What are the salient features of Fabulousness? Irony. Tragic history. Defiance. Gender-fuck. Glitter. Drama. It is not butch. It is not hot. The cathexis surrounding Fabulousness is not necessarily erotic. The Fabulous is not delimited by age or beauty. Style has a dialectical relationship to physical reality. The body is the Real. Style is Theater. The raw materials are reworked into illusion. For style to be truly fabulous, one must completely triumph over tragedy, age, physical insufficiencies—and just as importantly, one’s audiences must be made aware of the degree of transcendence, of triumph; must see both the triumph and that over which the triumph has been made. (In this the magic of the Fabulous is precisely the magic of the theater. The wires show. The illusion is always incomplete, inadequate; the work behind the magic is meant to be appreciated.)
Tony Kushner, “Foreword: Notes Toward a Theater of the Fabulous.”
In Clum, John, Ed. Staging Gay Lives. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1996.