Healing Power of DragCon LA 2023
Updated: Jul 20
“CELEBRATE THE HEALING POWER OF DRAG” WORLD OF WONDER AND ACLU’S DRAG DEFENSE FUND CLOSES IN ON $1.4M, WITH $40,000 RAISED IN TWO DAYS AT RUPAUL’S DRAGCON LA
EVENT SAW LARGEST SINGLE-DAY ATTENDANCE IN DRAGCON HERSTORY
[Los Angeles, CA - May 13, 2023] Emmy ® Award-winners RuPaul and World of Wonder (“RuPaul’s Drag Race,” “Million Dollar Listing,” “The Eyes of Tammy Faye”) hosted the annual RuPaul’s DragCon at the Los Angeles Convention Center this weekend. Throughout the weekend, the ACLU had a presence at the convention to raise awareness and donations for the first-of-its-kind Drag Defense Fund, encouraging fans to donate and support.
As drag performers face increasing threats and censorship, World of Wonder recently created the fund with a donation from MTV and “RuPaul’s Drag Race” to support the ACLU’s LGBTQ rights work. Coming out of the weekend, the fund has reached nearly $1.4M, thanks in part to the $40,000 raised during the two day convention. At the ceremonious ribbon cutting to open the convention, Ru encouraged attendees to “celebrate the healing power of drag” and donate to the cause.
RuPaul said: “This weekend, our tribe came together for the most joyful and spectacular RuPaul’s DragCon ever. Once again, our talented queens from around the world showed us what love, light and courage look like.”
World of Wonder co-founders Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato said: “Love, kindness and fun is what DragCon is all about. Thank you to the beautiful attendees and dazzling queens who joined us. It is a joy and a privilege to be a part of creating a space where all are welcome.”
Created by RuPaul and World of Wonder Productions, RuPaul’s DragCon is a family-friendly event welcoming attendees from around the world to kiki with their favorite drag queens and pop culture stars in a creative and inclusive environment. The drag and pop culture extravaganza is the world’s largest celebration of drag culture that brings all the charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to tens of thousands of attendees, with 150 of the world’s top drag queens from 12 countries mixing and mingling with fans of all backgrounds.
RuPaul himself DJ’ed two dance party sets for all attendees to enjoy. The Main Stage included live runway performances, a fashion show, fan competitions and makeovers, and electrifying performances by “RuPaul’s Drag Race” stars Mrs. Kasha Davis, Victoria Scone, Rita Baga among others. Other happenings on the convention show floor included fan signings, the ever-popular Kids’ Zone sponsored by the Teletubbies (who also gave iconic performances throughout the weekend), and over 200 exhibitor booths offering everything from interactive fan experiences, exclusive merch, beauty products, apparel, art and more.
The event also included fan-favorite panels, reuniting select casts for the franchise. WOW Presents Plus original series “Bring Back My Girls” returned for a second year, bringing audiences these exclusive DragCon panel conversations with the casts of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars S6, Drag Race UK (S3 & S4), and Canada’s Drag Race S3 hosted by TV personality and LGBTQ+ activist Ts Madison.
World of Wonder made major franchise announcements out of the convention, including the news that “Drag Race Mexico” will be hosted by beloved queens Lolita Banana and Valentina. The queens themselves announced the news from the Main Stage. World of Wonder also announced a full lineup of original programming coming to WOW Presents Plus in 2023. This slate includes a series following LA’s hottest creative collective, The House Of Avalon, “AVALON TV,” “Keeping Up With Krystal Versace,” “After Shave With Danny Beard,” “Bring Back My Girls” Season 2, “Sissy That Psyche,” and the return of “Tongue Thai’d” Season 2.
The convention featured Queens and other celebrity talent for performances, meet and greets, panels and more, including: RuPaul, S15 winner Sasha Colby, Yvie Oddly, Lala Ri, Salina EsTitties, Jimbo, Alaska, Pangina Heals, Jaida Essence Hall, Heidi N Closet, Sugar & Spice, Priyanka, Alexis Michelle, Baga Chipz, Mrs. Kasha Davis, Daya Betty, Kandy Muse, Lolita Banana, Gisèle Lullaby, Mo Heart, and more.
On Saturday evening, World of Wonder's WOWIE Awards took place to honor the very best in artistry, activism, entertainment, and more. This year's nominees feature the trailblazers, innovators, and legendary icons that made us go “WOW” in 2023. A full winners list is available HERE.
World of Wonder looks forward to bringing DragCon back to Los Angeles and the UK in 2024 with tickets on sale soon.
About World of Wonder
World of Wonder (WOW) has reshaped international pop culture, earning 30 Emmys, inspiring two Oscars, creating global network WOW Presents Plus across 190 territories, and bringing drag culture to the world stage via RuPaul’s Drag Race and DragCon. WOW’s pioneering television portfolio includes other smash-hit franchises like Million Dollar Listing. Their film division WOW Docs produces groundbreaking documentaries including Mapplethorpe: Look at the Pictures, Party Monster, and The Eyes of Tammy Faye. WOW also operates YouTube channel WOWPresents, music label World of Wonder Records, the WOW Podcast Network, and year-round international live events. Co-founders Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato have been profiled in Variety’s Reality TV Impact Report. Honors for their trailblazing work include the IDA Pioneer Award, Realscreen’s Global 100 list, and the OUT 100. In 2022, World of Wonder was ranked #2 among film and TV powerhouses in Fast Company’s World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies.