AUSTIN — Austin is once again becoming the center of the Drag Universe, with hundreds of drag artists from around the globe descending into our city for the Austin International Drag Festival.
Touted as the "crème de la crème" of the drag world, each Austin International Drag Festival artist will take part in about 400 performances all weekend long from Nov. 15 through 18.
"Expect the unexpected," said performer Dandy Velour, "drag son" of RuPaul's Drag Race winner Sasha Velour. "There are performers from around the world and each act brings something new to excite you. Stay open to taking it all in. You never know what you might see."
Daytime festival activities will take place at the Drag Village, hosted at Holiday Inn Austin Midtown. Those events include KingFest! (an all-day drag king celebration from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Nov. 15), Drag Village Showcases, a Drag Market, meet and greets, panels, workshops, a Glamour Lounge, photography studio, hospitality suite, a welcome dinner and show, after hours events and more.
"The Austin International Drag Festival works each year to create more space to highlight drag kings," said Velour. "Thursday, Nov. 15, will be 'King Fest,' an all-drag king showcase. Drag kings will be performing throughout the festival as well. I'm excited to not only perform but also to host a show during the festival and increase visibility for drag kings."
At night, the Drag Shuttle will take festival-goers to the Red River Cultural District in Downtown Austin, where artists from around the world will be performing at several venues. Nightly drag showcases are limited to ages 18 and up.
Back and fiercer than ever, the 2018 headliners for the world's largest drag festival include:
- Alexis Bevels (Camp Wannakiki Season 1)
- Ariel Versace (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
- Boiz of Austin (Austin, Texas)
- Brita Filter (New York, New York)
- Coco Jem Holiday (Grand Junction, Colorado)
- Complete Destruction (Providence, Rhode Island)
- Darcelle XV (Portland, Oregon)
- Dis Charge (Bristol, U.K.)
- Dr. Lady J (Cleveland, Ohio)
- Drag Clyo (Guayama, Puerto Rico)
- EmmaSis (Austin, Texas)
- Erika Klash (Dragula Season 2)
- Evah Destruction (Atlanta, Georgia)
- Flarington King (Toronto, Canada)
- Gloria Devine (Dallas, Texas)
- James Majesty (Dragula Season 2)
- Jizza Bella (New York, New York)
- Joey Bambino (King Me! Rise of a Drag King Season 2)
- Kara Foxx Paris (Austin, Texas)
- Louisiana Purchase (Austin, Texas)
- Lucy Stoole (Chicago, Illinois)
- Mahoganny (New York, New York)
- Maxi Glamour (St. Louis, Missouri)
- Maximum Capacity (Toronto, Canada)
- May May Graves (Dallas, Texas)
- Mystique Summers (Rupaul's Drag Race Season 2)
- Papi Churro (Austin, Texas)
- Paradox Rei (San Antonio, Texas)
- Rasta Boi Punany (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
- Ryan Stecken (Berlin, Germany)
- Sabrina Kinkade (Chicago, Illinois)
- Sha'Nyia Narcisse (Austin, Texas)
- Shyanne O'Shea (London, U.K.)
- Soju (Los Angeles, California)
- Trey Alize (King Me! Rise of a Drag King Season 1)
- Ursula Major (Dragula Season 1)
- Veranda L'Ni (Cleveland, Ohio)
- Vivian Dejour (Chicago, Illinois)
Festival passes range from $15 to $75. More information on tickets can be found here.
The festival is a 100 percent volunteer-run nonprofit event produced by Austin International Drag Foundation Inc., dedicated to the education, support and advancement of drag artists everywhere.
"The festival first inspired me to do drag," said Velour. "Since then, I have not only performed in the festival but all over the country. I have also created lasting relationships with fellow performers from around the world and can't wait to see them all soon."