With a turn-out of nearly 70 people, Senior Jenny Wong’s vision for her fraternity, Lambda Alpha Epsilon (LAE), came to life Wednesday evening.
“We needed a fundraiser, so I came up with this brilliant idea out of the blue,” said Wong.
Wong composed LAE’s first Drag Queen Pageant at the Bonnie Auditorium. She felt as though the event would draw a diverse crowd, as well as raise awareness for her organization.
“I’m excited to see who’s in it and what they look like,” said Junior Audrey Sieren before the show started.
Seven brothers from LAE volunteered to dress as women in the pageant: Aaron Darnell, Jason Hense, Patrick Breslin, Blaine Morgan, Randy Phillips, Nik Burton, and Demetrios Houpos. They staged their names as Prada, Mercedes, Co Co, Shefara, Jasmine, Nikita, and Snooky. From Roanoke, professional Drag Queens “Jayda,” “Cailey Taylor,” and “Andrea Lee” also joined in the show. Jayda co-hosted the event with student Stephen Gregory.
A panel of four judges, including: Cailey Taylor, Andrea Lee, and Professors Dr. Todd Burke and Dr. Stephen Owen, assessed the pageant. They based their evaluations off of a series of challenges. The first circumstance introduced the contestants, or the LAE guys. Through individual entertainment, the boys hoped to win over the crowd. In the second phase, participants showed off their skills for the talent show. Most of the guys chose to engage in humor. Members flaunted their evening gowns in the third segment, and the fourth section involved questions and answers. The professionals performed in between each act.
Shortly after intermission, at which time the judges finalized their choices, Burke and Owen announced the winners: Snooky, or Houpos, took third place, followed by Co Co, also known as Morgan, and crowned in first place, was Prada.
“Got third place in the drag show,” Houpos laughed. “My life is moving along pretty good. I hope LAE is happy.”
LAE couldn’t have been more pleased. The crowd rose for a standing ovation at the end of the night, while many others stayed behind to take pictures and discuss the performance.
“Oh my gosh! I am so glad I went. That was hilarious. I loved it,” Sieren said.
“I think it went amazing. I think our guys got a whole new feel for what it’s like to be a woman,” said Wong.
After much positive feedback, it would be no surprise if LAE chose to host another Drag Show for their organization next year.