The local drag artists are finally getting the attention they deserve here in the Philippines. Coming from the success of RuPaul’s “Drag Race Philippines,” the first-ever drag show conceptualized by a Filipino—“Drag Den with Manila Luzon” continues to highlight Filipino talent. And it’s having its finale and coronation night this coming Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023.
There’s no denying that drag shows are making waves. The #DragDenPH is popular in various social media platforms from Twitter to TikTok. The cast of “DragDen with Manila Luzon,” especially Manila Luzon herself, is aware that drag is a platform that allows the queens to not just express themselves but also to participate in conversations on what’s happening in today’s society.
“I think when you get all dolled up and you look as fabulous as all these queens here, you command all the attention of anyone that can see you. And we want to use that attention that we have to further the world and the society,” she tells MB Life at the “Drag Den” finale press conference held on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023 at Seda Hotel in Quezon City. “We like to make people think, we like to challenge norms, we like to show how you can express yourself in extreme ways and inspire other people to do the same.”
The Fil-Am drag queen who rose to fame after finishing as a runner-up to the third season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” show in America also believes that drag is political.
“Drag is political but it’s also fabulous, it’s also silly, it’s also glamorous,” she says. “It’s a lot of things.”
This is something NAIA and the rest of the cast agreed with. NAIA is among the top 3 finalists of “Drag Den with Manila Luzon” together with Shewarma and Maria Cristina.
“As drag queens we do command so much attention, and I feel like that attention can be used for the greater good and advocacies,” she says. “As drag queens, maganda na nga kami may advocacy pa.”
In the end, Manila Luzon thanked director Rod Singh for giving them this opportunity and for producing a show that showed the whole world how talented Filipino drag queens are.
“But what’s really cool, what Direk Rod has provided us is another level of drag and that is putting out messages that speak to people—everyone can think, learn, and open up their minds,” she ends.
The show is upping the ante with a breathtaking finale concert and a fabulous grand coronation night this Thursday live at the Samsung Hall in SM Aura and will also be available on Prime Video at 7 p.m. PHT. No less than “Drag Lord” Manila Luzon is set to host the event that will see the top three contestants— NAIA, Shewarma, Maria Cristina— compete for the title of “Drag Supreme.” Cheering on the side are other members of the “Drag Cartel” — OA, Aries Night, Barbie-Q, Pura Luka Vega, Lady Gagita with “Drag Dealer” Nicole Cordoves, and “Drag Runner” Sassa Gurl.