The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Students take the runway for Towers Hall drag show

On campus drag show for and by students
Photo by Cade Fisher
Students filled the lobby, with more joining as they were on their way to their dorm rooms.

Nestled in Towers Hall lobby, a student drag show was held to give students the chance to express themselves and celebrate the LGBTQ+ community.

This is the second year Towers Hall held the student drag show, students last year wanting to make their own rendition of the Fireball drag show earlier in the year. Some students went to Towers Hall Council and asked to make this an event.

The south end of the lobby was set up with a catwalk lined with LED lights with rows of chairs on both sides. All of the windows were covered in colorful tarps and streamers were hung from the ceiling.

There was a makeshift room set up with tarps for the performers to stand behind before being welcomed onto the stage. 

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Along with the show, stations were set up on the other side of the lobby for viewers to further involve themselves in the show. There was face painting, hair tinseling, a snack table and a station to get cash to tip performers. 

The show was hosted by two performers, Crystal Cutabitch and Tiffany Aura, who introduced each performer and reminded the crowd of the rules for the event.

Other drag performers included Parkelicious, Scarlet Flame, Ima Doll and Michael Amity. These performers did a mix of songs spanning from pop to country, enjoying their time performing and entertaining the crowd.

Grace Becker, the Towers North hall director, said the event helps celebrate students and queer culture. The event, being in the lobby, was visible and out for residents to view and experience on the walk back to their dorm rooms.

“It’s Important in light of the conversations about queer identities on college campuses and the support, being visibly supportive,” Becker said. “It’s important to let all different kinds of identities be able to showcase who they are and the things that they love.”

During the show, the hosts brought eight members of the audience onto the stage to participate in a lip sync battle. Volunteers were brought on stage and given the chance to perform like the drag performers they just saw.

There was an incident with a previous UW-Eau Claire employee who physically interacted with a performer last year. That employee no longer works at UW-Eau Claire, but Becker said the safety of the performers was a main priority when planning the show.

“We take the safety and comfortability of our residents as the highest priority,” Becker said. “There’s lots of professional staff here to maintain those boundaries. We have a very good working relationship with the university police, so if something were to escalate we feel prepared to handle anything that could happen.”

The show began and all of the chairs were full. Some residents stood on the walls and in the hallways as the event continued to see the performances put on.

Sam Feller, a second-year neuroscience student, said she was excited to see the effort put into the show from the performers and the organizers. She said that there was a lot of support from the crowd.

“It’s a huge form of expression. In the queer community it’s huge and well recognized,” Feller said. “It’s really cool to see other people present themselves in such a fun, exciting way, and not be afraid to do that. Honestly, I was sitting in my chair and they made me just want to go out and try something.”

Fisher can be reached at [email protected].

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