Vicki Marlane (1934-2011) was a critically acclaimed drag performer and transgender woman who worked in San Francisco. Marlane’s
numerous awards and the efforts of various LGBT organizations to rename a block of Turk Street after Marlane underscore her
importance to these communities.
Born on September 5, 1934, in Crookston, Minnesota, Marlane left her family’s farm after she began performing at a Minnesota
gay bar at age 16. In the 1950s and 1960s, she toured nationally in circus sideshows, then with female impersonator troupes.
In 1966, Marlane moved to, and performed widely in, San Francisco. In the 1980s, Marlane transitioned and moved to San Diego.
Returning to the San Francisco drag scene in 1998, Marlane earned critical acclaim as “The Lady with the Liquid Spine” while
performing at Aunt Charlie’s Lounge. Marlane continued to perform at Imperial and Ducal Court events, was Grand Marshal of
the 2003 San Francisco Pride Parade, and was the subject of the documentary Forever’s Gonna Start Tonight (2009). She died
July 5, 2011 of AIDS-related complications.
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