Shangela Shares How She Reached Out To RuPaul After Landing Dancing With The Stars, And The Message She Got Back

Shangela on Dancing With The Stars
(Image credit: Disney+)

There are long-running reality competition shows, and then there’s Dancing with the Stars. The beloved series recently wrapped its whopping 31st season, which was available for those with a Disney subscription. One of the celebs to make it to the finale episode was Drag Race icon Shangela, who made history as the first drag performer on the series. And Shangela shared how she reached out to RuPaul after landing Dancing with the Stars, and the message she got back.

Shangela made her debut on RuPaul’s Drag Race back in Season 2, which debuted in 2010. She’d return for the third season, and also made it to the finale of All-Stars 3. Clearly the franchise changed her career forever, and it turns out that Miss Halleloo herself actually reached out to Momma Ru ahead of filming Dancing with the Stars. As she recently shared with E! News:

I reached out to RuPaul to just say ‘Momma, thank you so much for first putting me on Season 2 of RuPaul’s Drag Race. And look at me now.’ She wrote back and said ‘Ladykins, we’re all rooting for you over here. I love you beaucoup.’

How sweet is that? While RuPaul has seen countless drag queens compete throughout the years on Drag Race and its spinoffs, it definitely looks like Shangela made an impression. And as such, the Emmy winning host was pleased to see Shangela make history on Dancing with the Stars– even making it all the way to the grand finale with her partner Gleb Savchenko. 

Dancing with the Stars Season 31 ended this week, with Shangela bringing down the house with her finale freestyle performance, which was an all-out Dragstravaganza featuring fellow Drag Race icons Eureka O’Hara and Laganja Estranja. Gleb Savchenko also got into full drag for that performance. And yes, Shangela provided crispy chicken for head judge Len Goodman on his last episode.

On top of her talents as a performer, Shangela also shone on Dancing with the Stars thanks to her effusive and delightful personality. Indeed, you can see that come out in her interview with E! News at the finale, where she shared her anecdote about RuPaul. Check it out for yourself below,

Shangela didn’t take the Mirrorball Trophy on Dancing with the Stars, coming in fourth place on the Season 31 finale. But for her fans, there’s still opportunities to catch her on TV. Namely with the Emmy winning HBO series We’re Here, which is returning for Season 3. And Shangela serves as both a star and producer on the emotional docuseries, where a trio of famous queens help local queer communities. 

The entire 39th season of Dancing with the Stars is currently streaming on Disney+. Be sure to check out the TV premiere list to plan your next binge watch before the New Year. As Shangela would say: Halleloo!

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.