Erica Andrews…Global Beauty!!!

You would have to see her to believe her. She is simply…amazing. Gorgeous, contained, calm and professional. One part Miss Universe, one part 1940’s screen gem and one part, well…unbelievable! One of the most incredible entertainers of our time. We’ve watched her from afar for so long and recently we got a chance to get up close and personal with the one and only Erica Andrews!

1. How was Erica Andrews born?
Erica became Erica Andrews when Tandi Andrews made her daughter.

2. What has been your greatest accomplishment to date?
In my personal life, my family’s support. In my professional life, a consistent career in doing what I love most; pageants, drag and being an entertainer.

3. Who are three celebrities that inspire you?
There are lots in so many ways but the first three that come to mind are Cher, Penelope Cruz AND Ellen Degeneres.

4. What are all of the titles you have won and which one meant the most?
All of them. (National Entertainer of the Year, Universal Show Queen, Miss International Queen in Thailand, Miss Continental and Miss USofA…to name a few!)

5. During your interview for National Entertainer of the Year, which was priceless, you mentioned eloquently, the importance of professionalism.
How important is professionalism in the entertainment industry and what advice would you give people just starting?
Being professional in any business is key. In some businesses you have the opportunity to slack, but not in this business. You snooze you lose! There is always a girl waiting to get in your pumps, so stay focused and don’t slack!!! Be on time!!

6. What inspired your winning talent for National Entertainer of the Year?
Joan Crawford has always been a star that has amazed me by her dedication and her blunt approach, so I mixed some of Faye’s work in Mommie Dearest with a little drama from another fav(Shirley Bassey) AND Waa Laa!!

7. Do you consider yourself a “drag queen” and if so at what point did this change?
I consider myself an entertainer.

8. Who are the three greatest female illusionists of all time?
Tandi Andrews, Naomi Sims And Michael Andrews, Just to name a few.

9. Who are the three greatest current female illusionists?
Please don’t ask me that…

10. What is something we wouldn’t know by looking at you?
I play volleyball and I garden.

11. If you could only listen to one CD for the rest of your life, and it couldn’t be mixed, what would it be?
Louis Armstrong-What a Wonderful World.

12. You win $300 Million in the lottery tomorrow and have to donate half to a charity. Which charity and why?
Homeless children in America. I ran away from home and struggled. I was never homeless but I got to see what it could have been. I feel that we need to take care of our own problems in our own country first.

13. We think you might be one of the most beautiful women to have ever graced this Earth. What is beneath the beauty that most people don’t see?
Thank you. I’m humble and very respectful. When I’m home I like to relax, no make-up, heels or fancy clothes. I just like to be as simple as possible.

14. Tell us about your family’s support or lack thereof regarding your being transgendered?
My sister has always been my best friend. She always supports me and loves me unconditionally. My mother was never that shocked by my decision to be happy, she just needed to learn about it. My brothers are closer to me now more than ever. It’s all good.

15. What do you think the biggest political or social issue related to transgendered people is today?
They don’t know where to put us!

16. What is the sexiest city in the world? Sexiest club? Sexiest hotel? Sexiest beach?
Paris! TAO BAR in New York. And I find the W Hotel exotic! Cancun beaches for sure!

17. If you had $200,000 to spend on only one designer, who would you choose?
Valentino Garavani.

18. What are your top five favorite movies of all time?
Breakfast at Tiffany’s, All About Eve, Mommie Dearest, Pretty Woman AND Amores Perros(or any movie by Pedro Almodovar).

19. What are any three musicians, movies or actresses that inspire the illusion of Erica Andrews?
Raquel Welch, Sofia Loren, Uruala Andress and more recently Ninel Conde and Sofia Vergara.

20. What differences would your fans find interesting about the differences about Erica on stage and Erica at home?
Day and Night!

21. You have been in several movies, Ticked Off Trannies with Knives and Trantasia. Tell us about those experiences.
TOTWKwas so much fun because I knew all of the girls and I could relate to my character(Emma Grashen). In TRANTASIA I got to meet some of the most beautiful transsexual ladies and I got to share a little of my day to day life on film. It was a great experience!

22. Are you in a relationship and if not, what would it take for someone to be your Prince Charming?
I’m waiting to get butterflies in my belly…that’s how I’ll know!

23. Since we ask everyone…boxers, briefs, jockstraps…or nothing at all?
I don’t discriminate!

Thanks Erica…All our best in the future…
Like always…
Eyes Open, We’re Watching!

(All pictures with permission of Erica Andrews and most by Kristofer Reynold’s Photography per Erica Andrews)

Cassandra Cass…Princess of Trantasia and Wild Things!!!

Part angel, part bad-ass biker girl…lots of trouble mixed in with a heart of gold…how could you not love the amazingly beautiful Cassandra Cass. She was first highlighted in the documentary Trantasia and will be starring in the upcoming reality television show, Wild Things! It would seem as if this were only the beginning for this rising starlet!

1. How do you define yourself in society?
Hmmm…that’s a hard one. I really just look at myself as a person chasing her dreams. I really don’t like labels, they can be sooo confining…

2. How do you define your career?
I really look at myself as an entertainer. There are many forms, such as acting, modeling, designing and I really enjoy creating and being artistic.

3. How did you come up with your name?
My mothers name was SANDRA and my given name was CASEY. I’ve always loved Greek mythology and it just fit..My drag mother, when I was up and coming, was DENA CASS so CASSANDRA CASS just fit so well..

4. On Trantasia you seem to have a realism and a sense of humor that keeps you grounded. How important is having a sense of humor in the entertainment business?
OMG if couldn’t laugh at myself I would have given up a long time ago..There are so many ups and downs and sometimes you’re like “”WHY am I DOING THIS” but then when you see the finished product you’re like WOW I can’t believe I was a part of that!! What a dream come true..

5. What was the greatest experience you had while shooting Trantasia and at the pageant?
TRULY the sisterhood. Overall everyone was really great to each other. We knew we were part of something bigger than US and there really was a POSITIVE ENERGY…

6. What was the most humorous or most embarrassing thing that happened?
SWIMSUIT COMPETITION…The shoes I was wearing had laces that twisted all the way up to the knee and my DRESSER was more concerned about her hair than properly tying them. When I was walked on the stage they came undone and twisted around my ankle’s, tripping me. I actually fell off the side of the stage. That certainly didn’t help my chances to get into the top ten!!!….

7. Do you think transgendered people were well represented by Trantasia?
Overall yes. We wear seen as SHOWGIRLS who where in charge and and chasing their dreams.. most of the time we are seen as hookers doped up and HOPELESS, which really pisses me off. It’s time the media gave us more POSITIVE REPRESENTATION!!….

8. What can we look forward to in the new television show “Wild Things”?

“WILD THINGS” is by the same people who made TRANTASIA. It follows ME, MARIA ROMAN and TIARA RUSSELL on a road trip and a mission.. Maria’s brother was very ill at the time so we traveled around to very small towns and worked WILD and CRAZY jobs to raise money for his medical care..OMG we worked as BULL RIDER’s, sold HOT DOGS to CLUELESS construction workers, partied in biker bars. We even trained to be boxers. It’s very The Simple Life but with BIGGER BOOBS, HAIR and BOOTY!!!!..and yes we had some BIG ASS FIGHTS…THE show is TRULY AMAZING..I can’t wait for everyone to see it here in the stats!! Ohhhh did I mention, we traveled around in a broke-down Winnebago! …TRULY funny stuff!!!..

9. What are three movies that have greatly impacted you either personally or the image you create?
Pretty Woman, Barbwire and Grease….Yes I’m kinda a BAD GIRL…with a heart of GOLD!!!…

10. How will you know when you have “made it”?
STILL waiting ..not quite sure yet..ask me when the show comes out..

11. Do you get recognized and what is the overall response?
YES, really great, since TRANTASIA was SHOT I feel my look has improved so it’s kinda like looking at your high school pictures. But people are so great..I love it when people say You should’ve won!!..I’m like honey, it was not my time but I’m ready now for a REMATCH..

12. Who are three people in your field who you aspire to be more like and why?
HONESTLY I just wanna be the best me. That’s really what I aspire to..

13. Who are three mainstream celebrities you would like to have as best friends?
Madonna, Lady Gaga and Will Smith. They ROCK!!!

14. If you could have a 2 hour dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
My momma. I REALLY miss her…R.I.P

15. What is your ultimate career goal?
Just to keep on working and to been seen as the person I am, not just some “”TRANNY””. There’s talent here, I just wanna show it!!.

16. What are some misconceptions about transgendered people or drag queens?
Goodness, there’s a lot of them. I really don’t feed into that. I just hope people take it person by person and stop stereotyping!!

17. What do you think the biggest political or social issue facing transgendered people is today?
WE truly are faceless. Most transgenders don’t want people to know and I get that. There’s a lot of crap that comes with people knowing, but people need to have respect for others. It’s not ok to be mean and there is a lot of abuse that goes on and some people think its ok…I’ve always said if I meet Maury or Jerry Springer I would kick them in their balls..I feel their shows have REALLY set us back!!!

18. What is your relationship like with your family and do they accept your goals in life?
Not very good but I wish them well..

19. What is something we wouldn’t know by looking at you?
That I’m a great cook. It really relaxes me..just love it.

20. Who are your three favorite musicians of all time?
Madonna, Michael Jackson and BARNEY!!!

21. Boxers, briefs, jockstraps…or nothing at all?
NOTHING at all..I’ve worked too hard to get this body!!! Why would I cover it up?..

Thanks Sexy! We can’t wait to see the show!
Eyes Open, We’re Watching!!!

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*Pictures printed with permission of Cassandra Cass.

Drag Mainstreamed…Rupaul’s Tyra Sanchez Interview!

After our interview with Ongina from cycle one of Logo’s Rupaul’s Drag Race, we thought it would be interesting to interview one of the girls from this season…so we chose America’s sweetheart and Diva… Tyra Sanchez…Here’s what she told us!

1. What is your drag name and is there a story behind how you chose your name?

My drag name is Tyra-Symone Sanchez

Tyra means God of Battle. And when it comes to competition, arguments, or debates I will battle until the fight is won!

Symoné comes from Raven Symoné

Sanchez is the family name passed from Fabian Sanchez to Stasha Sanchez to Angelica Sanchez & finally to me!

2. Who are three celebrities who are your role models and have helped mold your image?

Beyoncé, Raven Symoné & Wendy Williams

3. Who are three people in your daily life who have helped mold your image?

Roxxxy Andrews, Jasmine Bonet & Nicole Luv Dupree

4. Do you think you get beauty, brains…or can you have both?

I think you can have both beauty and brains! Lol I’m living proof of that!

5. Why do you refer to yourself as “America’s Sweetheart”?

I refer to myself as America’s Sweetheart because I’m truly a sweet person. I’m there for you whenever you need me. I loveable, huggable & kissable! Lol not to mention I’m very goofy/ditzy at times and at other times well I can come off a little bitchy.

6. So far, what has been your greatest learning experience as a result of being on Rupaul’s Drag Race?

My greatest learning experience is that I learned that not everyone will view you in the same way. Some people will live!!! And others won’t! But don’t live… Because Tyra is to die for!!!

7. If you were the first Drag President of the United States, what three laws would you change?

Though I don’t smoke, I would legalize marijuana. Allow same sex marriage.

8. Do you believe in love?

I do. But I have yet to experience true love.

9. Any thoughts on same-sex marriage?

Honestly it doesn’t bother me, but i do feel as though you should be able to marry whoever you want. Be it guy or girl.

10. You have won several pageants…What pageants have you won and what are your titles?

Miss Dumarr International 2010
Miss Ebony South Carolina 2009
Miss Orlando Pride 2009
Miss Sweetheart Newcomer 2009
Miss Elite Newcomer 2008

11. In mainstream beauty pageants, most contestants must support a cause or have a platform…what would your platform be in a beauty pageant?

My platform would be to display my talents & creativity.

12. What are three movies that have greatly impacted your life?

Lol movies don’t GREATLY impact my life. But they do inspire me to act. Sooo I would say
1. Titanic
2. Precious
3. Set It Off

13. If you could only listen to one CD for the rest of your life and it couldn’t be a mixed CD what would it be?

Beyoncé Dangerously In Love (2003)

14. Three television shows you watch consistently?

Criminal Minds, CSI (LOL All of them!) & The Vampire Diaries

15. Myspace or Facebook and why?

Lol neither! Though I have them both, the extra apps that they’ve added now can be a little annoying. So many request for like kisses and hearts. Like what is that???

16. Three greatest female illusionists in the last 20 years?

Tyra Sanchez, RuPaul, Niesha Dupree

17. Last book you read or a book you are currently reading?

Lol I hate reading! Well I hate reading books, but I could read a couple more people. Lmao!

18. Your motto for life…

When you do what you have always done, you’ll get what you have always gotten.

19. You have mentioned that you have a son. What would you tell him if he came to you as a teenager and told you he wanted to be a drag queen?

As a teenager I would tell him he needs to worry about his education first! The drag would have to wait!

20. Boxers, Brief, Panties or nothing at all?

Boxer briefs! I like to be free but still put away.

Thanks Sexy…And good luck in all you do!!!

Eyes Open, We’re Watching!

Rupaul’s Ongina…Simply Gorgeous!!!

Recently, the boys of raannt were lucky enough to chat it up with Ongina, drag illusionist extraordinaire, most famous for her presence on Season 1 of Rupaul’s Drag Race…Here’s what she had to say…

1. What is your name and what title would you use to describe yourself?
Like my real name? Ryan. My drag name is, as you know, Ongina and a title that would best describe her? GORGEOUS!

2. How did you come up with the name Ongina?
Ongina derives from my middle name “Ong” and using the last three letters of a certain kind of “ina” that I was not blessed with. So instead I made ONGINA!

3. On a recent comedy show you joked that you think you should have won Rupaul’s Drag Race. Do you believe this and what do you think sets you apart from other entertainers?
I did joke about winning, because who doesn’t want to win, but I do understand why I was booted off against Bebe, who happened to be the winner, because she IS who they are looking for. I was far from the typical drag queen and some people still don’t understand why I was on the show since I was very gender bend, but what people have to understand is that there’s a lot of different drag illusions. Mine just happens to be what you see.

4. Who are three entertainers, dead or alive, that you draw inspiration from?
I’m sort of a “now” queen, so I tend to draw inspiration from entertainers like Beyonce (she’s my favorite!!!), Katy Perry for her upbeat, no drama, fun and flirty songs, and more recently, Lady Gaga (but that’s still sort of a love and hate relationship.)

5. What are three television shows you watch consistently?
True Blood, Grey’s Anatomy and more recently, Spartacus! HOT!

6. What are the perks of being a girl?
That I can wear amazing shoes and clothes and feel really beautiful.

7. What are the perks of being a boy?
Who you calling a boy?

8. If you could only celebrate one holiday a year, which would you choose and why?
I’d celebrate Halloween. Forget your birthday, who wants to get old, and forget Christmas its not the same anymore, anyways. And forget about Thanksgiving, thats the gateway to weight gain during the winter season! Halloween is fun, but its sort of like Halloween every time I dress up. Hehe.

9. Any comment on your experience working with Rupaul?
Ru is amazing and the show has put me on a platform that I never expected. If I was given the chance, I would definitely do round 2!

10. Who is someone who you have met as a result of working on Rupaul’s Drag Race that has bettered you as a person that you wouldn’t have otherwise met and why?
I have met my amazing fans that has truly inspire me to keep on! Especially the ones that share the same story as I do. They have helped me fully overcome my demons about being HIV Positive and has helped me live an even happier life than before, being free and not having to hide who I am as a whole person!

11. What is a movie that has profoundly affect your life? Your career image?
I unfortunately don’t watch a lot of movies actually but my I can tell you my top 5 in no particular order: Moulin Rouge, The Fifth Element, To Wong Foo, The Devil Wears Prada, Sex in the City!

12. If you weren’t doing drag what would you be doing?
Well currently, I am a Regional Visual Merchandiser for a retail store based out of NYC. I am in charge of six stores on the West Coast including Texas, Nevada and California! I love my job. I get to be creative in a different level. I truly enjoy every minute of it.

13. What is the last book you read, if any and what are you currently reading?
Last book I read was Aiden Shaw’s The Sordid Truths. I’m in the middle of reading RuPaul’s new book as well.

14. Best city in the world? Best hotel in the world? Best club in the world?
Best city I’ve been in: London and Florence. Best Hotel I’ve been in: The Westin Excelsoir in Florence, Italy. Best Club I’ve been to: My stomping ground, Hiro on Sundays in NYC!!!!

15. We are getting married in August in Vegas. If you were to plan our wedding, what would you plan for us?
Depends on the budget! But CONGRATULATIONS nonetheless! I just better see a wedding dress on someone or I’d throw a fit!

16. If you could change one misconception or cruelty in the world what would you change and why?
Stop the war! Seriously. People don’t need to be dying over issues they can resolve without violence and death!

17. What is your favorite hat you have made or worn and why?
I really love the alligator hat I wore during the reunion special because its so couture! I also like my Barbie hat on the 3rd episode because, well, its a Barbie on my head! I love it! I donated that hat for an equality benefit here in California and made a couple hundred bucks!

18. You shared on Rupaul’s Drag Race that you are HIV+. Your honesty has served as inspiration and hope for a lot of people. What did you gain personally from sharing that on the show?
Like I said above, it has helped overcome my demons and has helped me live a free life. I am no longer afraid and with it, I am able to share my story with other people in hopes that they will find inspiration from it. I’m hoping that by bringing it in the forefront of the media, it will help educate people to protect themselves wether they are negative or positive and live a life worth living!

19. Where will Ongina be in 20 years?
I will be near 50 in 20 years and I don’t know what the future holds for me. I hope to expand my career as Ongina and expand the responsibility I have of being an HIV spokesperson to further raise awareness and continue educating people all over the world about the importance of HIV education and prevention.

20. Boxers, Briefs, Panties or nothing at all?
Boxer briefs!

Thanks Sexy!!! We love you!!!

Eyes Open, We’re Watching!

Kim Kardashian Friend Mike Snedegar Talks With raannt…

We have been lucky enough to become distant friends with Mike Snedegar who has been giving the boys of raannt some great advice on planning parties and events. Mike is the Entertainment Director for the Tao Group in Las Vegas. Mike, who was on the most recent episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, was kind enough to talk to the boys of raannt and give us the inside scoop into his life, his career and the secret life of celebrities!!!

1. What is your name and your position at Tao?
Mike Snedegar – Entertainment Director – TAO Group

2. You are from the Midwest. What do you think about being from the Midwest has prepared you for being successful in Vegas and what would you be doing if you weren’t at Tao?
I consider myself from the south because of Kentucky, some people argue but we always say “where the hospitality of the south begins” . Being form Kentucky I keep things in perspective, and I always remember where I came from. Im simple guy at heart, and I miss the sound of a screen door being shut and the smell of freshly cut grass!

If I weren’t at TAO? Who knows? Probably something to do with celebrities in some form or another.

3. What is the best party you have ever been to and why?
That’s a hard question to answer- but usually the best parties are the ones I cant really talk about!

4. What is the best event you ever planned and why?
My events with Kim Kardashian are some of my faves because we plan them out together as far as theme and décor and seeing everything from my ideas come to life is so cool. but, The Madonna concert afterparty for the confessions tour in 2006 is my favorite – there is no one bigger than her.

5. Best hotel in Vegas?
The Venetian and the Palazzo of course! I also love Mandarin and Trump tower

6. Most interesting celebrity you have ever met?
My favorite celebrity encounters have been Drew Barrymore and Pink, because they were both as nice as I expected them to be which doesn’t always happen

7. Why is Tao successful?
The team and all of the employees behind it make it happen everyday.

8. The boys of raannt are getting married in Vegas in August. If you were planning our wedding, what would you do?
a suite for the weekend, dinners, one night of clubbing, maybe a show, some sightseeing, shopping!

9. What are three vital ingredients in a successful party or event?
theme, details, celebrity

10. Worst party you have ever planned and what went wrong?
I once did a party called WIG OUT in ….like 2005, one of my first events. Where we had people wear wigs…I still laugh about it today. Nothing really went wrong it was just a silly idea….

11. Are you single and how does your job affect, positively or negatively, your dating and being in a relationship?
I am single, and I work a lot of hours, so anyone I would date would have to be understanding of that. Right now im kind of married to my job J

12. Best city in the world?

13. Best club in the world?

14. Soundtrack CD to your life?
music is my favorite thing in the world, couldn’t pick one album….but my current playlist right now is:

A loaded Smile – Adam lambert

Un-thinkable (I’m ready) – Alicia Keys

Lift Me Up – Christina Aguilera

So Happy I Could Die – Lady GaGa

Bulletproof (Nacey remix) – LaRoux

Scream My Name – LMFAO

Street Lights – Kanye West

15. Last book you read and current book you are reading?
Last book I read: IF you have to cry go outside – Kelly Cutrone

Current reading: Are you there vodka, its me Chelsea – Chelsea handler

16. A Movie that profoundly affected your life?
American Beauty, ET, Saving Private Ryan,

17. Television shows you consistently watch?
E! News, Keeping up with the kardashians, project runway, Watch what happens live, kell on earth, dancing with the stars, Larry king live, Anderson cooper 360,

18. Boxers, Briefs or other?
Boxer briefs

Thanks Buddy!!! You Rock!!!

Eyes Open, We’re Watching!!!