I must start this review by outing myself as a total fraud. A liar. What the kids would call a ‘fake fan’, because I have yet to watch Season Ten of Rupaul’s Drag Race.
I know, the horror!
It’s not that I haven’t wanted to, it’s just that Seasons are pumped out so quickly these days that by the time I’ve finished catching up on one, another is already half way through. This meant going into Sydney last week to see the 2019 Werq the World Tour, I didn’t know much about a big chunk of the cast. I had seen bits and pieces of them on social media, good and bad, seen the memes and the drama, but I hadn’t seen any of the three Season Ten girls; Kameron Michael’s, Asia O’Hara and Eureka O’Hara perform. I didn’t know what they were like or what to expect. I was both nervous and excited by this, looking forward to being introduced to them for the first time and seeing what they could bring. The rest of the cast I knew well; Detox, Naomi Smalls, Kim Chi and Violet Chachki. All sickening queens that I was confident would slay the house down and give a good show.
The Big Top at Luna Park, the largest venue I’ve been to for a drag show, was packed. The huge crowd was buzzing with excitement. As we took our seats, all seven girls opened the show in extravagant, fabulous style. I was immediately taken with the Season Ten queens. They were charming, funny and looked to die for. Asia O’Hara introduced herself as the host for the show and did her job well. Among her fierce performances, both solo and with the other girls, she was an incredible host. Asia interacted well with the audience; hyping us up, coming into the crowd, making everyone laugh and even getting people up on stage for a lip-sync battle. I didn’t stop smiling when she was on the mic.
Whilst the show initially went off without a hitch, it didn’t take long before some drama came up. Drama that I had been dreading would occur.
The show in Sydney came just days after Naomi Smalls had made the polarizing decision to eliminate Manila Luzon from All Stars Four. The resulting hate had been nothing but disgusting and revolting. Racial slurs, death threats and slander about her family among some of the many comments that had been blasted around the internet. I had hoped leading up to the show that people would keep their comments to themselves in the real world and let Naomi do her job. This was not the case.
Asia came out to make a public service announcement not long into the show and informed us that one of the girls had been heckled. I didn’t hear what was shouted, and she didn’t elaborate on who it had been directed to or what the hate was about, but it didn’t take a genius to figure it out. Asia very passionately stated that she knew exactly who the culprit was and had no problem kicking them out. Hate was not going to be tolerated at this show and the audience roared in agreement with her. Several queens have since commented on the event online and I was glad to see so many people, not just in the room with us but around the world, supporting Naomi against the hate.
After that, the show went on smoothly. No more hecklers or negativity, just a crowd of people having the time of their lives as the girls did their thing. Every single performance was amazing. Kameron Michaels came out with Cher, Eureka lip-synced as Ursula, Violet Chachki performed a stunning aerial routine and Naomi blessed us with her now signature back bend. There wasn’t one girl that didn’t absolutely slay it. I sat there going between mouth opening, unable to look away awe at Kim Chi’s ethereal performance to finger clicking, jumping up and down in excitement at Detox’s sensual number. The atmosphere throughout the show was electric, everyone was having such a great time.
Towards the end of the show, as if I hadn’t already fallen in love with them, the Season Ten girls did their own segment, lip-syncing and dancing together. They had high energy, clearly got along well and had the audience gagging with their impressive group choreography and stage presence.
The show ended with all the queens out on stage, performing one last time before we cheered them off. People were buzzing as they left, all talking about how good a show it was for a long time after we exited the building and were heading home. Werq the World was honestly one of the best ensemble drag shows I’ve been to. An absolute ten out of ten. The girls were all high energy with incredible, diverse performances. I would 100 % recommend going to the show if it arrives in your city, it’s worth it whether you’re familiar with all the girls or not. I certainly left the show with three new favourite queens and even more love for the other four.
Written by Contributor Ashleigh House