We can't wait for Friday, March 24, at 8pm, when one of our favorite TV shows, RuPaul's Drag Race, kicks off its ninth season with a special guest appearance from Lady Gaga! A competition to crown the best in drag, RuPaul's Drag Race is like The X Factor and Project Runway rolled into one (for the first season ever, the show will air on VH1, as opposed to Logo). While we may meet the queens in TV land, we know that the stage is their natural habitat. Accordingly, here are seven (likely and unlikely) places you can catch your favorite Drag Racers live and in person. While they're not appearing eight times a week on Broadway (yet), these ladies are working tirelessly to make theater everywhere:
1. 42nd Street
I know what you're thinking, but no: They're inside a nightclub that just happens to be on that busiest of crosstown Manhattan thoroughfares. In fact, there is no better place to catch a Drag Racer in New York than the Laurie Beechman Theatre. Latrice Royale, Stacy Layne Matthews, Courtney Act, Jinkx Monsoon, and Sharon Needles are all scheduled to perform there this year, with unscheduled shows by Katya, Mimi Imfurst, Robbie Turner, and Alaska in the works. Producer Ron Lasko has kept New York's drag fans gagging for the last several years with a never-ending parade of talent at the Beechman — he's basically the David Merrick of drag.
2. A Hawaiian Gay Bar
A relatively new addition to the Honolulu gay scene, Scarlet has been attracting big talent to its little island, with recent shows by Kim Chi and Ben DeLaCreme. Hawaiians and tourists alike will want to mark their calendars for the arrival of the reigning queen of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars: Alaska Thunderf*ck 5000. You can catch Alaska in Hawaii on April 9, and you can bet she'll bring the T about this season's crop of Drag Racers.
3. In the Rink
Did you know that season 6 contestant Milk is a very talented figure skater? Now you do. Milk has appeared at the rinks in Bryant Park and Chelsea Piers, so we imagine a touring ice spectacular is soon to follow. If anyone could bring back the Ice Capades, it would be Milk.
4. The World's Biggest Drag Convention
This is your best bet to catch all of your favorite queens in one place. Mama Ru and her legendary children will take over the Los Angeles Convention Center on April 29 and 30 for RuPaul's DragCon. Acid Betty, Delta Work, Jiggly Caliente, and Raja are among the over 100 performers and drag personalities scheduled to descend on Los Angeles for one star-spangled weekend. This is the grand conclave of the drag world.
5. Ten Minutes From the San Diego Zoo
Urban MO's Bar & Grill of San Diego boasts an extensive menu of burgers and frou-frou beverages. "We believe that cocktail glasses should be adorned with plastic farm animals," MO's website proudly proclaims. Where there are silly cocktails, drag queens can't be far behind: Urban MO's is home to the famed Dreamgirls Revue, home base for All Stars season 1 winner Chad Michaels, whose Cher impersonation knows no equal. Recent guests have included Pandora Boxx and Gia Gunn. This is dinner theater par excellence.
6. An Auditorium Named after the 11th President of the United States
The queens of comedy will reign at the James K. Polk Theater of Nashville, Tennessee. April 15 brings Haters Roast — The Shady Tour, a comedy revue featuring Trixie Mattel, Ginger Minj, Latrice Royale, Bob the Drag Queen, and perhaps the shadiest queen of them all: Phi Phi O'Hara. Then on June 4, Bianca del Rio sweeps into town with her Not Today Satan tour. Were he alive today, President Polk certainly wouldn't need a four-point plan to convince people to come out for these sure-to-be hilarious comedy events.
7. A Slow Boat to Russia
Fans of RuPaul's Drag Race will be familiar with frequent sponsor AlandChuck.travel. This September, the boutique gay travel agency will embark on its most ambitious project to date: Drag Stars at Sea – 'From Russia – With Love.' This Baltic cruise departs from Hamburg and takes an armada of drag queens to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Tallinn, and finally…St. Petersburg. Al and Chuck have previously hosted drag cruises with Alaska, Lady Bunny, Detox, and Manila Luzon (among many others). Talent has not yet been confirmed, but we have a sinking suspicion that Katya will be aboard.
- Laurie Beechman Theatre
- RuPaul's Drag Race
- Ben DeLaCreme
- Delta Work
- Jiggly Caliente
- Gia Gunn
- Ron Lasko
- Stacy Layne Matthews
- Trixie Mattel
- Latrice Royale
- Kim Chi
- Pandora Boxx
- Ginger Minj
- Sharon Needles
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