Sidney Stokes: Hey NotSafe4Werkers! Get your yarmulkes on because we have a VERY special guest today! Lady SinAGaga! Alright Lady SinAGaga I have to start with the question I as everyone. Who the hell are you and how did you get in to my house?
LS: Well I’m Lady SinAGaga your Miss NotSafe4Werk 2015!
SS: Lady SinAGaga, one of the remarkable things about you is how you are so polished that it seems like you have been doing drag your whole life, but in reality, it’s much shorter than that. Tell me, what has made you the tower of talent you are today? ‘
LS: Oh wow, you’re way too kind, I don’t’ know about “tower of talent” but I do appreciate a little bit of polish every now and then. I have only been doing drag consistently for less than a year, I actually started on Christmas, because what else is a Jewish boy gonna do, but I guess you could say that I look to the great queens around me. New York City has some amazing queens who have given be such amazing opportunities and tips that I have learned from such as Tina Burner, Monet Exchange, Bob the Drag Queen, Paige Turner and Chiffon Dior. Looking up to the queens that are successful in such a difficult city like NYC has really helped me hone in on what I personally want to do and how to do it.
SS: So what was the last bit of inspiration that pushed you over the drag edge to embark on this journey.
LS: Well I’m an artist by trade, and I guess you could say I got tired of going to drag shows and sitting in the audience when I knew deep down I really wanted to be on the stage. I cant sing to save my life ( when I sing in the shower, the water literally turns itself off! ) so when I saw queens lip syncing it was like a lightbulb going off. THAT, I could do!
SS: Did you proceed to sing “I Can Do That” from A Chorus Line anyways ?
SS: So tell me a little bit about your first night out in drag. What were the circumstances? Did you perform?
LS: My very very first night out in drag was Halloween two years ago, I dressed as Miley from the VMA’s it was kinda amazing…literally 100s of people stopped me on the big parade route asking to take pics of me…it felt amazing…and I did it all in 9 inch heels.
SS: Like I said…a TOWER of talent.
SS: How did you first booking come about?
LS: Well getting an actual “booking” in NYC is not as easy as for someone working outside of the city. I’ve mostly done a lot of weekly competitions like Barracuda’s Star Search which has been instrumental in pushing my drag career forward. I’ve guested and hosted for queen and party promoters around the city. “Hebro” has all the Big Gay Jewish club Parties and their founder Jayson Littman took a chance on me by having me preform and host at one of his big gigs a year ago. But I guess my first official booking was actually this past Saturday when I did a Happy Hour show at Pieces as part of a Prize for me winning a week of So You Think You Can Drag (SYTYCD), which is the largest running Drag Competition in NYC at New World Stages, because yes, I’m crazy and was doing two pageants at once.
SS: Some say crazy, I like to say, that damn good! How did that go?
LS: Well So You Think You Can Drag is actually still running for another few weeks, so if anyone wants to come and support me (SYTYCD is at New World Stages on Thursday nights, Doors open at 10:30pm). Help a gurl out. Its going great so far, I’m having a ton of fun and being pushed creatively.
SS: Lady SinAGaga, what inspires you creatively?
LS: I’d have to say the people around me. I have surrounded myself with such amazingly creative and inspiring people that its hard not to be moved by them.
SS: Do you feel that they also help serve as a drive to help you achieve the next level of your career as well as be your muses?
LS: Oh 100%
SS: Now I have a question, in your Q&A challenge this week, and here, you mentioned the difficulties of being an NYC queen. Do you find the way to overcome that is specific to each queen? And how were you able to begin to overcome those hurdles.
LS: Hmmm, well I think as I said its hard to be a queen in NYC because there are so many of us. I think it depends on your perspective and support network. I have some great friends who always come out and support me. But I honestly wouldn’t be anywhere without my unbelievable boyfriend constantly encouraging me and pushing me. If i didn’t have my support network i wouldn’t have been able to make it as far as i have.
SS: Aw that’s great! I think this is the time when you gush over your boyfriend.
LS: He’s just amazing and so supportive of me and my drag, #bestdraghusbandever
SS: What do you think, if any, are misconceptions about the drag community, and how do you think you can help shatter those misconceptions?
LS: Well I guess that goes back to the last question. A lot of drag queens say that men don’t want to date them. I think its because in the gay community a lot of gay men are not secure enough in their own masculinity to be with someone who does drag. In the straight community, a question I get asked by straight girls a lot is ” well, do you want to be a woman?” I always just respond with ” I’m very happy with all the parts God gave me, no returns here, but I mean if you knew you could look this good, wouldn’t you switch it up every once in a while for a number or two?”
SS: What a brilliant response. So tell me Lady, what’s next for you in the coming months?
LS: Well I have to finish off So You Think You Can Drag , Hopefully make it to that finale and have the opportunity to do something really special that I’ve been planning for a little while. And then honestly see where all this takes me. I’d love to have a weekly gig in this city and be afforded the opportunity to show everyone what I can do on a regular and consistent basis. But honestly I’m just hoping to finally get some sleep now that this is all over.
SS: SinAGaga, tell me how you heard about the Miss NotSafe4Werk pageant and why you decided to dip you heels in it!
LS: Well I actually found out about it through Facebook, and I thought that it would be a great way to challenge myself as well as try something new, I mean an online pageant…I thought that was pretty cool
SS: Before you joined, did you have any expectations going in, if so, what were they?
LS: I totally had no expectations … I was just excited (and nervous) to try and do new things and meet New people. I mean I think I’ve been doing drag the shortest out of everyone so when the announced the cast it was super intimidating.
SS: What was your game plan going in?
LS: Well I guess my game plan that I have whenever drag is concerned….to have fun, to entertain and to push myself, and try and do something I’ve never done…oh….and to win.
SS: Do you feel you take criticism well? How did you react to the judges critiques?
LS: Well to be honest sometimes the critiques confused me. I guess they were truly an example of how everyone takes to drag in their own way. So I guess yes I kinda take the critiques well (especially when they were good ).
SS: What was your favorite challenge and why?
LS: Wow that’s difficult. I’ve never done Cosplay, so while it was scary at first I ended up having so much fun with it. Swimsuit and Evening Gown are also in the top for me because it really pushed me to start constructing garments. Those where the first swimsuit and evening gown I had ever made. And I am soooo proud of them. But my favorite look, YA I’d have to say that gown!
SS: It was a stunning gown
LS: Aww, well thank you! As I said I’m SOOO proud of it!
SS: what was your LEAST favorite challenge and why?
LS: Hmmm I’d have to say going into it cosplay because I was just so unfamiliar with it, even though as evidenced my video, I ended up having such a blast with it.
SS: Honestly, I would have thought you’d been doing cosplay for years based on that look. It was so brilliant and inspired!
LS: Well I really wanted to do a character that felt connected to and one that in way represented me: Going into it I knew that if I wanted to be happy and feel good about my performance the only person I could compete with was myself. But seeing them preform well really did push me week after week.
SS: You’ve mentioned how local queens in New York inspire you, was there any queen in the competition that inspired you in the same way?
LS: Well each queen in their own right, Sabrina’s Makeup Skills are to die for, Boxxas construction skills, Ari’s political drag platform, Luna’s humor, Aunties edge, Lacy’s amazing creativity, Lady P’s elegance and grace, Cher’s southern charm, Anita’s consistency and STRs spirit and soul.I feel like if you could mold us all into one bed be an unstoppable queen!
SS: So it’s safe to say you took inspiration from this experience as a whole.
LS Oh 100%!
SS: Do you feel you gained confidence in your art as this experience went on?
LS: Totally, now I’m not scared of things like Cosplay or evening gown construction !!!! I’ve added some fabulous tools To my little drag toolbox
SS: With these new tools in your drag bag, have you been able to apply it to any of your recent performances?
LS: Well at So You Think You Can Drag a few weeks ago the theme was “Unlock Your Inner Child” I did a really poignant number about growing up gay and orthodox and becoming a drag queen.
This competition was such a transformative experience for me, it gave me confidence in my ideas and abilities and I feel has truly changed me as a performer
SS: Now Lady SinAGaga, I do something in all my interviews called…
THE LIGHTNING ROUND
LS: Go for it boo.
SS: Who is your gay icon?
LS: OMG! AHH! ….Babs.
SS: What is your favorite song from the 90s?
LS: I was born in the 90s….next!
SS: What’s your favorite drink?
LS: Sugar free Redbull.
SS: What is one thing people should NOT do to you at a club?
LS: Touch my hair or face.
SS: Where is your favorite place?
LS: Shake Shack
SS: What is your favorite piece of advice?
LS: “Be you, everyone else is taken.”
SS: And lastly, at NotSafe4Werk, there is one thing we love as much as cocktails…and that’s shamelessly plugging things. So tell us…what do you have going on and just how shameless can you plug it?
LS Everyone check out Hebro the best place to find a hot gay Jew and of course check me out for the next few weeks at So You Think You Can Drag at New World Stages (340 W 50th Street, NYC) ok Thursday’s at 11 and help me get into the finale! Nothing like one last plug. Oh and of course follow me on Facebook at Nathan Newman and instagram @ladysinagaga
SS: Thank you so much for all of your time, I’m so glad I got to speak with you. Best of luck in the rest of the competition!
LS: Awwwww thanks babe!!! Fingers crossed! I’m excited for the results!