Drag show draws full house

Drag queens and one king performed to a 630-person crowd last Friday



Headliner Pangina Heals performing at the drag show, April 7.

ERIN MULLINS, Evergreen reporter

The 2023 WSU Drag show was so popular, around 200 people were turned away as the room was filled to capacity, said Tessa Baker, who works with the Student Entertainment Board and helped to put on the event.

The drag show was at 9 p.m. April 7 in the Compton Union Building senior ballroom.

“So I would say we probably had about 630 people in that room,” Baker said. “We definitely were expecting a large crowd. We were expecting every seat to be filled. But I personally was not expecting to turn away so many people, not hundreds of people,” Baker said.

Aquasha DeLusty, a local drag queen from TabiKat Productions, hosted the show with Omnia Nova, a drag queen from Honolulu, Hawaii. The headline performer was Pangina Heals, who is a judge in Drag Race Thailand and has competed in Ru Paul’s Drag Race: UK vs the World.

Other performers included the rest of the Tabikat cast: Jazmyn J, Roderick Von Schlong, Faye, and Freedom Rights.

The show started with a humorous back-and-forth between the hosts, ending with a shout-out to the LGBTQ community.

“The rest is queer history, which shall not be erased,” Nova said.

Student performer Kau’i at the drag show, April 7.

WSU student performer Kau’i was the first to the stage, dancing a hula number with a flowing black wrap skirt and her hair in a bun pinned by a flower. Kau’i said that she has been dancing in both Hula and Tahitian dance since the age of 3.

Headliner Pangina Heals walked out to upbeat music, wearing knee-length black boots. Her platinum blonde hair flowed down to her mid-back. Her long-sleeved black bodysuit was bedazzled with glimmering silver gems, and shining silver fringe adorned her hips.

After performing, she collapsed to the floor in exhaustion before answering a few interview questions from DeLusty.

“My favorite thing to do after performing a five-minute number is to just talk,” Heals said sarcastically. “I was focusing on converting oxygen to carbon dioxide.”

Heals, who is from Bangkok, said she spent the first four years of her career performing for free, investing in herself.

“My father has always said if you love what you are doing, that is already the profit in life,” she said. “Happiness and what you enjoy, what you do in life is actually really important.”

Faye performed after Heals, sauntering out with a mountain of voluminous, curly yellow hair and a shimmering black bodysuit with cutouts on the side.

The next performances were by Jazmyn J, Omnia Nova and Roderick Von Schlong, the only drag king. He danced to “Beggin’” by Måneskin. The high-energy performances continued with a reprise by Heals and a few more numbers.

The final act was DeLusty, who performed an emotional number in a floor-length blue gown with a complicated shimmering white updo. In the background, “A Million Dreams” by Pink played.

TabiKat Productions performer Faye at the drag show, April 7.

“They can say, they can say it all sounds crazy. They can say, they can say we’ve lost our minds. See, I don’t care, I don’t care if they call us crazy. Run away to a world that we design,” Pink sang as DeLusty lip-synced and danced to the music.

A few queens said it was one of the best college audiences they had ever seen, Baker said.

After the performances, Nova said that if the audience could walk away with anything that night, she hoped the crowd could see the potential that they all had to live their dreams.

Baker said that every performance at the event was entertaining and crowd engagement was amazing. She said she believes that the drag show will become a yearly event. Next year, because of the crowd size, the event may be held in Beasley Coliseum to accommodate everyone who wants to attend, Baker said.

LGTBQ youth and young adults belong, DeLusty said.

“There is a community out there for you. Even if it’s not the drag community, you can still find people that will accept you and love you regardless of who you are,” she said.

At the end of the show, purple spotlights shone on the drag queens as they walked away to a cheering full house and a standing ovation, returning behind the curtain as “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man after Midnight)” by ABBA blasted.