Sac State fraternity brings back annual drag show

‘Life is a Drag’ held in the University Union Wednesday


Leticia Sanchez

Coco Bechamel performs in the University Union Ballroom Wednesday, Oct. 16. They wore a sparkly dress and flashy jewelry for the performance.

Delta Lambda Phi, an LGBTQ fraternity chapter at Sacramento State, hosted the annual drag show “Life is a Drag” Wednesday night in the University Union Ballroom. 

The fraternity was founded by gay men and created to be a safe space.

This show featured local Sacramento drag queens and kings, such as Mercury Rising, Ali Katraz, Sasha Devaroe, Coco Bechamel, Ben Flicker, Crystal Gellani, Hellen Heels and Taryn Thru-U. 

Story continues below gallery.

The show started with a performance from the queens and kings, and then transitioned to a game with audience members and a second number from the performers. 

The performances featured elaborate dances, colorful outfits and extravagant makeup. The show’s venue created a very intimate and up-close atmosphere.

Daniel Ruiz, Delta Lambda Phi Chapter President, says the drag show was created to spread the word on the Sacramento chapter of the fraternity, which was formed six years ago. 

“Part of our expansion process did include doing an event for philanthropy, and we decided to go with the drag show just because it showcases how LGBT rights have progressed,” Ruiz said. “And with Stonewall Riots starting with a Black trans woman who does drag, (drag) was very important to us.”

Story continues below tweet.

A portion of the event’s proceeds will be going to national philanthropy PFLAG, which supports the open expression and diversity of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, according to the event flyer provided by Delta Lambda Phi.

Ruiz said the process for selecting drag queens and kings to perform at “Life is a Drag” heavily involved supporting local talent, bringing back performers from previous years and welcoming new performers. 

“We like to incorporate a lot of local talent that performs at Faces, Badlands, alongside new and upcoming kings and queens,” Ruiz said.

RELATED: GALLERY: Local drag queens win hearts, dollar bills at campus semi-annual drag show

Before the show, Ali Michaels, also known as Brian Ratto, said he got into drag through the International Court System, a drag charity. 

Drag king Ben Flicker, also known as Melissa Taylor, was the first drag king to be featured during the show. They got into drag about a year ago and received the title of “Mr. Gay Sacramento” at the 2019 CGNIE Pageant. 

Flicker said them receiving the title was received well and that the recognition opened a lot of doors for them. 

“I’ve (been able) to go to a lot of different coronations,” Flicker said. “We’re going to the Austin International Drag Festival, I’ll be getting to participate in that. It’s four days of drag from all over the world.”

As the performances came to an end, Ana Mendoza, a Spanish and ethnic studies major, shared her thoughts on the show, which she watched with her family.

“I thought it was really exciting, it was so much fun watching all the drag queens,” Mendoza said. “We came here last year, so we couldn’t wait to come this year”

Ruiz expressed his satisfaction with how the show went and his appreciation for the performers of the night. 

“I’m very proud of the turnout,” he said. “I know all the queens and the kings had a great time performing for Sac State students.”

Additional reporting by Kayla Brown.