Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Slaying the Stage In Seattle U’s 18th Annual Drag Show

Sean Alexander
Sean Alexander

Between gowns dripping with jewels, thrilling dance routines, and delightfully varied lip sync performances from professional drag queens and audience volunteers alike, the night kept audience members at the edge of their seats. May 21, Seattle University’s 18th Annual Drag Show, “Slay O’ Goddess & Drag Me to Hades,” hosted by the Triangle Club, transformed the Campion Ballroom into a glittering showcase of resplendent queer expression. 

Seattle U’s Fashion Club (FCSU) was featured at the event, with two runways showcasing original clothing designs. Hypnotic music and flashing lights transported the audience to the whimsical “Bugland,” where green and purple patchwork, outstretched fabric wings, and draping chainmail created glamorous interpretations of various bugs. 

Ian Van Eeuwen, a third-year design major and graphic designer for FCSU, values having space for students to freely explore their creative interests. 

“Fashion Club is a very open space where people can kind of do whatever they want; they do a good job being open to everyone’s ideas,” Van Eeuwen said. 

Abigail Fisher, third-year sociology major and designer for FCSU, is excited about the opportunity for the club’s first runway.

Sean Alexander

“I know that there used to be a Fashion Club, but we are a newly established club, so we had not done anything like this before,” Fisher said.

In addition to professional performers, both the drag show and runway showed off the artistry of Seattle U students, with the show being several of the models’ and queens’ first time on stage. 

The event was hosted by drag queen and Seattle U alumna Isabella L. Richards, who introduced each performer with both glowing praise and playfully catty remarks. The queens had a variety of styles that made use of the surrounded stage, perfect for gallivanting through the audience and interacting with enthusiastic viewers.

Camryn Mata, a third-year English and creative writing major and executive treasurer of the Triangle Club, was thrilled to see the event come together after meticulous planning. 

“Things that we planned months ago were finally taken into fruition, especially with hiring the drag queens and actually seeing them perform. You can see like all the performances they do elsewhere, but it’s a different experience entirely to actually watch them in person, talk with them in person,” Mata said.

The Triangle Club provides an inclusive community and support for queer students at SU through both on and off-campus resources. The annual drag show honors drag as an important part of queer history and culture, and is one of the club’s most popular events. 

Sean Alexander

Maya Walthall, a second-year political science major and president of the Triangle Club, appreciates that the club provides a supportive environment, and feels grateful to be involved in events that uplift the queer community.

“For me, having a queer club could help me find the safe space that I couldn’t find in other places,” Walthall said.

Drag has always gone beyond entertainment, and been a form of self-expression and resistance to oppression faced by the queer community. However, bills introduced across the US have targeted drag this past year, placing restrictions on or outright banning drag performance. 

Mata is glad that drag is more accepted today, but sees it as an important form of empowerment and visibility in the wake of legislative attacks on the queer community

“The history of drag performances has always been a rebellion in itself,” Mata said. “Whether it’s student-run, something professionally made, or even something that’s performed in a dingy basement, it still proves that we’re still here, and your laws are not going to stop us from having fun and celebrating gender expression.”

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Keagen Brooks-Torres, Arts & Entertainment Editor

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