Fenton Bailey & Randy Barbato Explain Why Drag Queens are the 'Pop Stars of the 21st Century': Watch
World of Wonder founders and RuPaul’s Drag Race executive producers Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato caught up with Billboard Pride during RuPaul’s DragCon 2018, chatting about the show’s recent Emmy win and why they believe that drag is for everyone.
Speaking of taking home the Emmy for outstanding reality competition program for Drag Race, Barbato tells Billboard Pride editor Patrick Crowley, “It’s funny, because RuPaul’s Drag Race, we’re actually just editing season 11 -- it’s taken 10 seasons to come home with the gold, but I think that’s kind of what’s special about all of this.”
“We’ve loved drag for a hundred years, back in the '80s in the East Village at the Pyramid Club,” he continues. “And I think our love for it and our support of it has been unwavering, and it’s great to bring the rest of the world along with us.”
Asked about the potential of even further growth for Drag Race and DragCon, Bailey responds that he thinks that drag is for everyone. “There may have been a perception that it’s a niche thing,” he says. “Perhaps because it’s LGBTQ, whatever. It doesn’t matter.
“You’re born naked and the rest is drag, and on that basis… drag is something that all of us, fundamentally, can relate to,” he adds. “We get out of bed in the morning, we put on our clothes, we create our identity. That’s drag, and so drag is for everyone.”
In the interview, Barbato also notes that he believes that drag queens are the “pop stars of the 21st century,” explaining that what is happening now with drag is similar to what happened with hip-hop 25 years ago.
“I think the sky’s the limit,” he explains. “I think we’re just starting to get a taste of what’s possible. There are so many drag artists all over the world, and I think we’re gonna see more and more of it.”
You can watch the full video interview with Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato above.