The Art of Drag – Edge Hill University in Lancashire is offering the first course in the UK on drag queens

A British university is offering the first ever degree course on how to be a drag queen
Senior Lecture Mark Edward as Gale Force (Picture: Mercury Press)

Meet ‘Gale Force’ – a university lecturer bringing the first ever degree course in performing in drag to Britain.

Gale Force (aka Mark Edward) is going to be teaching drama students at Edge Hill University, in Lancashire ‘The Art of Drag’ and showing them how there is more to being a drag queen than a wig and high heels.

Included in the module will be lip-synching, costume, the use of humour and the theories and histories of areas such as gay and lesbian theatre, transgender identities, HIV and AIDS.

Students given the chance to learn to be a drag queen include third year students studying Performing Arts, Dance or Drama from next year.

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PIC BY MERCURY PRESS - (PICUTRED: MARK EDWARD, SENIOR LECTURER AND DRAG QUEEN) A University is set to offer the UK's first course in drag. Edge Hill University on Merseyside are offering the course on Drag Queens and Drag Kings from January. It'll be open to third year performing arts students and will cover drag, gender and sexual identity. The course is being led by Senior Lecturer and Drag Queen in his own right Mark Edward...SEE MERCURY COPY
Senior Lecture Mark Edward while not in drag (Picture: Mercury Press)

Students taking the subject will examine the relationships between performance, gender, sexuality and identity, the university said.

Mr Edward said: ‘Despite the fact that performers have been “dragging up” since Shakespearean times, this module is completely unique in exploring the crossing of boundaries in terms of gender and performance.’

‘The 2010 Education Act meant that providers of education, including universities, must go beyond non-discrimination based on gender, and in fact, promote equality, and Edge Hill has a fantastic reputation in promoting minority groups in terms of sexual identities.’

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CXTD0D entrance to edge hill university main building ormskirk lancashire uk united kingdom
Edge Hill University, Lancashire (Picture: Alamy)

He added: ‘As part of undergraduate studies, this module not only explores drag as a highly camp performance art, it also engages with complex gender, feminist and queer theory to explore the social and political implication of ‘doing gender’ in performance.

‘Drag as a performance art form has seen a relative decline in the past decade, yet there are new and exciting emerging forms coming through which makes this module all the more relevant to performance contexts.

‘There’s a lot more to drag studies than wigs, make-up and high heels!’

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24 April 2015 | 12:06 pm – Source:


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