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Pride Network hosts third annual Drag Show

By Jesse Bade, Staff Writer

The Hofstra Pride Network's third annual Drag Show definitely entertained and amazed all those who went to see it.

Tiah Carrera, a famous drag queen, hosted the show for the second year in a row. Carrera walked among the audience, interacting with students and provided comedy in between acts. Other drag queens such as Raquel Carrera, Blonka Ivette, Gizell Carrera and Jenna Lee Diemenz put on performances to songs such as "Feeling Good" and "Candy Man." However, the act that seemed to truly win the hearts of all the audience members was Logo's RuPaul Drag Race Winner, Raja. Raja kicked off her first performance in leather high-heeled boots and cat ears that caused a standing ovation.

"I thought it was great," said Catherine Karpoich, a student and member of the Pride Network. "Raja was fierce!"

Also capturing the attention of the audience was the students who performed their first drag king and queen shows. Students using the stage names Venus Divine and King James got up on stage and hosted their performances.

"I thought it was great and was so excited for them," said Taylor Elhai, a student. "I was glad they had a venue to perform for the first time." Student organizations such as Sigma ‘Cappella and the Imani Dance Ensemble also performed.

The night, although full of laughter and fun, did bring up a serious matter. As Carrera lip sanc, a slide show played in the background displaying the horrors of bullying homosexuals and the suicides that often follow. "I want to deliver a positive message," Carrera said speaking to the audience about the harm of bullying. "We are fighting…words are more powerful than actions…words are very harmful."

The night was a success and the drag queens seem to love coming back.

"I love coming here, I love being on the east coast," Raja said. "I get to celebrate a really relevant art form, drag." Raja continued to say that she was grateful to be in the presence of "such awesome, nice people."

Christian Fuscarino agreed that the show was a success as they raised over $350 from outside sources, not including student donations, and roughly over 350 people attended the event.

In comparison to last year, Fuscarino said, "It went a lot smoother, it was our second year with a high profile celebrity…we were able to be more prepared with security." The thing that Fuscarino appreciated most about this year was "that Raja took the time to talk about drag culture and what it's like to perform with a different identity."

 Jose Rivera was director of the drag show and could be seen running around throughout it making sure it went off without a hitch, later commenting. "It was a success and went smooth…it went over time but everybody enjoyed the show and loved the performers," Rivera said.

"What is nice is that it showed we have others, outside the LGBTQ community who care and are there," Fuscarino said about the diversity in the audience.

The Drag Show, held in the Student Center Theater, mixed entertainment with a strong message to tolerate differences in sexuality and gender. (Marc Butcavage/The Chronicle)

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