Fifth annual Drag Show to feature some tradition, new elements

There will be some gender-bending Friday night at the Campus Activities Center Theater.

The fifth annual Wichita State Drag Show begins at 8 p.m. Friday. It is co-sponsored by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Spectrum: LGBTQ & Allies and Student Involvement. The show is free to students with Shocker ID and costs $10 for the general public, cash or check only.

The show is part of ODI’s “Gaypril,” a series of events throughout the month dedicated to educating and raising awareness about the LGBT community.

As with past drag shows, Divinity Masters will host the show, with Shangela Laquifa Wadley acting as emcee. Wadley has starred on RuPaul’s “Drag Race” TV show.

Danielle Johnson, program coordinator for ODI, said the Drag Show is one of the better WSU traditions.

“It will be a great show,” she said. “It’ll be uncensored; it’ll be very college appropriate.”

Johnson said some local favorite drag performers will perform, including Brown Sugar, Audrey McQueen and Ladies Man.

In addition to being an entertainment venue, the show also serves as a place for education, Johnson said. She said it is important to understand the difference between transgender people and those who simply crossdress.

Transgender people are people whose gender identity and expression do not match their biological sex, which is assigned at birth, Johnson said. People who crossdress are not necessarily gay or lesbian, Johnson said, and may simply enjoy crossdressing. In addition, some of the performers in the Drag Show are simply entertainers.

“They do the full makeup, they do the outfits and everything, but it is a profession for them,” Johnson said. “They work hard, they put a lot of work into the music and it’s just the pure entertainment of it all.”

She added that the drag performers are not necessarily part of the LGBT community.

“I feel like most of the drag queens I know are a part of the LGBT community,” she said. “But, there are some people who just like to perform as an entertainer and that’s just what they do — performing theatrically.”

Johnson said not avoiding some of the traditions — having Divinity Masters host, for instance — and adding some new elements — Wadley serving as emcee — is what makes this year’s show special.

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