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Featured Guests

Chef Todd Erickson

Entrepreneur and proud LGBTQ+ advocate Chef Todd Erickson is renowned for his culinary excellence and innovative flavors. Charismatic and dashing, Erickson has garnered numerous accolades, including a victory on Food Network Channel’s “Beat Bobby Flay.”

Erickson’s love for life, beauty, and flavor has attracted the attention of pop stars, icons, presidents, dignitaries, and their families and has been featured on Food Network, Cooking Channel, NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, CNN en Español as well as published in best-selling books. Chef Todd Erickson is a global citizen, consulting for five-star resorts throughout Central America and the Caribbean. Todd lives by the mantra, “Food is Art. Art is Life. Life is Good!”

Get ready to be captivated as Chef Todd brings his culinary prowess to the Advance by Transcend Cruises. He will curate diverse themed dinners, conduct engaging hands-on culinary classes, and host thrilling interactive guest culinary competitions. There’s a delightful experience for everyone to enjoy!

You can learn more about Chef Todd here.

guest

VARLA JEAN MERMAN

VARLA JEAN MERMAN (aka Jeffery Roberson Loe) starred in the musical Lucky Guy opposite Leslie Jordan in New York in 2011 at the Little Shubert Theatre, prompting The New York Times to rave, “If Carol Burnett and Harvey Korman had stood in front of the right pair of funhouse mirrors, they might have resembled Ms. Merman and Mr. Jordan in stature as well as comedic talent.” More recently, Jeffery starred in the films Hush Up, Sweet CharlotteGirls Will Be Girls, and Varla Jean and the Mushroomheads.Off-Broadway audiences have also embraced Jeffery in the title role of Giancarlo Menotti’s opera The Medium, as well as the title role in the musical comedy farce Mildred Fierce. Jeffery played the role of Mary Sunshine on Broadway in the revival of Chicago and in the First National Touring Company. In 2010, he won Boston’s Elliot Norton Award for Best Musical Performance in Phantom of the Oprah

Jeffery’s longtime collaboration with the prolific Ricky Graham has produced such hits as Hello Dawlin’!,Gone with the Breaking WindSteel Poinsettias, and the hugely successful Scrooge In Rouge which has nine productions across the country this year alone.

Jeffery as Varla Jean has filled concert halls and cabarets across the world including the Sydney Opera House and Carnegie Hall. He made his network television debut on All My Children, guest starred in Ugly Betty and was on Bravo’s Project RunwaySeason 5 as the winning model for the show’s drag challenge.