RuPaul Drag Race UK Tour Edinburgh: All the words you need to know from the drag dictionary

'It's almost time to werk it, gurl!' If that means nothing to you, it's a clue you need to gen up on your drag dictionary ahead of the stars of RuPaul's Drag Race UK sashaying into Edinburgh with the Official Series 3 Tour, later this year.

By Liam Rudden
Tuesday, 26th July 2022, 3:24 pm
Updated Wednesday, 27th July 2022, 3:28 pm

Visiting the Edinburgh Playhouse on September 9, all 12 queens from the third series of the popular talent show​ will bring a touch of ​glitz​, ​glamour​ and no doubt a barrow-load of attitude​ with​ fans ​warned to expect the unexpected​.

The drag royalty entertaining at the Greenside Place venue will feature series three finalists, Kitty Scott-Claus, Krystal Versace, Vanity Milan and Ella Vaday. The tour follows the sold out Official Series 2 Tour, which traversed the UK earlier in the year.

Ben Hatton, Director of Theatre Touring for producers Cuffe and Taylor, says, “RuPaul’s 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.”

RuPaul's Drag Race UK Series 3 Tour

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    To get audiences in the mood for the occasion, the queens have released their very own drag dictionary, or ‘dragtionary’. Here are some of the words you will need to know before seeing the show.

    Beat: To apply your makeup flawlessly. Used in a sentence: “Girl, you beat your face so good, I can't stop looking at it.”

    Charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent: The four elements that a queen has to have to take Drag Race crown. It's also an acronym for cunt. Used in a sentence: “You're going to need to use all your charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to win this challenge.”

    Condragulations: The drag version of congratulations. Used in a sentence: “Condragulations you are the winner of this week's challenge.”

    Dragmother: Queens on the show often refer to their 'drag families', the families they have made with other queens and members of the gay community when their own families wouldn't accept them. Dragmothers are the queens who took them under their wings and taught them the art of drag. Used in a sentence: “Alyssa Edwards is dragmother to Gia Gunn, Laganja Estranja and Shangela.”

    Eleganza extravaganza: A runway category in which queens must serve pure elegance. Used in a sentence: “The category is: eleganza extravaganza.”

    Fish: Basically refers to looking/feeling ultra-feminine. To “serve fish” or to feel “fishy” is to be extra girly. Used in a sentence: “Tonight I am serving pure fish on the runway.”

    Gag: For something to be so amazing that you have an actual physical reaction. Used in a sentence: “Her dress on the runway was so good it had me gagging.”

    Gurl/girl: The term queens use to address other queens, usually when they're about to read them. Used in a sentence: “Gurl, look how orange you look.”

    Lip sync for your life: The bottom two queens from each week lip sync against each other. Whoever impresses Ru the least is eliminated. Used in a sentence: “The time has come for you to lip sync for your life. Good luck...”

    Read: To criticise or critique. In Drag Race, the act of ‘reading’ is meant to be savage and hilarious. RuPaul opens the ‘library’ where queens read each other once a season. This has spawned the catchphrase, ‘Reading is fundamental’. Used in a sentence: “I'm sick of the judges reading me for my outfits.”

    Realness: To do something authentically. Often on the runway the queens are ‘serving XX realness’. Used in a sentence: “Tonight on the runway I'm serving Vivienne Westwood realness.”

    Sashay away: RuPaul tells eliminated contestants to ‘sashay away’, in what is now one of the show's most iconic catchphrases. Used in a sentence: “I'm sorry my dear, but the time has come for you to sashay away.”

    Serve: One of the most important terms in the Drag Race vernacular; to serve is to use your look to offer the judges something amazing. Used in a sentence: “Tonight on the runway I am serving executive realness.”

    Shade: Insulting someone in a sly, under-the-radar manner (different to a read). Used in a sentence: “She was throwing serious shade when she insinuated you let the team down this challenge.”

    Shantay, you stay: The flip-side of ‘sashay away’, this is how Ru tells a queen who survived the lip sync that she is still in the competition. Used in a sentence: “Shea Couleé, shantay you stay.”

    Sickening: For something to be so incredibly good that it actually makes you sick. Used in a sentence: “Did you see her Beyoncé impression? It was sickening.”

    Sissy that walk: To hit the runway like a supermodel. (Sissy That Walk is also the name of a single from Ru's 2014 album Born Naked, which is played while the queens walk the runway throughout the series). Used in a sentence: “Now sissy that walk.”

    Tea/tee/T: T refers to gossip. To spill the tea is basically to just talk shit together. Used in a sentence: “Are you free for drinks tonight? I've got some tea to spill.”

    Tuck: Tucking is the art of taping/pulling back your junk while in drag. Used in a sentence: “Go backstage and untuck.”

    Work/Werk: To own it on the runway. Used in a sentence: “You'd better work it...”

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