What is your gender and your pronouns?
nonbinary trans (they/them)
You just celebrated a performance Anniversary - Congratulations! How many years have you been performing, and how did you celebrate?
2009 was the first time I performed drag in Boston, at Becca D'Bus' event Cherry at Jacques Cabaret, so that's just about nine years of drag and burlesque here in Boston! To celebrate I had a little screening of Priscilla Queen of the Desert, my favorite drag oriented movie, with a few friends.
When and what was your first official performance? What led you to it?
I joined the Full Body Cast Rocky Horror troupe in 2004, and began performing with them regularly. I was drawn to it as a fun weekend activity that seemed open and accepting of queer youth. I just celebrated a different anniversary- 13 years of Rocky Horror, with my current cast, the Teseracte Players of Boston.
Had you ever performed before? Did those experiences help or influence the way you approached drag and burlesque?
One of the things I performed was as Trixie, a character that performs a striptease during the opening "Science Fiction Double Feature." This is what provided a foundation for me in burlesque, and helped me when I made the jump from shadowcast to stage performer.
What led you to become a drag/burlesque performer?
For drag, I had a lot of experience attending drag/clubkid events growing up outside NYC. I was lucky enough to fall into the goth scene when I moved to Boston, and became a go-go dancer. Eventually through those connections, I began to emcee events, which led to hosting a Slaughterhouse Sweethearts show, and eventually joining that troupe. After parting ways with the Sweethearts, I co-founded the variety show Geek Girl Boston with Fonda Feeling, which further cemented a place as a burlesque, drag, and emcee performer in the Boston scene. I have always been interested in the intersection of expressing oneself through makeup and art, and drag and burlesque is a natural fit.
What is the first burlesque/drag show you saw?
The first drag show I ever saw was in NYC in 2000, the original run of The Donkey Show at club El Flamingo. Beyond this I used to go to a lot of bars to see friends perform, though I was maybe kind of a little bit underage at the time. When I moved to Boston, I attended Emerson College, which was conveniently a great place to start performing in student productions drag and beyond.
What do you love about burlesque/drag/performing?
I love being able to embody different characters and aspects of myself, and especially through drag, buck against gender norms and perceptions. I love being able to go from high-femme classic burlesque to being some of my fave comic book dudes in drag, or performing in a show celebrating my favorite anime series. Drag and burlesque provide not only entertainment but ways to express political and social commentary in a way that is engaging.
Why do you think Burlesque Boston is important? Tell us about the community!
Burlesque Boston is important as a great way to bridge the gap between all the different groups present in Boston. We're a varied lot, and BB has gone a long way to present slices of every corner of the great work New England has to offer.
Have you been a part of any other burlesque/drag communities? What did you learn from them?
I perform in NYC often, frequently with Anja Keister's D20 Burlesque and Crimson Kitty's Ladyqueen drag collective. Both are incredible producers, hosts, and performers, and it has been an honor and a privilege to be so welcomed in the NYC community. It's fantastic to be given space to do all sorts of nerdy acts, and to have Nonbinary expression in drag, burlesque, and beyond. I admire Anja's drive and focus, an Crimson's ability to carve a space for themself in a community not always open to change.
What is your favorite performance? Both your own and someone else's.
My favorite performance of my own is my Loki act to Use You by David Gahan, which is just a lot of fun embodying my favorite character pining for his brother Thor-- I'm a fanfiction lover at heart. Mostly, however, I love emceeing-- I love presenting shows and addressing the audience. My favorite thing I do all year is hosting the Sailor Moon Shoujo Spectacular as Queen Beryl. One of the best acts I've ever seen was Sherman as Ishka from Deep Space Nine at Sake Toomey's wonderful Star Trek show. Not only was it a great sendup of a fave character from DS9, but it was a riotous performance that went beyond beyond in being entertaining and well performed. I really admire Sherman's SFX makeup skills and the joy with which they perform.
Are you working on anything exciting you'd like to share with our readers?
Endless Burlesque: a tribute to Neil Gaiman's Sandman will be Sunday Feb 4th, 2018 at Oberon.
Are you a producer? What have you produced?
I've produced many shows in Boston since 2011-- Geek Girl Boston, Witness the Wasteland, Sailor Moon Shoujo Spetacular, Endless Burlesque and more.
What is a fun fact about you that people may not know?
I'm a proud model for GC2B binders-- if you go to their site, check out the red half binder. They're a wonderful trans and gender nonconforming owned company that strives to provide binders for all body types.
What song can you not help dancing to?
"Cheap Thrills" by Sia
What is your website, Instagram, twitter, etc?
Is there anything else you'd like to share with our readers?
Always be yrself-- everyone else is taken!
Burlesque Boston's Blog is a collection of contributions from burlesque artists.