As you all probably know, Miss Ruth N. Nasia has come out swinging and is taking Bloomington by storm, and I gotta be honest with you: it feels amazing. Monday was our first day back at classes here at Indiana University, and coming back to my theatre community has been fantastic. Every single day I’ve had people come up to me to tell me that they love watching Ruth, or they can’t wait to see more of her, or they wish they were 21 already so they could come watch me perform. I really wasn’t expecting all of these incredibly kind compliments, but they’ve only made going back to classes that much nicer. And in another sense, they’ve only made me more determined to leave my mark on this town while I’ve got one year here left. It’s such an exciting time for me right now; I’ve already talked to a couple of photographers about doing some photoshoots, I’ve been told there might be a part for Ruth in a show later this year, and I’ve got so many great performance ideas I want to put in front of people. And honestly? Ruth is a bad bitch. Maybe that sounds cocky or conceited, but if I’m not my own biggest fan, then why would I be doing this?
I watch the videos of my performances back and sometimes I even surprise myself–it’s like once Ruth takes the stage she’s in control and Ryan takes the backseat to let her do her thing. It gives me the thrill I know so well of live performance, but it’s almost more exciting in a way… maybe because 1) I get to dress like a beautiful glamazon woman or 2) I get to collect that $$$ right then and there. A little extra cash money never hurt nobody. Either way, I’ve only dipped my toes in so far but I can’t wait to delve further and further as the year goes on. It’s also exciting to be able to watch my progress, especially when it comes to makeup. I’d say I’m probably proudest of how far I’ve come in that aspect, after basically starting from scratch last semester.
It’s also amazing to find that I had all of this inside of me the whole time. I’ve always been pretty confident in my abilities, but I think Ruth has been waiting to break out of me for so much longer than I knew. What I love so much about drag is that I get to embody all of the fierceness of the amazing women I’ve idolized for so long–singers, actresses, models, even my own mother. I think a lot of people have misconstrued ideas of why men do drag, often thinking that they really want to be women underneath it all, but it’s not like that for me, and for many other cis male drag queens (though drag queens do in fact come in all genders and orientations). I do drag because I love and admire women so much; I’ve looked up to so many fantastic women in my lifetime because there’s something so powerful to me in what they can do. And now, it’s like I get to experience that power for myself with Ruth.
Ruth is all the best parts of who Ryan is. All the crazy ideas I have in my head, I’m finally getting to put on stage, and the responses I’m getting only make me want to keep going. And you know what? It’s really, really unfortunate that there are people in my life that don’t support Ruth. Is a man putting on a dress and some makeup really that wrong, when white supremacists are having rallies nationwide, and we’re basically watching naziism come back into fashion? I just feel like there are so many terrible things happening in the world right now, and if your focus is on drag being different and unnatural, maybe you should take a step back and reprioritize. The thing is, at the end of the day Ruth and Ryan are the same person. And I just feel like if you’re missing out on who Ruth is, then you’re never going to be able to really know Ryan. I’d hate for anyone to miss out on the gifts I have inside of me just because they don’t understand drag. And if these people never see a show of mine, then that’s on them, not me. Like Mama Ru says, what other people think about me is none of my damn business. I hope some of those people get the chance to read this someday. Because you know what?
I’m really good at this.
Like actually. I know what I’m doing (kind of), and I’m only going to keep getting better.
I promise to anyone reading this, if you haven’t gotten the chance to see Ruth perform yet, you’re missing out. She knows how to give it 110%, and always makes sure the audience takes something away from each performance.
So… what’s next? Well, I’m going to try to keep performing at The Backdoor pretty much bi-weekly from here on out, and I’ll always be posting on Facebook about what days I’ll be there, so look out for that! And if you aren’t 21, I’ve been thinking of ways to make Ruth more accessible for you guys, and maybe I’ll try and do a backyard drag show sometime. Or maybe even somewhere in the theatre building, if they’ll let me. Who knows. The year is full of possibilities! But until then, you can keep up with me on Instagram at @ruth.n.nasia and I’m probably going to make a YouTube channel soon where I can start posting performance videos. I’ll keep y’all updated.
Anywho, if you made it this far, thanks for taking the time out of your day to read this. It means a lot 🙂
Ryan & Ruth