About Shannel

Born and raised in Southern California, Bryan Watkins has taken the world by storm for 30 years as female illusionist, Shannel.

Flourishing in the entertainment field young in life, Watkins’ interests in art, design and production were evident beginning early in his childhood. Mastering the skills of illustration, juggling, riding a unicycle plus a roster of similar attributes, his path for the stage was clear- and at age 15, Shannel was born.

In 2001, Bryan was offered a permanent position at internationally recognized Gypsy Nightclub, Las Vegas’ premier LGBT establishment, and remained their head producer and host of his own show, Illusion, for 9 years. Living in the “entertainment capital of the world” Vegas suited the young entertainer as he established himself as a regular cast member of the famous “La Cage” at the Riviera Hotel (later developed into “Frank Marino’s Divas”).

As luck would have it, a new reality show was in bloom and looking for contestants for their first season. Producers contacted Bryan, explaining the premise of what we now call RuPauls Drag Race. In the wake of the premiere of the first season, Bryan traveled the country gaining notoriety and a solid fan base for years to come.

In 2018, Bryan started a Christmas rental and design company, Santa’s Helpers Design. His participation and triumphant win on “The Great Christmas Light Fight” in 2022, has allowed his company to flourish and during the holiday season. Currently, you can find him every weekend at Voss Events’ Drag Brunch located in Treasure Island Hotel in Las Vegas, NV.