Favourite Drag Performers || Part One
I clearly have not written enough posts about drag. So I thought today I would write a post about drag! (That was a poor joke, I write entirely too much about drag and I know people don’t care - but I do). Instead of a review - shocker - today is all about the drag queens (I’ll have to do a separate post for kings otherwise we will be here all day) I love and admire and spend evening upon evening watching, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if any of them took out a restraining order.
Anyway. Drag. This is going to be very London centric, because I’m essentially an awful person and don’t leave London - but I also love the London scene so there’s also that. This is basically a love letter to all the incredible performers who are entirely too cool for me and I annoy on a regular basis, and all the reasons you should a) follow them on social media and b) get out to a show (if you can) and see them in the flesh. I’ll also dot around some different shows that happen on the reg, and really if you live in London you then have no excuse to get out and see them.
We have to start with the queen of camp herself, and foster mother to many of the performers listed below. Meth. Don’t do drugs, do Meth. Make that your new life motto, and get out to a Meth show. She used to own Her Upstairs in Camden (still raw, still sad, will never recover), and now hosts a night every other Saturday at The Apple Tree in Clerkenwell. It’s a gorgeous venue and a gorgeous night, with a different band of merry outcasts every time - as well as a special headline guest.
Back to Meth. She’s an incredible lipsync artist with some of the best numbers around, and you’re always guaranteed a camp time from her performance to her outfit. Sparkly gowns, boobs that occasionally don’t stay put, hair coiffed as high as you like in all the colours under the rainbow (she does occasionally look like a very tall, sparkly clown): there’s a reason Meth is so established on the scene, and it’s not because she’s old. Get out and see her perform, you will not regret it. Plus, the shows are generally pretty cheap and there’s usually seating. Winning all round.
Lipsync extraordinaire, has appeared in nearly every review I’ve written for this here blog, HERR has been one of my favourite performers for a very long time now. Ridiculously camp with the most hilarious numbers, she’s an incredible and very charismatic drag artist. Her outfits may have many holes in them, but getting to see her perform is always a treat among treats. My favourite numbers of her(r)s include: that Countdown number I have seen entirely too many times but always makes me cackle, the Yzma inspired number mixed with ‘Power’ by Little Mix, her homage to the many memes of the internet, and the newest number wherein she lipsyncs to ‘I Was Here’ and ends up stamping her name on innocent bystanders hands. I saw HERR last night and remembered how much I also love her ‘Speechless’ number, and when she lipsyncs to ‘Modern Major General’. Absolutely brilliant, absolutely ridiculous, camp to the very end.
HERR hosts The Tuckshop every other Monday with a rotating cast of delicious performers and a different headliner every week in the Phoenix Artists Club, which is this delightful little venue underneath the Phoenix Theatre where Chicago plays. She also performs around London, is part of the parody group Gals Aloud, and you’ll have to follow her social media to find out where else she is because bugger if I can remember. All I have to say is: she’s one of the best performers London has to offer, and if you don’t get out to see her, you’re missing out. Oh - she has her very first solo show coming up fairly soon. Tickets are on OutSavvy, it’s at The Glory, and it’s entitled ‘The Curious Case of Imogen Thatt’. I won’t say any more.
A queen who is currently taking the London scene by storm, Glew is another absolutely ridiculous performer with some hilarious numbers. I love watching Glew, and every time I see her it’s an absolute delight. She hosts a night with Flynn Rideher and Chanel No 5 at West 5 bar every month, and she’s also part of the rotating Tuckshop Babes who grace the (very tiny) stage in the Phoenix Artists Club every other Monday. She always manages to turn some fantastic looks, is known for her very strong brows, and isn’t a singer - but isn’t not a singer. I can attest to that after having heard her sing at Meth’s first Apples and Pears show - review here - where it was an honest surprise that the venue had windows left after her rendition of a song I have forgotten (shocker). Something about being breathless, asthma attack, along those lines.
Glew also took part in Meth’s Not Another Drag Competition Season 4, and was a competitor on Season 2 of All Stars when Her Upstairs came to a sudden end - and she totally would have won. Probably. Although Knockout (now known as Joy Less) was the more likely winner. Joking! Glew is an incredible performer, and my favourite numbers of her’s include the iconic Jeremy Kyle inspired number cut with Kings and Queens, the Sugababes Push The Button with added appliances, and that one where she cuts a song with talking to the DJ as the song descends slowly into madness. Glew is truly one of the best entertainers the scene has to offer. Get out and see her. Please. She needs the cash.
I first saw Monroe perform only about a month ago, at the very first iteration of The Tuckshop. And boy, am I more than glad that I know this incredible performer now. Monroe is a beautiful live vocalist, as well as a lipsync artist, and she’s blown me away every time I’ve seen her perform. Which is twice. But they were two very good times, and at the second (third) Tuckshop she looked like the most gorgeous beacon of flame, and really does anything get camper than that? NO. It was also highly amusing to watch her try and sit down in the corset, she ended up sort of half planking. Absolute top comedy. She’s also a musical theatre queen, which to be honest, is my favourite kind. Perform a musical theatre song and you’re immediately in my top ten of all time, it really does not take much to entertain me. Very easily pleased.
You can catch Monroe at many different Glitterbombs across the south-east area, including different cities beginning with an R and a C that I don’t quite remember (but follow her on Insta and you’ll find out), as well as occasionally gracing the stage at Tuckshop. She’s gorgeous, and talented, and just generally very lovely. I like her a lot, and you should too.
I won’t make that joke I always make (any relation to Santa? STUPID), but I will tell you that if you didn’t get the pun the first time around, read Kitty’s name again. It took me so long to realise that her name was, in fact, a pun name. That is because I am an idiot. Anyway. Kitty Scott-Claus of the ‘Burn’ and blue caped dress fame. I love her, she is one of my favourite queens of all time. Yes I have said that about every performer so far but that is why this is a list of my favourites. Because they are my favourites. Back to Kitty. She’s another musical theatre queen with an incredible voice, and every time I have the pleasure of hearing her sing I am just blown away. An absolute treat in anyone’s eyes. She’s a big woman with a big voice and a big personality, and is as camp as they come. Highlights of her performances include her new ‘My Dad Wrote a Porno’ number, anytime she sings ‘Burn’, and when she sings anything from ABBA. I love ABBA.
You can find Kitty often prancing around at Rascals at a weekend, occasionally at Tuckshop, at other venues around London and the south-east when they book her, and as Kimberly in Gals Aloud. If you do nothing else, get yourself to a Gals Aloud show. They’re in Manchester and London in November, and it’s one of the funniest shows around. Go even if you don’t like Girls Aloud. I promise it’s the most fun you can have this side of the grave. She also used to be part of The Two Nancy’s with Ophelia Love, and my biggest regret in life is that I never made it out to one of those shows because I’m essentially lazy trash. But follow Kitty. She’s funny. She also only just got a twitter so you know, she needs the support.
London’s very tall, very pretty woman. Honestly, I have no idea how she looks so beautiful every time she gets into drag, it should be criminal. Also a lover of a biscuit boot. But we can’t all be perfect. Fond of singing ‘Purple Rain’, I have been a fan of Ophelia since the Illamasqua launch of Michelle Visage’s eyelashes last May, when I genuinely thought I had never seen anyone prettier. She’s since got even prettier. Bastard. She’s an incredible singer, frequently forgets the words, has incredible lipsync talents to boot, and made it to the final of NADC All Stars last year but lost to HERR. She’s one of the best queens on the London scene, and always turns out some incredible looks - her makeup skills are unquestionable, and no matter what she’s doing it always looks flawless. Well. More so this year - the lace on the wigs last year was questionable.
You can find Ophelia wherever she gets booked - Glitterbombs, sometimes Rascals, sometimes Apples and Pears, sometimes Tuckshop. She gets around, and well deserved it is too. If you do nothing else, follow her on Instagram for the looks. It’ll leave you feeling absolutely ashamed of your own ability to not look like that. She also appears as Nicole (I think) in Gals Aloud, and was the other half of The Two Nancy’s when that was a thing. I’m hoping if I write it enough the universe will make it a thing again. I love musical theatre. Highlights of Ophelia’s performances include her ‘God Is A Woman’ number, when she lipsyncs to ‘Satisfied’ (I believe the first thing I ever saw her perform), and when she sings ‘Sweet Transvestite’. I love a spot of Rocky Horror.
Another performer I only discovered a month or so ago thanks to Tuckshop, Poppycock has swiftly shot up there as one of my absolute favourites. A ginger whirlwind with more dancing and singing skills than any one person should possess, getting to see Poppycock perform is always an absolute delight. My lasting memory of her is at the second or third (I really don’t recall) Tuckshop when she span down the side of the room, and all the queens just looked up in absolute shock as this hurricane swirled past them, ginger hair flying and legs kicking. She’s an absolutely incredible performer, and can command the stage and the audience’s attention effortlessly, despite being quite a tiny person. She always turns some beautiful looks too, last night she was clad in a snakeskin crop top and shorts combo that was just utterly gorgeous.
I believe Poppycock has her own show every Saturday at the Queens Arms in Brighton, so if you can make it down of an afternoon absolutely do. It’s camp, and you’ll leave with the biggest smile on your face and the slight fear that you might be kicked in the face by an enthusiastic ginger. She also twirls at Tuckshop every now and then, and just recently competed in It’s A Knockout at Halfway to Heaven where she won! I told you, she’s incredible. Follow her social media to keep up with all the other places she will be performing.
One of the best and fiercest performers London has to offer (thank you for giving her up Wales), Tayce can turn a lipsync no matter what it is. From songs like J-Lo’s ‘Tens’ to camp numbers about supermarket sweep, you will never be quite sure what Tayce will give you but you know it will be good. She also has some of the best looks in London too. Absolutely ridiculous how good she looks every single time she performs. And boy does she perform. She’d been known to do four different gigs in one evening and still be alive at the end, and I genuinely have no idea how. I just attend one show and I’m done for at least three days. She’s also just a really lovely person, so you can’t even hate her for being so damned talented.
You can catch Tayce all over London, but you’ll have to run to keep up. Sometimes at Heaven, sometimes at Apples and Pears, sometimes at Rascals, sometimes at many many other places - she’s a booked queen - be sure to keep up with her social media to find out where she is. She also appears as Javine in Gals Aloud, if you needed another reason to get out and see that show. You didn’t, but there you go anyway. Have Tayce.
Every hole’s a goal with Cheryl Hole! Only now she’s engaged. Anyway. An incredible dancer and lipsync artist, Cheryl is another queen who just blows me away every time I get to see her perform. Camp and fierce in equal measures, Cheryl can wiggle across the floor as the Basilisk from Harry Potter, and in the next breath be turning out the choreo to Lady Gaga’s ‘Judas’. An Essex queen - and don’t we all know it - she’s been a favourite of mine for a long time now. A fan of a bejewelled bodysuit, highlights of Cheryl’s performances include her Kim Woodburn number, her Gemma Collins number, and any time she performs ‘Shut Up and Drive’. Her dancing abilities (especially when the stages are inevitably tinier than any performer would ever want them to be) are second to none, and she has a charismatic energy on stage that is bigger than she actually is. She is quite tiny.
You can catch Cheryl at many, many different places. The girl is booked, and don’t she know it. She does most of the Glitterbombs, occasionally gets around to other places across the UK, will appear at Apples and Pears when she is booked there, and generally just gallivants around London. She’s truly an incredible artist, and you best follow her social media to see her turn looks and find out where she’ll be performing. She’s also Cheryl in Gals Aloud, and I will stop banging on about that show now. But honestly. Get out and see it.
And there I will endeth this (rather long) post, because there are many more queens and drag performers in general who I love seeing but we don’t have all day. I imagine there will be more parts to this series, so check out the performers above and check back in in the next installment!