Chanel No 5 Speakeasy || Drag Show Review #4
Right. I am going to preface this with two things. One: I realise I said there would only be two drag show reviews this week but I lied. I ended up going to another show last night, and because reviewing them is fast becoming my favourite thing to do I’m going to write a third, because I do what I want. Second: I don’t remember what the second thing was, in all honesty. This might be a running theme through this piece because I didn’t record any footage or write down what anything did, and so if I can remember anything that happened it’ll be a fucking miracle.
Anyway. Name of the show: Chanel No 5’s Speakeasy. Host of the show: Chanel No 5. Special guests: Glew, Kitty Scott-Claus (I don’t know if she’s any relation to Santa, you’ll have to ask her - similar builds though…), and Carrot.
I arrived slightly late to the show due to being held up at a work event in which I felt like a pair of walking tits as the men seemed incapable of looking at my face, and walked into the venue (The White Swan bar in Limehouse) during Chanel’s rendition of a Rocky Horror song. I don’t really remember which one. Science Fiction/Double Feature maybe? It was a Rocky Horror number, that much I do remember. (It’s embarrassing that my memory is so awful when I don’t even drink). Dressed in a black fishtail dress (strapless, kept falling down, when will someone invent a device to keep these queens dresses firmly in place), and with her usual blonde hair in place, Chanel then treated us to another song. Shocker. I don’t remember what it was. Another shocker. I did, however, remember to get pictures of Chanel this time so I’m not a total idiot. Just mostly one.
It was then Glew’s turn to take to the stage, and whilst I think I remember what Glew did, I don’t remember what order they came in so we’ll just make it up. Her ridiculous and iconic in equal measures Jeremy Kyle number definitely came first, because it is, I will happily admit, one of my favourites. No one does 16 year old chav quite like Glew does, which is definitely something I have said before but something that bears repeating. From her facial expressions down to her body language, it’s almost worrying how accurate it is. Was Glew the 16 year old on Jeremy Kyle? Science cannot confirm or deny. Her second number was one I’ve not seen before, but one that I fell utterly in love with. It was so simple, and so stupid (which seems to be Glew’s special talent). Imagine Whitney Houston’s ‘I Will Always Love You’, mixed in with the audio of that girl who just cannot get the notes and you get the picture. It’s genuinely hilarious, and Glew’s perfect lipsync execution has you almost believing that she’s singing. Almost. I’ve heard her sing, and the girl on the track is definitely better.
Carrot came next, and delighted the audience with a delicious treat. I will stick my hand up and admit I’ve never seen Carrot perform before, but I also can say I enjoyed every second. Taking to the stage dressed as a sheep, she performed a version of ‘Creep’ but changed the lyrics to - you guessed it - sheep. As a Devon bred gal, where sheep were more prolific than people throughout my childhood, I thoroughly enjoyed this and just could not stop laughing. Carrot’s next number was an ode to the simple fleece: a drastically underrated item of clothing in anyone’s book. After a reveal during the sheep number into an interesting fleece dress, Carrot launched into a rendition of Beauty and the Beast but with the lyrics changed once again to - if you haven’t got it by now you’re an idiot - ‘Beauty in a fleece’. Comedy gold? Quite possibly.
To round out the first half, we had the fitting Kitty Scott-Claus. Kitty Scott-Her-Arse-Out. I kid you not, the dress was small enough that the entire audience could almost see what she’d had for dinner. Pretty though. Gold sequinned with a lovely bit of fringe. There seems to be a mental block when it comes to me remembering anything Kitty ever does, so at least half of her set I have forgotten, but I know I very much enjoyed it. I know she definitely sang Super Trooper (she loves a bit of ABBA, and so do I), the most beautiful slowed down rendition of Cut To The Feeling (channelling her inner Ophelia and forgetting some of the lyrics halfway through), and potentially this was when she also sang a song from the Mean Girls musical. Fitting, as it was both a Wednesday and October 3rd.
Although no-one wore pink, which really was a giant shame.
Kitty at some point, whether it was during the first half or second half, also sang Let It Go from that little Disney film Frozen. I love when Kitty sings Let It Go. As a bonafide not normal person, Frozen is one of my favourite movies and I love it entirely too much, and Kitty has such a gorgeous voice that the pairing is just splendid. This is where my memory fails me. I’m 90% sure she also sang two other songs but could I tell you what they are? No I could not. Could I tell you that they were really very good? Yes I absolutely could. Even if I don’t remember a thing, I do have a warm lasting memory of enjoying everything she’s ever done - that might be pushing it - and she’s an incredible queen who you should get out and see. Kitty Scott-Gigs can often be found at London Rascals of a weekend, so go look her up and you might even remember her set.
Chanel finished the first half with a rendition of what could have possibly been ‘Big Spender’, a Chanel classic. Big song, big vocals, small room. Lovely though.
After the break, and after Kitty had been on stage again (possibly), Carrot came back to entertain and enthrall us with some more delightful songs. True to form, I can only remember that she sang David Bowie’s ‘Life On Mars’, but I fucking love that song. It’s so beautiful, and Carrot’s rendition of it was truly gorgeous. I just looked through my live photos (thank you me), and discovered that the other song Carrot sang was a gorgeous version of ‘Bulletproof’. I don’t know how I forgot because it truly was stunning.
Glew was up last this time, with another set that wasn’t entirely normal but was completely hilarious. Kicking off with her Sugababes ‘Push The Button’ number - Push The Button, with added appliances from the doorbell, to the microwave, to the grindr notification - it’s one that never gets old. Simple and stupid will almost always be more effective than complicated and intricate, and Glew has it down to a true artform. Her next number was all about quality. Glew is, apparently, all about quality and it showed in her number that was a song interspersed with talking to the DJ as it inevitably went wrong. Top comedy from the queen dressed in a blazer and frilly knickers with her arsecheeks hanging out. She looked stunning. Business on top, something else on the bottom. I didn’t get any photos, but I’ll nick one from her instagram. She finished her set with a poem dedicated to Chanel, which made almost no sense but was fucking funny.
The hostess herself finished the night with two songs, both also Chanel classics. Much like Chanel No 5 the perfume. I think she did ‘All That Jazz’ from Chicago first, which is again one of my favourite songs of all time - I have happy memories of choreographing many a dance to that cheeky tune - and ended on a jazzy version of ‘Toxic’ by gay icon Britney Spears first, which is always a vocal treat.
Chanel No 5’s Speakeasy takes place every Wednesday at The White Swan bar in Limehouse from 8:30, and it’s free entry! If you’ve nothing else to do, get yourself down there. With new performers every week, it’ll (probably) never get old.