Hector Xtravaganza, the ‘Grandfather’ of the House of Xtravaganaza, has died aged 60. A pioneer of new New York ballroom scene, he featured in the cult 1990 documentary, Paris is Burning.
His death was announced via the House of Extravaganza’s Facebook page last night.
‘It is with profound sadness the House of Xtravaganza family announce the passing of our beloved Grandfather Hector.
‘He was a friend to everyone he met, a source of inspiration for all who knew him, and a cornerstone of our House family. Arrangements for a celebration of Hector’s life will be shared in the coming days.’
No cause of death has been revealed.
Paris Is Burning
Paris Is Burning, directed by Jenni Livingston, documented the queer ballroom scene in late 80s New York. The seminal movie met with instant critical acclaim and brought global attention to the scene and its participants. The majority of them came from Latin and black queer communities.
Several of those who featured in the documentary died young, including Venus Xravaganza (in 1988) and Angie Xtravaganza (in 1993).
Hector Xtravaganza was a founding member of the House in 1982. He later legally changed his name to Xtravaganza. Producer Ryan Murphy used him as a consultant on Pose – his TV series set on the ballroom scene.
RuPaul and Cox lead tributes
Among those to pay tribute to Hector was Laverne Cox, who simply tweeted ‘RIP’.
RuPaul tweeted, ‘Hector Xtravaganza Has Left For Paris.’
Steven Canals, co-creator and an executive producer of Pose, called Hector an ‘icon … devoted friend & a beloved member of the #PoseFX family. He was a show consultant, but more than that a loyal Abuelo to all.’
In a later tweet, Canals said, ‘Some you meet & make a soul connection. When I met Hector Xtravaganza I called him Abuelo. He embraced me & said, “I have a new grandson.” I didn’t know my grandfathers so having him meant the world. His last text to me was “I’m proud of you.” I’m proud of you too.’
DJ and broadcaster Larry Flick said, ‘Hector Xtravaganza, a legend of the ballroom world and one of the founding members of the House of Xtravaganza, has died. He was a dear, dear person and a tireless activist in the fight against AIDS. His love and passion for life was a true inspiration. #RIP’
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