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Sahara Davenport was the stage name of Antoine Ashley,[1] (December 17, 1984[1] – October 1, 2012) an American drag queen, reality television personality, classically-trained dancer, and choreographer. She was best known as a contestant on Season 2 of RuPaul's Drag Race. Ashley passed away on October 1, 2012 due to heart failure.

Biography

A native of Dallas, Davenport began his drag career while attending Southern Methodist University. After earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance, he relocated to New York City, where he began performing regularly at many gay bars and nightclubs throughout the city.

Davenport has been seen on television on A&E Network's 15 Films about Madonna, Voom HD's Magnificent Obsessions, and on ABC's daytime soap opera One Life to Live. He was featured in the pilot of Judge Karen as an angry Beyoncé impersonator who sues the paparazzi. Davenport made his art film debut in Kalup Linzy's video-performance piece "Melody Set Me Free," which was shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art. He also appeared in the music videos "Girl Problems" by the group Girl Problems and "Gettin' Over You" by David Guetta and Chris Willis.

Sahara Davenport was known on the show for her incredible performance skills, dance moves, her Whitney Houston impersonation, and her laugh.

Drag Name Origin

She started as Sahara Simone. The name Sahara was inspired by one of her favorite performers, Sierra Nicole Andrews. She thought "I'm black, so I should be the African one, Sahara." She also loved Simone, Nina Simone's daughter, who played Mimi in Rent on the first national tour. She then became a part of a drag family with Kelexis Davenport as her drag mother which she changed her last name too. Davenport came from Divine's role as Dawn Davenport in "Female Trouble".

Track Record(s)

Sahara Davenport
Season Competed: Season 2
Ranking: 7th Place
Mini-Challenges Won: 1 (Ep. 2)
Times as Team Captain: 1 (Ep. 2)
Main Challenges Won: 1 (Ep. 2)
Times in Bottom Two: 3 (Eps. 1, 5, 6)
Episode Eliminated: Episode 6

Personal Life & Death

Before his death, Davenport resided in New York City with his boyfriend Karl Westerberg (Manila Luzon), who was a contestant and runner-up on the Season 3 of RuPaul's Drag Race. Davenport died from heart failure at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore on October 1, 2012.

Manila Luzon says he will continue to carry on Sahara's legacy from this point on. (Interview here)

Memorable Quotes

RuPaul's Drag Race Season 2

  • "I'm Sahara Davenport, I'm 25 years old and I live in New York City!"
  • "WORK!"
  • "Well, my boyfriend's Asian, so I decided to go for the parasol." (Referring to Manila Luzon on the 1st episode.)
  • "I'm happy I survived, but of course I'm sad, you know I sent my friend home." (about Shangela)
  • "Oh my god, I am in a group with like Satan's Baby." (about Tyra Sanchez)
  • "We don't have sex in drag, so no, I'm not Kai-Kai."
  • "What else do you want me to do Ms. Merle?" (Defending her rocker chick performance from Merle Ginsberg's critique)

Mirror Message

  • Live, Love and Believe!!! XO. Sahara (Season 2)

Trivia

  • Sahara was the first contestant in series history to win a mini-challenge, win the role of team captain, and win the main challenge all in one episode. She achieved this in episode 2, "Starbootilicious", and won the mini-challenge with Pandora Boxx who also became a team captain.
  • Sahara only won one main challenge in her entire season.
  • Sahara was the first queen to ever walk the runway en pointe.
  • He was inspired to dance by Michael Jackson, he said Michael changed his life ever since he was 4 years old.
  • Antoine and Darius Pierce (Shangela) attended Southern Methodist University together.
  • He became a scholarship student at Motion Mania Dance Center.
  • He earned a Bachelor's degree in dance.
  • Davenport has been seen on television on A&E Network's 15 Films about Madonna, Voom HD's Magnificent Obsessions, and on American Broadcasting Company's daytime soap opera One Life to Live. He was featured in the pilot of Judge Karen as an angry Beyoncé impersonator who sues the paparazzi.
  • He was the boyfriend of Manila Luzon until he passed away.
  • Released two singles "Pump With Me" and "Go Off", available on iTunes and Amazon.
  • Along with Pandora Boxx, they were the first two Drag Race queens to come from New York.
  • Sahara was the first Drag Race contestant to pass away.
    • Episode 1 of All Stars 1 was dedicated to Davenport's memory.
  • Her Instagram is dedicated to the remembrance of her life, rather than leaving it inactive.

Gallery

Season 2 Looks

Lip Syncs

External Links

References

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