Former Rupaul Drag Race contestant and America’s #1 Beyonce impersonator Shangela recently got some international exposure when Watanabe Naomi gave him a visit for the Japanese variety show, “Hajimemashite, Nihon no Geinoujin Desu.”
The show consists of Japanese comedians and entertainers going overseas to find other entertainers who have a similar act. Watanabe came to Las Vegas to find the American version of herself, as she is famous for her own Beyonce impersonation. There, she met up with Shangela, who is a famed drag queen and former contest (twice) on Rupaul’s Drag Race. Shangela is also well known for his Beyonce act. The two met up and discussed various things, such as their insecurities and their childhoods. Watanabe ultimately ended up being able to share the stage with Shangela, where they both did their best Beyonce inspired dance moves.
The show erroneously referred to another Rupaul’s Drag Race Contest, Jiggly Caliente, as Japanese. Jiggly Caliente is in fact Filipino. One former contest who is in fact Japanese is Scotty Ichikawa a.k.a. Gia Gunn, who spoke of his childhood experience of doing kabuki on Rupaul’s Drag Race. The show also included an interesting explanation of Shangela’s catchphrase “halleloo” in Japanese.
Watanabe and Shangela’s segment begins at around the 18:00 mark in the video below.