Credit: Allison Ziemba

Salonathon has always felt like an artistic sanctuary, a safe place to worship and embrace the creative spirit, and the final event last Monday in the hallowed, sparkly halls of Beauty Bar was no different. The experience felt especially religious in part because of actual references to church, starting with a story from Jasmine Henri Jordan about growing up Baptist and ending with a performance by Bea Cordelia that involved washing the feet of participants and felt straight out of a queer, inclusive Bible.

The performances were, as they always are, genre-defying and inspiring. But some of the most reverent moments happened offstage: the curators watching the audience watch each artist with a warm glow on their face, the new friends being made at the manicure station, even the conversations in the bathrooms contained some of the 14-hour celebration’s most beautiful moments. The weekly shows at Beauty Bar may be gone, but Salonathon & On & On & On proved that the spirit of the performances will live on outside those walls.