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A Proud Mary Does Pride Month

After 30 years of drag, Dana Roxanne’s wheels keep on turning.

Dana Roxanne (photo by Seferino Garcia)

Don’t do a double-take or think you’re hallucinating—if you think you see Tina Turner performing at a local bar, it’s just Dana Roxanne (formerly known as Roxanne Collins). The Houston icon is a dead-ringer for the Queen of Rock ’n Roll, and her tribute act has taken her places she never imagined—including meeting the real Tina. Although Roxanne is retiring after 30 years of drag, she’s still putting her image to good use and taking on a full-time new career as a celebrity impersonator.

Pronouns?
She, her, and hers.

Hometown?
Whistleville, Georgia.

Inner avatar?
The phoenix. No matter what, I rise.

Drag birthday?
July 1991.

What does Pride Month mean to you?
Pride means unity, chosen family, and courage—unapologetic [living] at its finest.

What’s your special title associated with Houston Pride?
I was crowned Miss Gay Pride Houston 2019, and I had the honor (due to the pandemic) to reign for a second year as Miss Gay Pride Houston 2020. I step down on June 19. That’s officially my last pageant, so this step down will be full of emotion.

Any other pageant titles?
Besides Miss Gay Pride Houston, I have had the blessing to have numerous titles over my 30-year career—most notably Miss Gay Houston USofA, Miss Houston Continental, Miss Gay Southern States, Miss Texas Continental, and Miss Black Trans Houston. I was in the top 10 at Miss Gay World, and first runner-up to Miss Gay Universe. My most cherished title was winning the International Hanes Totally Tina Contest.

That must have been a grueling contest.
I have been a Tina Turner tribute artist for 29 of my 30 years. Winning the Hanes Totally Tina Contest was my highest honor. I competed against 199 other contestants from all around the world. Only two drag queens made the final 30 (myself and Hot Chocolate). The prize package included an opportunity to go backstage and meet her. Hearing Tina Turner tell me I was beautiful was the only reassurance I ever needed to validate my beauty.

What do you think the future of drag will be?
The future of drag is now. Anyone who knows me knows that giving new entertainers a platform to perform has always been a passion of mine.

Any tips for up-and-coming drag performers?
Integrity equals longevity. Follow your heart, not the crowd.

What is the most important accessory that a drag performer should have at all times?
A good attitude. Nobody wants to tip or work with a Bitter Betty.

#teamCher or #teamDonnaSummer?
Cher.

Plans for the summer?
Last year, when we couldn’t go to bars, I had a few highly successful online illusion concerts. I got messages from all over asking if I would come to their cities when shows returned. So I’m in the process of putting together a tour to go to some of those cities. I’m saying goodbye to Roxanne Collins the drag queen, and hello to Dana Roxanne the full-time celebrity impersonator. I’m nervous, I’m anxious, and most of all I’m excited to see where this lane change will take me. Going full time impersonating my muses is something I had been thinking about, and now seems to be the perfect time. Here’s to the next 30 years!

Follow Dana Roxanne on Facebook and Instagram.

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Sam Byrd

Sam Byrd is a freelance contributor to Outsmart who loves to take in all of Houston’s sights, sounds, food and fun. He also loves helping others to discover Houston’s rich culture. Speaking of Houston, he's never heard a Whitney Houston song he didn't like.
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