Sunday, January 28, 2018

Drag365: Show #20- Ultimate Drag Pageant at The West End

Gina Tonic // photo by Michael Block
Day: Thursday, January 18th

Show: Ultimate Drag Pageant, Week 1

Location: The West End

Queens Seen: Marti Gould Cummings (@martigcummings), Allura Borealis (@alluraborealis), Bambina Da Dondiva, Celah  Doore (@celahdoorenyc), Carlos the Uber Driver (@carlostheuberdriver), Foolisha (@thefoolisha), Gina Tonic (@itsginatonic), Nicole Onoscopi (@nicoleonoscopi), Precious Envy (@theenvyofprecious), Shelby Late (@shelby_late), Tiffany Anne Coke (@tiffanyannecoke)

Nicole Onoscopi // photo by Michael Block
Hosted by TV’s Marti Gould Cummings and Nedra Belle, the Ultimate Drag Pageant is a drag queen showcase competition where one queen will emerge victorious. For their sixth season, Ultimate Drag Pageant is upping the game. Now with ten contestants, this season is sponsored by House of La Rue, who will be giving away a weekly prize to the winner of each week. The first week’s theme was “Show Us Who You Are.” It’s a way for each contestant to show the judges and the crowd what to expect from them through the season. With Nedra away this week, filling in was guest judge Bearded Bitch, Kizha Carr.
Shelby Late // photo by Michael Block
To kick off the season, Nicole Onoscopi wowed the crowd with a Fancy mix, looking shiny and fabulous, as she mashed up the titular songs by Iggy Azalea and Reba McIntire, alongside some spoken word bits about being fancy. Serving robotic mask realness, Foolisha delivered a robot inspired mix which brilliantly featured “Coin Operated Boy” by The Dresden Dolls. Celah Doore showed off her pipes doing with an acoustic Lady Gaga medley. Timing is everything and Precious Envy capitalized on the recent death of Cranberries’ lead signer Dolores O’Riordan through a mashup of Katy Perry’s “ET” placed against The Cranberrie’s “Zombie. The seasoned queen of the cycle, Gina Tonic started off with a smart stand up set before singing a 20s-set version of “Blank Space” by Taylor Swift. Allura Borealis went for a straight number with “Gemini Feed” by Banks. The drag dancing diva Bambina Da Dondiva, or Bambi for short, brought a high-energy MILK mix with all the tricks you could want on this stage. This season is special for bringing the competition’s first couple competing as individuals. First up was chorus girl turned drag queen Tiffany Anne Coke with an NYC inspired mix. Her partner, Carlos the Uber Driver brought what she called a “Disco Nonsense” Mix, which included basically everything. The night concluded with Shelby Late offering the second twisted Taylor Swift number, with a live sung “Look What You Made Me Do.”
As stated, the season, the judges would award a weekly prize to the winner to the strongest performer of the bunch. I decided to do the same thing in my recaps. Coincidently, both the judges and I were unanimous. Gina Tonic was the clear-cut winner of the week. Keep an eye out for what Gina will bring as the competition continues. This is a very unique group of competitors. It’s evident that there are some tops and bottoms after one week. Will the bottoms rise to tops? Can the tops remain there? Follow along each week and make sure you take a visit to The West End and vote for your favorites! Each drink is an audience vote!