The news broke all over Twitter and Facebook Monday night around 9:30pm PST that RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 2 star and New York based drag performer had suddenly died at age 27. That news was confirmed early Tuesday morning with LOGO TV, the cable network that broadcasts the popular drag competition show, issuing a statement:
“Logo is profoundly saddened by the passing of Antoine Ashley who fans around the world knew and loved as Sahara Davenport. He was an amazing artist and entertainer who’ll be deeply missed by his Logo family. Our hearts and prayers go out to his family, especially his boyfriend Karl, in their time of need.”
“Boyfriend Karl” is better known as RPDR Season 3 runner-up Manila Luzon. The drag couple were beloved members of the RPDR drag family and frequently performed together at events internationally. Both performers also were active in the “drag music” scene, releasing dance tracks on iTunes.
Manila Luzon is scheduled to appear at Q Night Club this Saturday, October 6 to inaugurate the new event night, “Playground” which is also set to star internationally known DJ, Hunee from Berlin, Germany. According to Q Creative Director Kevin Kauer, they have contacted Manila’s reps to determine if she will be able to make the event.
Mr. Ashley was a classically trained dancer with a BFA from Southern Methodist University who dazzled audiences with his dance based drag performances. Sahara Davenport placed 7th in Season 2 of RPDR and the performer was scheduled to take part in December’s “Drag Cruise” from Al & Chuck Travel with other cast mates from all four seasons of RPDR.
No word on cause of death. Manila Luzon’s last post on her Facebook fanpage, was time stamped Sunday and stated simply, “I love him so much” possibly indicating that Mr. Ashley had fallen mortally ill some time before his death on Monday.
More as it develops.