Drag Queens Sell Out Phillips Hall Theater

Jessmarie Flores / el Don

Professor and Communications Studies chair Lance Lockwood made his grand entrance onto the Phillips Hall Theatre stage in a solid black suit and a pair of ruby, sequined, platform high heels. Backstage, four men were putting the finishing touches on their makeup, outfits and routines.

Lockwood — along with drag queens Wilhelmina Caviar, Twiggy D. Warhol, Nomi B. and Mahaliah Nakita — educated a sold-out crowd April 12, exposing them to the song, dance, glitter and glam of their particular brand of gender performance.

Drag-U-Cation began as a guest speaker day three years ago in Lockwood’s gender communications class to help students learn about drag culture, which is usually confined to nightclubs and bars. The show grew each semester, morphing into this year’s ticketed event for 400 people.

All four queens lip synced and danced to selected songs and engaged in a Q&A with the audience. Afterwards, internet radio personality and host Alexander Rodriguez hosted a “Lip Sync for Your Life” battle featuring students.

“It’s cool to see from an artist view that you can go from man to woman, or woman to man,” said Santa Ana College student Gabriel Andrade. “That’s what matters, and the illusion was created, so it was awesome.”