Museum of Science and History to host ‘family friendly’ drag show for ‘all ages’ in Memphis

An upcoming event at a Memphis museum makes “Night at the Museum” seem tame despite its “family friendly” label. 

On Sept. 23, Tennessee’s Museum of Science and History is hosting a “Memphis Proud Drag Show & Dance Party,” designated as “family friendly” with “all ages welcomed,” according to its website. 

The event will feature a “diverse cast of performers featuring different styles, expressions, and identities, showcasing some of the infinite ways in which we can manifest the art of drag.” 

For $20, a family will be entertained by male “performers” dressed as cartoonish caricatures of women named “Angel Fartz,” “Barbie Wyre” and “Fendi LaFemme,” to name a few. 

After the drag show, families can join in an “intergenerational dance party, where everyone is invited to come together and dance the night away.” 

While drag shows have typically been entertainment for adults only due to their overtly sexual nature, there is a recent trend of so-called family friendly versions in cities around the country, drawing criticism from many quarters. 

The museum is in fact putting on an adults-only drag event, The museum is also putting on similarly themed events for adults called “Cocktails and Chemistry with the Blue Suede Sisters.” It is advertised as a “one-of-a-kind night of shenanigans that combines cocktails, drag nuns, and science experiments,” where “guests can buy drinks from the cash bar and mingle with the Sisters before going downstairs to perform exciting science experiments under the instruction of Sister Kat Ion and the Blue Suede Sisters.” 

Pride-themed exhibits have also been running all summer at the venue. 

Rise Up” is an exhibit that “examines how the gay rights movement has appropriated the power of public protest and demonstration to get laws changed and shatter stereotypes. “ 

The “Memphis Proud” exhibit “examines the history and culture of the city’s LGBTQ+ population and explores how LGBTQ+ Memphians of different backgrounds and experiences have come together to form thriving communities and provide powerful voices for change and acceptance.”