Drag race raises awareness, entertains
March 30, 2015
Drag queens took the stage at the Kimmel Center for University Life to participate in lip sync battles, comedic acts and dance routines. In an effort to promote LGBTQ awareness, the Beta Xi Chapter of Delta Lambda Phi hosted its sixth annual drag race on Sunday.
Members of sororities and fraternities, as well professional drag queens, participated as contestants in the event. DLP is the National Social Fraternity for gay, bisexual and progressive men, and the drag race was a fundraiser for Health Outreach To Teens, an outreach program designed to offer resources for the health needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning adolescents and young adults.
Former Beta Xi member Ryan Rockmore, who was the first member of the Beta Xi Chapter to put on a drag show six years ago, said the program aims to reach members of the LGBTQ community that may not have access to helpful resources.
“We were trying to reach out to portions of our community that wouldn’t normally come into contact with medical or mental health resources, and this organization was able to help,” Rockmore said.
Rockmore added that the absence of a drag race at NYU was outrageous.
“I felt it was a big disservice of the NYU community not to have a drag show already in place,” Rockmore said. “It was fitting to have a drag show put on by the fraternity for gay, bisexual and progressive men.”
Beta Xi Chapter founding father Matt Maggiacomo said he created the Beta Xi chapter over eight years ago to support the NYU LGBTQ community and help them cope with
“I created the Beta Xi Chapter in 2007 to give these guys a chance to come together as one entity to help each other and give back to their community,” Maggiacomo said. “The significance of the drag race was to raise money for the LGBTQ community through the cooperation of the sororities and fraternities on campus.”
Current President of Beta Xi Li Lu said the event was a place where the NYU LGBTQ community could feel comfortable. He added that the fraternity wanted the drag race to be seen as way for LGBTQ youth to gain support through laughter
“This event is dear to my heart because going through the coming out process is hard, and having a safe and comfortable environment is key to making the transition easier,” Lu said.
Steinhardt senior Paige Brot, who has attended the event for the past four years, said she enjoyed the energy of the contestants on stage.
“I was inspired by the bravery and charisma each of the contestants had when they performed on stage,” Brot said. “They represented the LGBTQ community through their entertaining acts and supported a great charity.”
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, March 30 print edition. Email Lexi Faunce at [email protected]