A Chat With: Sister Sister from RuPaul’s Drag Race UK

She’s flying the drag flag for Scouse Queens in season two of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK and recently launched LGBT+ History Month with the Museum of Liverpool, but we managed to grab five minutes with Sister Sister to find out more about growing up LGBT+ in Liverpool, starting out in drag and her personal icons.

What was your experience of growing up in Liverpool as a member of the LGBT+ Community?

“I grew up in sheltered, safe, heterosexual suburbia, which is where I take a lot of my drag inspiration from now but growing up I felt alienated. Luckily my two older sisters had the campest taste in videos and toys and I had non-judgemental parents who’d let me frolick so I intently focused on an imaginary world of strong, obnoxiously fashionable cartoon women like Jem and the Holograms, Barbie and to some extent Anneka Rice.”

So tell us, what was your first experience of drag?

“Picture this: A sunny front lawn in a well kept cul-de-sac, a small child aged four is mincing about in a red tinsel wig and matching dress pointing to the camera and wiggling their finger. Cut to me 20+ years later discovering the home video and feeling so happy for my young free mischievous self. It’s so strange, I was unbelievably camp. Where did I pick this behaviour up? Actually you need look no further than my mum’s pristinely kept ginormous perm at that time.”

When did you first try drag and what was it like?

“As an adult I’ve always slipped into performance mindsets. I have two major passions: indulging in morbid history and comedy. The lights flick on when I know I have a fantastic anecdote ready to tell. I’d like to be included in the Raconteur Hall of Fame one day. I started playing around with traditional and non-traditional drag lewks around 2017 in London at a (since closed) bar in Camden. I looked absolutely unhinged with a giant black triangle wig and my trademark blue orb face paint and was able to keep the crowds mesmerised with dry jokes which has since become my brand.”

You recently did a photoshoot and recorded a video to launch LGBT+ History Month at the Walker Art Gallery, why did you choose that location?

“I’ve been a lifelong visitor of all the museums in Liverpool but the sculpture gallery at the Walker has a particular dreamy palatial magnificence. A lot of my visual work plays with mortality and form. I’ve included busts of myself on my designs for merchandise so I knew I had to shoot among the marble at some point. It’s quite a full circle moment!”

Finally, who are some LGBT+ icons that you look up to?

Marsha P Johnson, Dusty Springfield, Laverne Cox, Madonna, Grayson Perry, Warhol, Fran Lebovitz. Any queer who’s ever woken up, taken a look around and made a positive change.

BBC Three series RuPaul’s Drag Race UK is streaming now on BBC iPlayer, with new episodes every Thursday at 7pm.

Image credit: BBC/World of Wonder/Ray Burmiston


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