Drag queens rock audience in Cartwright Hall

Amy Cooknick

Four of Ohio’s hottest drag queens danced, shimmied and flirted their way around Cartwright Hall Auditorium Thursday night to a full house of 700 students.

Drag queen Brionna Brooks introduced the show, announcing her fellow drag queens as music pulsed through speakers cranked all the way up, and the audience screamed.

“Ladies and gentlemen, for those of you that have never been to a female impersonating show, tipping is allowed,” Brooks said. “Feel free to dig deep into your pockets. I’m sure if this is your first time here, you’re going to find us again. It’s addicting. It’s a good time.”

That good time began with show hostess Danyel Vazquez dancing and lip-syncing to Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way.” Vazquez, dressed in a silver, futuristic gown complete with twinkling lights, made her way from the stage to the audience, where she ruffled hair, accepted tips and got very close to audience members.

Andrew Weber, senior air traffic control and aeronautics major, said the audience interaction was one of his favorite parts of the show.

“It’s always really exciting to see all the new people and to see all the awkward straight people that are here,” Weber said. “Just kind of seeing how they get to experience something new.”

Weber, who was president of Kent Interhall Council last academic year, said this is the third drag show he has been to.

“They’re all just so hilarious, and it’s just so much fun to come and watch and listen,” Weber said. “The vulgarity is just another priceless thing. It was all fun.”

Vazquez was followed by Jessica Love, Erica Martinez and Brooks, who each performed to her own song.

At intermission, Vazquez selected eight audience members to participate in a dance-off to the song “Milkshake.”

She and the other drag queens eliminated dancers until they were able to crown the top two.

The show ended after a wardrobe change for all the queens, each of who performed a second time.

“I loved the show,” said Austin Shuman, freshman theatre studies major. “I’m part of a fraternity called Delta Lambda Phi, and my Big is a drag queen. He’s actually trying to get me into being a drag queen, so seeing everyone up there and seeing how much fun they had was a blast.”

Krystal Torres, freshman fashion design major, said the show was entertaining.


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“It was very different than most shows I’ve seen,” Torres said. “I’ve never been to a drag show. They did an awesome job with costumes.”

Even after the dancing, Vazquez and Brooks kept the audience laughing as they brought audience members on stage for different scenarios and even poked fun at Henry Herder the cow, who helped rile the audience.

Danielle Melidona, vice president of KIC, said KIC was happy with the show.

“It went really well,” Melidona said. “The drag queens did even more with the audience than I expected them to. Kent Interhall Council has worked with these four for the past four drag shows now, and everyone really enjoys them.”

Contact Amy Cooknick at [email protected].