A&E

Meet three Las Vegas drag stars with unique takes on the exploding genre

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(Left to right) Lynn Troller by Milena DiFiore; Hot Chocolate by Edison G. Productions; Nebraska Thunderf*ck by Arturo Garza.
Courtesy
Jennifer Henry

With a dash of Spaghetti Western bravado and a handful of rainbow-hewn rhinestones, the glittering oasis of Las Vegas is home to a drag culture that redefines the genre. To be a high-profile queen in Vegas, it takes everything you’ve got: celebrity-blessed impersonations, DIY diva know-how and a fearless sense of individuality … or so say these crowned Queens, setting a new standard for daring drag and re-envisioning the sparkling subculture. We now call them to the stage!

Meet our newest comer Angel Alcalá, aka Lynn Troller. A homemade fashionista named for that otherwise characterless wardrobe staple the lint roller, Lynn Troller is always sticky. Whether she’s dolling out peanut butter and jelly sandwiches during one of her infamous Banana Mix performances or pasting craft glitter to her beard and eyebrows, her power to impress with her unconventional aesthetics and ferocious individuality stays with you all night long. That’s how she won the Charlie’s Las Vegas Break Out Star competition back in May 2018. Bedazzled banana costume and bald head notwithstanding, it’s her originality, outrageousness, daring and artistic flourish that makes her the ultimate catawampus canvas, rolling offstage, collecting costume jewelry and fans along the way.

Mackenzie Claude, aka Nebraska Thunderf*ck, was born a star, and she knows it. Las Vegas’ first official drag model (signed by the Envy agency) and a bonafide “glamazon,” the former Marine came sparkling to life on Season 5 of RuPaul’s Drag Race back in 2013. Another fierce queen—male model and dance-pop singer Alaska Thunderf*ck 5000—transformed Claude into a badass blonde babe with a bodacious bod and a faux machine gun to match. Celebrated from her dramatic start, Nebraska flung the doors of the drag world wide open with her sexy small-screen sashay, but she ditched the glossy glamour for a controversial platform that encourages social commentary, stokes political controversy and takes on current events—especially those regarding legal firearms—that has made her the talk of our town and the internet at large.

Larry Edwards is better known as Hot Chocolate to those she’s sweetly scalded as the Mood Director at Piranha—hosting VIPs, schmoozing with the crowd and just generally spreading love and light around. Formerly of Frank Marino’s now-closed stage show Divas Las Vegas, Hot Chocolate has been Vegas’ most acclaimed Tina Turner impersonator for nearly 40 years, officially blessed by the star herself! She won the coveted crown of Ms. Gay America back in 1980, and she’s still rolling on that sugar rush with two generations of queens now inspired by her spirited enthusiasm, dizzying energy and entertainment expertise. Now free from Divas, Hot Chocolate has taken to the road, performing for audiences hungry for the iconic traditions of drag that are still vibrantly alive.

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