Betty Who performs in the middle of the audience at The Anthem on March 10, 2023. (Photo by Katherine Gaines)
Betty Who always wanted to be a pop star — and the truth is that she was one the second she stepped on stage and sang in front of people. She possesses something that can’t be bought or learned — a true passion for performing. At her recent big DC show at The Anthem, she exuded such absolute uninhibited joy that it was impossible not to be drawn to her.
On March 10 at The Anthem, the night of badass femmes started off with Shea Coulee. She strutted around looking flawless and fabulous in fuchsia. It was great to see one of the most polished and talented stars from Ru Paul’s Drag Race get a chance to perform her original music for a whole new audience. Next up, Slayyyter provided an upbeat and fun set, bopping around stage while trying to prevent a wardrobe malfunction. She was in good spirits despite technical difficulties and had no trouble keeping the crowd’s attention.
Betty Who burst out with some of her most danceable numbers from her recent album Big and wowed us with her moves. “She Can Dance” is a fact, not just a song title. She then sat at the keyboard for the album’s title track, a beautiful homage to loving who you are. If Betty Who and LIzzo ever performed together, there would probably be some sort of supernova of self acceptance and laughter.
Watch the official music video for “She Can Dance” by Betty Who on YouTube:
There was a touching moment when Betty sang a chorus of “Marry Me,” which wasn’t on the setlist, a capella, after seeing a fan hold up a sign saying they used it in their proposal. (SHE SAID YES!) The entire room screamed their approval. Despite the venues being significantly larger than the previous time she toured (The Anthem was her biggest show to date!) she continued her tradition of walking out into the center of her audience with her guitar to play “Wanna Be” and truly connect with her fans. She was lit only by the cell phone flashlights of those surrounding her — yet her smile was visible from the furthest spot in the venue.
The main set closed with older hits “High Society” and adopted pride anthem “Somebody Loves You.” The room lit up in rainbow colors and everyone sang along. The night finally ended with her blissfully sweet cover of Donna Lewis’ “I Love You Always Forever” and everyone left feeling a little more loved than when they came in.
Here are some photos of openers Shea Coulee and Slayyyter and headliner Betty Who performing at The Anthem on March 10, 2023. All pictures copyright and courtesy of Katherine Gaines (ambienteye.com).