By Savannah Lewis
The Queer Student Alliance (QSA) and Campus Activies Board (CAB) hosted a drag show in the Berkman Hall Auditorium on Oct. 10. This show was one of the many events that were held to celebrate pride week. Ren Kauffman, co-president of QSA, and Riley Roubanes, the diversity chair for CAB, collaborated to put on the event.
The drag show featured performers from a variety of different skill levels, from professionals to first-timers.
“Usually we have our professional show in November, but we actually had so many students that were interested in doing it that we ended up in the collaboration with CAB for the whole week,” Kauffman explained.
The dragshow had over 280 students attend, according to Kauffman.
Along with student performers, the drag show featured Dakota Cox, a professional drag queen who hosted the event.
When asked what her favorite part was, Emma Hoover, a first-year student who attended the event, said she appreciated the diversity.
“Everyone had a completely different dance. I was so shocked, it was crazy knowing they were all students, because they looked like they had been doing it forever.”
Kauffman credited this professionalism from the students to the drag workshop they held. This workshop helped students get an idea of how to perform drag and feel comfortable with the event.
Along with students from Cleveland State, members of QSA offered students from John Carroll University the chance to attend Cleveland State’s drag show due to theirs being canceled.
Thomas VanZeeland, president of the LGBTQIA+Allies group at John Carroll explained that their annual drag show was canceled due to students protesting last year’s show. Their drag show had been held off and on for the last 30 years, but was on its seventh consecutive year before it was cancelled this time around.
“The university president, in an effort to ‘remain neutral’ this year, told us we were unable to have one this year.” VanZeeland explained. “After the John Carroll drag show was cancelled, we were approached by members of queer organizations from colleges all around the area who invited us to attend their drag events. It means a lot to all of the queer people at JCU to see how much support we got from other organizations.”
Since then, the students at John Carroll were able to figure out a way to still hold their drag show after all. They will also be going to Case Western Reserve University to collaborate with them on a drag show.
Cleveland State’s QSA will also have another drag show with professional performers, along with a few student performers. The show is set to happen on Nov. 8.