Beyond the Face: Royalty Edition with Diana Dzhaketov
Last year Misty Violet passed the torch and title of WERRRK.com’s Queen of Los Angeles to the Bond girl of drag, Diana Dzhaketov. In typical drag queen fashion it took us almost the entire year to get Diana her trophy (drag queen time ya know?) but this gave Sidney the chance to sit and talk with Queen Diana and reflect on the year of her reign. (Editor’s Note: We get it Diana. We only find Sidney tolerable when he’s giving us things too.)
Sidney Stokes: Thanks? Hey there WERRRKers I’m here with WERRRK.com’s current reigning Queen of Los Angeles, Diana Dzhaketov! Diana, as we come to the end of your year long reign, tell us, how has your reign been?
Diana Dzhaketov: Fabulous I’ve had many fans bring me mozzarella sticks!
SS: What has your proudest accomplishment been in the last year?
DD: Having a year long run at the Sofitel with Room Service and being able to bring a queer variety show to Beverly Hills, where you rarely see a drag performer, let alone a show giving trans performers a platform and we were able to do that at every event.
SS: In the last year what changes have you seen to the Los Angeles scene?
DD: Platforms like Dragula and the downtown scene have transformed the landscape and given different types of drag their time to shine. An influx in live singers, bearded queens, and queens not afraid to take risks has really refreshed the scene in a great way.
SS: People think LA is cutthroat but do you think the overall scene is supportive?
DD: Yes! Yes! Yes! It’s a sisterhood! When one queen opens a show, it only benefits the scene as a whole because we can all work together for a larger benefit.
SS: Who on the national scene has inspired you?
DD: I’m most interested in Plastique Tiara from Texas cause she’s beyond beautiful, humble, and she can perform! When she came to Micky’s I truly fangirled out. Inspiration wise, I’d say Sasha (Velour) cause of her queer activism and how it influence her drag.
SS: Why is it important to be a fan of drag outside of your city?
DD: It’s important to know what fans outside of your city are looking at and living for so you can make sure you’re own drag is constantly evolving with the goal of building a larger audience.
SS: Diana, you have been at every DragCon on this coast, why is it important for things like that to exist?
DD: I think it’s important to have safe spaces for queer people, especially Q & T POC, to have a place to express themselves. In LA specifically, as gentrification becomes more prevalent, we keep losing those spaces. As that happens we’ll need more events like DragCon to fill in the gaps.
SS: So do you think drag is a political statement?
DD: Yes, but not in the stereotypical way. Currently, just being a queer person in America is a political statement but add drag to that and it becomes a much BIGGER statement, especially when you factor how mainstream drag has become. The top performers have a platform of millions of followers to help create change.
SS: How do you plan to create change?
DD: By doing what I’ve always loved and done since my career started; Create drag shows where you wouldn’t typically see them. That’s harder but that’s why I love it. Gotta create space outside of the comfort zone and push the gay agenda.
SS: As your reign comes to a close what advice do you have for you successor?
DD: Make EVERY Emcee that introduces you call you The Queen of LA! (Editor’s Note: Legally speaking you should be asking them to introduce you as the WERRRK.com Queen of LA.)
SS: What do you want to promote and how shamelessly can you do it?
DD: FLOW! Future Ladies of Wrestling! January 13th at Human Resources here in LA. Oh and also my Golden Birthday at the Sofitel in Beverly Hills (Friday December 29th) to help push those Beverly Hills boundaries and that gay agenda!”
SS: Diana, thank you for all you have done this year!