe Festival,” is an evening of religious and social commentary, delivered by delightfully amiable actor, Mike Delamont. As the title suggests, Delamont portrays “God” as a tough-talking, no-nonsense Scottish lady. Clad in a floral ensemble – referred to as a “Power Suit” – Delamont resembles a 1980’s substitute teacher.
Unlike most “edgy” shock-comics, Delamont understands that in order to communicate controversial or unpleasant truths, the performer must first connect with the audience. From the moment Delamont hits the stage and asks for “some good St. Viateur bagels” in lieu of “our daily bread,” the local crowd is “devotedly” on God’s side.
Throughout the performance, Delamont interacts with the audience, as he moves barefoot across the stage. At one point, he offers a water bottle to a woman in the front row, “Do you want some wine?” Though the topics are primarily religious, Delamont delivers God’s wrath to big business as well. The off-color comments are passionately indignant, tempered with a gleefully biting wit.
As explanation for Her holy commandments during the time of the Old Testament, God blithely confides, “I had a drinking problem back them.” In fact, God dismisses Her most eminent decrees as nothing more than inebriated pranks.
On the topic of Churches, God admonishes the crowd. “I won’t talk about priests. There’s nothing funny about pedophiles. (pause) But wait till they get Upstairs – then it will be hi-la-ri-ous!”
As his name suggests, Delamont is not Scottish – in fact, he resides in Victoria, having grown up in a large Italian family in the Canadian Rockies. Though he has won awards across the world, he retains a fondness for his native country. When the audience is hushed by one of his remarks, he bursts out laughing. “I am offended because somebody might be offended – that is so Canadian!” Delamont loves Montreal and its hodgepodge of festivals as well. “It’s hard to tell if you’re on a street or in a festival. Is this an aggressive crack head or a street performer coming at me?”
Last January, Delamont announced his engagement to the woman of his dreams. On his blog, he writes, “Until now all of my relationships have been the same. They all started with ‘Oh my God! You are SO funny’ and ended with ‘Not EVERYTHING has to be a joke you know.’” Though blissfully in love, he acknowledges the challenges of a touring performer. “Now that I am older and have met that special somebody, it’s very difficult to walk out the door. And a part of me knows that it will only get harder.”
Montreal audiences should run to see the hi-la-ri-ous “God is a Scottish Drag Queen II,” which has a return engagement this summer, at the city’s “Just for Laughs” festival. After all, one day God may decide to become a stay-at-home Wife.