(Santa Ana, CA) - Santa Ana College (SAC) continues to advance the knowledge of its students, allowing them exposure to concepts outside of their comfort zone and the opportunity to educate themselves on cultures different than their own. In an effort to dispel myth from method, SAC’s Gender Communications 206 class and Professor Lance Lockwood are teaming up with drag queens across the country for the fourth annual Drag-u-cation: The Fierce Queens Academy on Thursday, April 25.
“Part of the reason I wanted to bring this to campus is that a lot of our students today, not just within the LGBTQ community, have always been curious about drag, but only get to see what they see on TV, if they’re lucky,” said Lockwood.
Over the past two decades, drag culture has been catapulted into the mainstream. Previously, drag was considered underground entertainment, frequented mostly by gay men, but the times have changed. Drag was launched into the living rooms of Middle America when Logo TV, and now VH1, began airing RuPaul’s Drag Race. Eleven seasons later, with a 12th season currently casting, the show continues to give an inside look into a culture that has emerged from the shadows.
SAC’s Drag-u-cation puts ticket holders in the middle of the phenomenon with a question and answer session that will ask participants scripted and open microphone questions from the audience. Everything from the history of drag to the steps involved in getting ready and the misconceptions about drag culture will be asked before the queens go back stage to prepare for a drag performance, allowing them to share their craft with the community.
“The four drag queens that I’ve had come back every year are very much open books,” said Lockwood. “They love the education portion and teaching about what drag culture is, what it was in the past, what it is in the present and what they see it being in the future. This event gives any student of any age the opportunity to see a full-blown drag performance on a theatrical stage with lights and sound.”
Returning as emcee is Alexander Rodriguez, host of “On the Rocks with Alexander,” one of the largest LGBTQ radio shows on iHeartRadio, and co-host of LaTV’s Glitterbomb, the first Latinx television show for the LGBTQ community. This year, the SAC Dance Department has been asked to participate and will perform an opening number before the Q&A begins.
Since its inception, Drag-u-cation has grown exponentially. In the beginning, the show setting was intimate – in a classroom with about 50 students the first year and 120 students the second year. Last year, it was moved to SAC’s Phillips Hall where the 450-seat theater sold out and the event is expected to continue to grow.
The all-ages Drag-u-cation: The Fierce Queens Academy begins at 7:00 p.m. at SAC’s Phillips Hall, 1454-1592 N. Bristol Street in Santa Ana. Tickets are $8 for students and $10 for general admission and are available online through drag-u-cation.com, which will provide additional information and a link to purchase.
About Santa Ana College
Santa Ana College (SAC), which turned 100 years old in 2015, serves about 18,000 students each semester at its main campus in Santa Ana. The college prepares students for transfer to four-year institutions, and provides invaluable workforce training and customized training for business and industry. In addition, another 11,000 students are served through the college’s School of Continuing Education located at Centennial Education Center. Ranked as one of the nation’s top two-year colleges awarding associate degrees to Latino and Asian students, the college is also recognized throughout the state for its comprehensive workforce training programs for nurses, firefighters, law enforcement and other medical personnel. SAC is one of two comprehensive colleges under the auspices of the Rancho Santiago Community College District.