RuPaul’s Drag Race UK Series Two Tour reviewed: does the live performance live up to the popular TV show?

RuPaul’s Drag Race UK hits the stage - but does it live up to its TV incarnation?

Lawrence Chaney performing at Sheffield City Hall on 14 February.Lawrence Chaney performing at Sheffield City Hall on 14 February.
Lawrence Chaney performing at Sheffield City Hall on 14 February.

In a world where our favourite TV shows are now hitting the road, is it worth switching the good old telly for the theatre stage?

Drag Race UK is far from the first to monetise the success of a popular show, with hit shows such as Strictly Come Dancing and The X Factor breaking into the market over recent years.

Just as its predecessors have done, the Drag Race UK show seamlessly blended content from the TV season with new acts to keep existing fans and newcomers happy.

Cherry  Valentine and Tayce performing. Cherry  Valentine and Tayce performing.
Cherry Valentine and Tayce performing.

Is RuPaul’s Drag Race UK Series Two Tour worth seeing?

We attended Sheffield City Hall on 14 February and the two-hour performance was made up of a wide variety of acts - from lip-syncing to comedy sketches, there was never a dull moment.

The show began with reigning queen Lawrence Chaney introducing the drag stars - his personality was just as infectious and commanding in real life as it was on the screen.

All of the competitors from season two were involved in the show and each queen performed in the order that they had been voted off.

Some queens such as A’Whora and Bimini Bon-Boulash had the audience dancing along to their upbeat routines, but others such as Ginny Lemon and Sister Sister chose to wow the crowds with their unique sense of comedy.

It was an intense show filled with inside references that would be hard to keep up with if you were not a hardcore fan of the TV show.

But the production value alone is worth experiencing, even if you don’t know the ins and outs of the drag world.

The outfits were truly stunning and the dancers deserve huge credit as the same four men tirelessly performed with each drag queen with only one 15 minute interval break.

Where it didn’t quite work

There are some moments in the show however that even I, an avid fan, did not quite understand.

Ellie Diamond, known for her creative looks on the show, spent her time on stage performing a rather odd version of The Cat in the Hat - with dancers dressed as Thing One and Thing Two.

Ginny Lemon was admittedly hilarious in some parts, but repeated the same jokes about selling her own merch one too many times.

My other grievance with the show was that the viral hit of season two - ‘UK Hun?’ - did not get its own performance.

There was a 30-second snip of the catchy tune in the final song of the night but it felt disappointing that Lawrence, Bimini, Tayce and A’Whora didn’t give the track its own special moment.

But overall the show was energetic, fast paced and tailor made for Drag Race fans who want to experience their favourite queens up close.

Will there be a tour of season three?

It has proven so popular in fact that season three of Drag Race UK is already getting ready to tour in September this year.

Ben Hatton, director of theatre touring for Cuffe and Taylor, said: “Such was the demand for sales for the first tour when we announced it earlier this year that we have decided to get everything in place for the series three tour now.

“Drag Race UK is an exciting show and we can’t wait to witness what will undoubtedly be many incredible and outrageous nights of live entertainment in venues across the UK.”

The queens of season two performing on stage at Sheffield City Hall. The queens of season two performing on stage at Sheffield City Hall.
The queens of season two performing on stage at Sheffield City Hall.

How to get tickets

For dates and tickets for the remaining Season Two and upcoming Season Three shows click here.

Many shows in the season two tour are now completely sold out but these dates still have some availability.

RuPaul’s Drag Race UK Series Two tour dates

  • Llandudno - Venue Cymru on 16 February, 22 March.
  • London - The London Palladium on 28 February, 1 March, 24 March.
  • Derby - Arena on 25 March.
  • Birmingham - Symphony Hall on 26 March.
  • Bristol - Hippodrome on 27 March.
  • Bradford - St. George’s Hall on 29 March.
  • Aberdeen - Music Hall on 30 March.
  • Glasgow - SEC Armadillo on 31 March.
  • Ipswich - Regent Theatre on 2 April.
  • Southampton - Mayflower Theatre on 3 April.
  • Nottingham - Royal Concert Hall on 6 April.
  • Newcastle - O2 City Hall on 7 April.
  • Stockton - Globe Theatre on 8 April.
  • Sheffield City Hall on 9 April.
  • Oxford - New Theatre on 11 April.
  • Southend - Cliffs Pavilion on 12 April.
  • Plymouth - Plymouth Pavillions on 14 April.
  • Brighton Centre on 15 April.
  • Newport - ICC on 16 April.
  • Manchester - Opera House on 17 April.

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