RuPaul RuVeals all about Drag Race & more
By BeBe Sweetbriar | BebeSweetbriar.com
The Logo TV premiere of RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 8 has finally been RuVealed along with the 12 drag queens who will be scratching, biting and bitch slapping their way to earn the ultimate $100,000 cash prize and the title of America’s Next Drag Superstar. On March 7 fans around the world of the reality TV show phenomenon will get their long awaited return of the highly popular drag competition. Before it airs to the world, five select cities have been selected to pre-premiere RPDR Season 8 with huge events beginning 2-weeks before TV broadcast. These cities include New York, Chicago, Austin, Los Angeles and San Francisco (February 28 | Mezzanine) produced by Voss Events. After these events I’m sure everyone will have chosen their #Team monikers. So, with the world focusing on the lucky 12 and the anticipation of the shows 100th episode, I wanted to check in on the person who started all this hoopla in the first place, RuPaul! Ru has spent 8 years watching her baby grow up before the world’s eyes, recalling the things that did or didn’t happen, the things that have inspired a generation of people to be themselves, and the things that changed the lives of 100 promising talents forever. I wanted to tap into that ‘Rucall’ and asked the Queen of all drag queens about the show, the contestants, his world influence, and his next project(s).
BeBe Sweetbriar: Wow, 8 years! That’s reaching that decade mark. Very few shows ever reach that milestone. Do you think 10 years is in the cards for Drag Race?
RuPaul: We still have a blast making the show after all these years, but our longevity really depends on the audience and how long they’re interested in watching.
The final decision in choosing the World’s Next Drag Supermodel year-to-year is up to the Almighty Ru. Looking back over your past winner choices, any disappointments in the outcome of your decisions?
No disappointments at all. In truth, all the girls who make it onto the show are winners. The show has been an amazing launch pad for 100 Queens who would otherwise not have an international audience. So in that respect, everybody wins.
With that being said, RPDR has proven to be such a great platform to not only propel the Art of Drag forward, but also to propel individual drag careers forward, particularly, The careers of non-title winners of Drag Race. Are there more and more contestants on the show less hungry for the final prize & title knowing that just being on the show could be a career maker?
(laughs) The human ego doesn’t work that way. Every Man, Woman and child who’s ever entered a contest, has their gaze locked on the top prize.
RPDR came under some fire from viewers and past years’ contestants for the lackluster in Season 7. Did any of that play out in your head while choosing the 12 girls for Season 8?
Absolutely not! For every season we’ve been on the air, social media has declared “the current Queens aren’t as good as the previous Queens.”
Is there something you would have hoped one of the girls would have brought to the “Guess Who’s Coming to the Ru Dinner” table, but so far that hasn’t shown up?
Our contestants are chosen based on charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent. Every season I’m wonderfully surprised by everything else they bring to the table.
Obviously, RPDR has morphed a little from Season 1 to 7. Is there any new things the show’s audience can anticipate in the upcoming Season 8?
Every season takes on its own identity simply because the cast’s DNA changes. You have to remember that our contestants were once the little kids who were shunned for being unique. On Drag Race, we reward our girls for being themselves. Put them all in the same room and (collectively) you have a big beautiful monster that the world has never laid eyes on before.
Likening your success as a world renown aficionado of your craft to Oprah’s, you have an impact on subject matter outside of the world of drag putting much of what you do and say under a microscope. Is that a blessing or a curse?
Blessings and curses go hand in hand, as does night & day, Ying & Yang, and so on. It all depends on where you put your focus. I choose to focus on the blessings.
Let’s talk about some Ru blessings that are in your Bag of Talents that would be there absent of drag. You are a singer coming off a successful Realness album release last year, you have hosted a successful talk show, and you have done quite a bit of acting out of drag. Any of these talents set to reappear in the near future in new ventures?
Yes! RuPaul’s DragCon is May 7th & 8th and it will be twice as big as last year. I have a new album coming out called Butch Queen, plus the TV series Skin Wars (GSN) and Fresh Paint (GSN) and a new game show called Gay For Play (Logo).
With your mark set in indelible ink in the worlds of beauty & fashion, where are the RuPaul wigs, makeup and fashion lines?
I’m working on it!
Gloss Magazine would like to Thank Joelle Hawkes RuPaul’s Manager & “The Woman Behind the Woman”. You’re a Star!!!
Catch RuPaul every Monday night on RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 8 beginning on March 7 at 9pm on Logo TV.
See the RPDR Season 8 San Francisco Premeire on February 28th at Mezzanine 444 Jessie St, San Francisco. Presented by Voss, Locoya Hill Entertainment, World of Wonder & LogoTV. With performances by the Entire cast of Season 8, hosted by past RPDR winner Bianca Del Rio, with music by Lady Bunny. Doors at 8PM / Show at 9PM. Advanced tickets $40-75 @vossevents.com/locoya
RuPAUL’S DRAG RACE VIEWING PARTIES 2016
Every year around the bay several venues host RPDR viewing parties complete with drag hosts, RPDR contestants of past & present, giveaways, performances and more! This season, beginning Monday, March 7th, check out these venues for your weekly dose of Creativity, Uniqueness, Nerve & Talent:
JC Events Presents: Drag Mondays
Mondays @8PM | The Cafe 2369 Market St, SF
Hosted by Mahlae Balenciaga. For a list of Guest Appearances visit jceventssf.com
Jack Daniels Presents: Mahogany Mondays
Mondays @8PM | Midnight Sun 4067 18th St, SF
Hosted by RPDR Season 5 contestant Honey Mahogany & Sister Roma. For info visit midnightsunsf.com
Frisco Robbie Presents: Opulence
Mondays @8PM | Beaux 2344 Market St, SF
Hosted by Au Jus. For info visit beauxsf.com
Toad Hall Presents: Mondays Are A Drag
Mondays @8:30PM | Toad Hall 4146 18th St, SF
Hosted by Camille Tow. More at toadhallbar.com
Meet The Queens of RPDR Season 8
RuPaul is back to light up the runway with the highly anticipated new season of the groundbreaking series, RuPaul’s Drag Race. Logo has now revealed the eagerly awaited cast comprised of the nation’s 12 drag elite who are all in hopes of winning the title of America’s Next Drag Superstar in the highly anticpated 8th season of the series. The winner will join the ranks of previous winners (pictured above in order by season won): BeBe Zahara Benet, Tyra Sanchez, Raja, Sharon Needles, Chad Michaels (All Stars), Jinkx Monsoon, Bianca Del Rio, and reigning champion Violet Chachki. The season premiere also marks a drag milestone as it features the 100th episode and 100th drag queen to sashay into the work room.
“This is an amazing time to be producing television,” said executive producer RuPaul Charles. “The fact that RuPaul’s Drag Race is celebrating its 100th episode is undeniable proof that there
is an insatiable hunger for authentic, unfiltered and ribald voices that not only challenge the norm, but help redefine mainstream media.”
The new season will premiere on Monday, March 7th at 9:00 PM ET/PT with a supersized 90-minute episode that unveils a court of cut-throat Queens each competing to snatch the crown and strut away with a $100,000 cash prize and the coveted title of “America’s Next Drag Superstar.” Along the way, they’ll face an unpredictable competition and deliver gag-worthy and jaw-dropping moments as these talented ladies of drag join the fabulous 88 Queens who fought for the crown before them.
The 12 Queens (pictured below) who will compete in the pop culture phenomenon that has taken the world by its weave include:
Acid Betty | Brooklyn, NY
TW: @acidbettyrocks, IG: @acidbetty
Bob The Drag Queen | New York, NY
TW: @thatonequeen, IG: @bobthedragqueen
Chi Chi DeVayne | Shreveport, LA
TW: @ChiChiDeVayne, IG: @cheechdevayne
Cynthia Lee Fontaine | Austin, TX
TW: @lee_fontaine, IG: @cynthialeefontaine
Dax ExclamationPoint | Savannah, GA
TW: @Daxclamation, IG: @daxclamation
Derrick Barry | Las Vegas, NV
TW: @DerrickBarry, IG: @derrickbarry
Kim Chi | Chicago, IL
TW: @KimChi_Chic, IG: @kimchi_chic
Laila McQueen | Gloucester, MA
TW: @LailaMcQueen, IG: @misslailamcqueen
Naomi Smalls | Redlands, CA
TW: @naomismallsduh, IG: @naomismalls
Naysha Lopez | Chicago, IL
TW: @nayshalopez, IG: @nayshalopez
Robbie Turner | Seattle, WA
TW: @TheRobbieTurner, IG: @therobbieturner
Thorgy Thor | Brooklyn, NY
TW: @ThorgyThor, IG: @thorgythor
ALSO PREMIERING ON LOGO TV IN 2016
Hosted by RuPaul, “Gay For Play” is a 30 minute, comedic, trivia game show where a panel of six celebrities help two contestants answer pop culture questions to win cash and prizes.
Mark Your Calendar: RuPAUL’s DRAGCON
May 7-8.2016 | Los Angeles Convention Center
Produced by drag legend RuPaul together with World of Wonder Productions – the creators of the global TV phenomenon, RuPaul’s Drag Race – RuPaul’s DragCon is a HERstory making celebration of the art of drag and self-expression for all. The upcoming RuPaul’s DragCon is expected to dramatically exceed last year’s inaugural event, with the increased attendance tripling the Convention Center floor space. Tens of thousands will be on hand to mix and mingle with world-renowned drag stars and celebrities, and experience exclusive attractions including screenings, panel discussion, lip sync contests, drag HERstory lessons, fashion and make-up tutorials for men and women, and once-in-a-lifetime autograph and photo ops. Single day tickets are $30. 2-day all-access tickets are $50.
Tickets are available @rupaulsdragcon.com starting at $30. (Note: VIP Experience tickets have sold out). The RuPaul’s DragCon gift bag is a must have and is still available. Fans can purchase photos and autographs at the show.