‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’: The Olivia Newton-John Songs Used in Lip Syncs

RuPaul’s Drag Race has seen plenty of iconic lip syncs over the years to a wide variety of songs. Beloved Grease star Olivia Newton-John was a friend to RuPaul and to Drag Race, having made several appearances on the show — either as a guest or as the featured vocalist in a lip sync.

RuPaul and Olivia Newton-John in 1998
RuPaul and Olivia Newton-John | Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc

Olivia Newton-John has appeared on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ multiple times

Olivia Newton-John’s first appearance on RuPaul’s Drag Race was back in 2015 on Season 7. She sat on the panel as a guest judge alongside RuPaul for the Glamazonian Airways musical challenge.

In 2021, Newton-John stopped by Drag Race once again — this time, via video. She and her daughter Chloe Lattanzi appeared on the final episode of Season 1 of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under to give her blessing to Australia and New Zealand’s best drag queens.

Katya and Sasha Belle lip synced to ‘Twist of Fate’

When Newton-John sat on the judges’ panel on Season 7, she got to witness two queens performing one of her hit songs. Katya Zamolodchikova and Sasha Belle battled it out to “Twist of Fate,” Newton-John’s 1983 single from the soundtrack for Two of a Kind, which reunited her with her Grease co-star John Travolta.

Many fans remember the “Twist of Fate” lip sync because of Katya’s flexibility and breathtaking movements, including a dramatic slow split during the song.

In 1984, “Twist of Fate” reached No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, becoming the singer’s last top-ten hit on the chart. The song’s music video was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Video, Short Form.

Over two decades later, in 2017, the song was featured in Season 2 of Netflix’s smash series Stranger Things. It was also included on the accompanying soundtrack album, which went on to be nominated for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media at the Grammy Awards.

Art Simone, Karen From Finance, Kita Mean, and Scarlet Adams lip synced to ‘Physical’

After Olivia Newton-John gave a pep talk to the final four queens on Season 1 of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under, one of her biggest hit songs was used for the final lip sync. Art Simone, Kita Mean, Karen From Finance, and Scarlet Adams performed to her song “Physical.” While Newton-John hails from Australia and three of the final four queens were Australian, it was New Zealand’s Kita Mean that gave the most exciting rendition of the song and took home the crown.

Newton-John had earned No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart before the release of “Physical” in 1981, such as “I Honestly Love You,” “Have You Never Been Mellow,” and “You’re the One That I Want.” But the song ended up being her biggest hit and confirmed that she was a pop superstar, as it spent 10 weeks at No. 1 on the Hot 100 — the most of any single in the 1980s.

The song was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

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