Priscilla, Queen of the Desert: A "Queens-land" Musical

In Christine on The Scene by Christine McKellar

Priscilla Preens in the Vegas Desert

red tour

Photo: Joan Marcus

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is a musical by Australian film director-writer Stephan Elliott and Allan Scott. Adapted from Elliott’s 1994 film, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, the musical now playing at the Venetian Hotel is a tale of two drag queens and a transsexual (woman) who travel across the Australian Outback in a bus named “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” to perform a drag show in a remote resort town called Alice Springs. 

The troupe’s costumes are fabulous and the head pieces are outlandishly groovy. The props are colorful, time-dated and quirky; such as a trio of well hung (as in suspended) angels who hover protectively at times over the performers on the stage. Priscilla, Queen of the Desert debuted in Sydney, Australia in 2006 and enjoyed a Broadway debut in 2011. Priscilla received the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Musical as well as two Tony Awards in the costume design categories. The score relies heavily on pop 80s hits and disco is colorfully and enthusiastically revived by the talented cast.

green cast

Photo: Joan Marcus

The musical tells the story of the obstacles the trio encounters on their long dusty journey; a mechanical breakdown, a savage incident of homophobia, and vandalism. They also encounter a group of Aborigines and a convenient, and straight, auto mechanic. The arrival of the group, which now includes the mechanic, at the resort in Alice Springs does nothing to quell the queenish drama; however, in the end, differences are resolved and a dream comes true. 

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is enjoying a limited summer engagement at The Venetian Hotel with nightly performances at 8 p.m. except for Tuesdays. For reservations and discounts on tickets please visit: