The Music Diva Spectacle (Book)

Camp, Female Performers and Queer Audiences in the Arena Tour Show

This book looks at contemporary popular music divas, their live and recorded performances, and the perceived relationship these artists have with queer audiences. By looking into the theatrics of the diva tour show, it examines and theorizes the production and reception of camp as a queer praxis that feeds the diva-queer culture relationship.

Category: Cultural Studies, Music


This original new book has a unique focus on diva camp as popular music praxis. The author analyses case studies of diva concert tour shows in order to present a performance studies reading of camp, the culture-sharing process of production, and audience reception. Detailed case studies include contemporary stars Madonna, Kylie, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and a look at audience drag.

The book contains detailed descriptions of artists’ performances, along with the analysis of exciting and popular contemporary performers. The emphasis on camp is particularly interesting, as thinking about queerness has pushed camp into the background in recent years. This is an interesting and exciting revival of the question of camp in contemporary queer performance.

The book considers and investigates the relationship between camp theory as an academic subject and the figure of the diva as one that utilizes and expresses camp in various ways. It seeks to establish how camp is appropriated or owned by the diva and how this impacts on, and is in turn appropriated and owned by, the audience.

Primary readership will be among researchers and educators working in the fields of cultural studies, performance studies, theatre studies, music studies, LGBTQ+ studies, critical race studies, as well as undergraduate students interested in these topics. It will be a useful classroom resource and addition to recommended reading lists.

The Music Diva Spectacle may have interest for more general readers with an interest in the subjects of the case studies, but the main focus is on the academic market.

Constantine Chatzipapatheodoridis, Fulbright alumnus, holds a Ph.D. from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He has published on topics about LGBTQ+ culture, pop culture and performance.



  1. Time Goes by so Slowly: Madonna’s Camp Revivals
  2. LaLaLas and WowWowWows: Approaching Kylie Minogue’s Extravaganzas
  3. We Flawless: Beyoncé’s Politics of Black Camp
  4. Highway Unicorns: Camp Aesthet(h)ics and Utopias in Lady Gaga’s Tours
  5. Dressed for the Ball: Audience Drag in the Arena Space



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