The newest season of RuPaul’s Drag Race might be starting up at the end of February, but only about a week later and a few key Drag Race alum are putting on a new show in New York City. March 5 and 6 will bring talent like Peppermint, Bob the Drag Queen, Shea Coulee, The Vixen, Monique Heart, and BeBe Zahara Benet, together for a lineup of performances titled Nubia.
“This all-new show is a celebration of opulence, regality, and pure, unadulterated Black excellence,” the description reads. “Featuring five of the most celebrated Queens in drag herstory, NUBIA is a live out loud, show-stopping extravaganza thrown directly in the face of racial division and political divisiveness.” Since the initial launch, Drag Race season 9 competitor Shea Coulee joined the line-up, making a full six. As of yet, the performance has not been marketed as a tour.
Of the six, two are notably winners of their season: Benet and Bob. Peppermint ended in the top two and Coulee in the top four. As for Heart, she was easily one of the most meme-’d queens of her season, while The Vixen forced producers and the audience to reckon with how race was portrayed and dealt with on the show; each and every one of them has an oversized legacy.
“Black queens, no matter how popular you are or how well you did in the show, sometimes you don’t receive the same love or the same adulation that white queens get,” Bob says in a teaser video for Nubia, addressing an oft-discussed phenom. Nubia, in ways, provides an alternative to that but centering these performers.
“Black queens matter because now that we are in a time where people are starting to recognize drag as more than something frivolous,” Peppermint says. “As an industry, as an economy, as an enterprise’ it’s time for people to realize the value that these black queens — that the Nubian queens — bring and can contribute to the art of drag. There’s a lot of people that are just unaware. So now it’s time to learn and we’re your teachers.”
Nubia will premiere on March 5. Tickets are still available.