DCU Drag Race Comes Home

Aoibhín Meghen

The sixth annual DCU Drag Race came back to its home ground on Thursday, February 20 as students celebrated Rainbow Week 2020.

Organised by DCU’s LGBTA Society, the sold-out DCU Drag Race took place in The Venue on the Glasnevin campus and was hosted by drag queen Davina Divine.

Six queens participated in the drag competition, each of them performing in three categories, which included a runway, a talent category and lip-sync. After those three performances, the judges chose Dr. Count Evil and Donna Tella as the two finalists in the competition and they went head to head in a final lip sync battle.

In the end, it was Dr. Count Evil who took the Drag Race crown, although the level of talent from all the competitors was at a new level for DCU Drag Race. All of the queen’s looks were extremely polished however Dr. Count Evil’s feminine yet grotesque style as well as her high energy performance stood out.

This competition showcased an extremely bright future for Irish drag. The judging panel consisted of prominent drag and LGBTQIA+ figures, Pixie Woo, Phil T Gorgeous, Paul Ryder and Regina George.

Over €5,000 was raised during Rainbow Week. Drag Race contributed a large part to this through ticket sales as the event sold 300 tickets. Voluntary donations could also be added on to the ticket price which was €10 euro as well as a raffle.

Last year they managed to raise €3,000  during Rainbow Week. According to Chloe Rooney, Public Relations Officer with the LGBTA Society, moving the venue back to DCU helped to get more DCU students going to the event.

“It definitely played a part in how many DCU students came,” said Rooney. She said the committee received many messages asking if people from outside the university were welcome, which they were.

Events like this are particularly important in universities because they “highlight what the LGBTQ+ community is in to,” said Rooney. “In university, showcasing any LGBTQ+ things I think is so important because they used to be in a minority and now we are thriving.”

Despite this being an entirely DCU run event, none of the queens participating in this year’s competition were students in the university. There were, however, performances on the night from DCU Dance as well as former DCU Drag Race winner Maura Darragh who entertained the audience during the interval.

All the proceeds from Drag Race and any fundraising over Rainbow Week went towards Dublin Lesbian Line (DLL), a confidential helpline offering support to the LGBTQIA+ community.

Each year the LGBTA Society chooses a charity that represents a letter of the LGBTAI+ community.  Emma Loo, Events Officer with the society told The College View why DLL was this year’s charity of choice.

“We kind of have a higher number of lesbians now on the committee and in the society and we felt we weren’t represented,” said Loo. She also explained that “when we started looking and we found out they had no state funding whatsoever, we knew this was the right charity for us.”

Rooney also praised DCU for being so accepting. Rainbow Week was hosted with great support from the Students’ Union.

Other events hosted by the LGBTA Society were a hangover hub and coffee morning hosted alongside Sober Society, Mental Health Society, and Erasmus Students Network. There were also several talks and workshops throughout the week. Rainbow Week ran from February 17 to 21.

Aoibhín Meghen

Image credit: Jane Kelly