• Kristyn Burtt

Carson Kressley & Ross Matthews Reveal the 'RuPaul's Drag Race' Influence on Dance

Updated: Jul 29


RuPaul's Drag Race is more than a cable-TV hit on VH1. It's a game-changer for how society has viewed the drag culture. If you've been paying attention to So You Think You Can Dance, you've even seen the influence with contestants like Laganja Estranja and on choreographers like Mark Kanemura.


Dance Dish was on the red carpet at the 2019 Paley Fest at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles celebrating the 11 seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race. While we were there, judges Ross Matthews and Carson Kressley talked about the effect the show has had on dance and choreography.


More: Warren Carlyle Has Broadway & Hugh Jackman Ahead, But What About 'SYTYCD?'


"It's huge. If you go to a mainstream concert like Ariana Grande or anybody, they are doing death drops and things from Voguing from ball culture and drag culture," Kressley shared. "You see it in mainstream and hip-hop dancing."


Matthews even pointed out that choreographer Todrick Hall's work has been a key component in the last two seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race.


"When we have Todrick choreographing these live numbers, dance becomes a big part of the key to winning the show," explained Matthews. "These queens are tested on so many different skillsets from fashion to comedy to acting to dancing. Each one is crucial to winning."


Matthews even gave a shout out to a RuPaul's Drag Race alumni, Laganja Estranja, who made a huge impact on Season 15 of SYTYCD.


WATCH: Laganja Estranja Talk About the "SYTYCD' Experience on 'To The Pointe'


"And [we saw] Laganja Estranja on So You Think You Can Dance," he said. "She did great!"


The big question now is whether fans will see Matthews heading over to ABC to do a little ballroom on Dancing with the Stars.


"There have only been 28 seasons, maybe they will finally ask me," laughed Matthews.

As a Season 13 DWTS contestant, Kressley didn't buy that Matthews hadn't been asked yet.


"I find that hard to believe," he said to Matthews. "It's the same woman [Deena Katz] who does Big Brother."


More: Sharna Burgess Finds a New Voice on 'Dancing With the Stars Australia'


As the Season 1 Celebrity Big Brother runner-up, Matthews wasn't convinced he should do DWTS.


"I would have to think about it,' he mulled. "I have my own skillset."


"You can't be worse than I was, I have no rhythm," chimed in Kressley. "You will have a good journey and good costumes... and you can serve a good package."


"I don't think I've ever cried on television," revealed Matthews.


"I think the Rhumba could do it," concluded Kressley.

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