Here at QX we love a bit of high camp, dears, and when we heard that Molly Moggs resident drag powerhouse Jeff Kristian had written a book based around Soho drag queens AND that he would be appearing on ‘Big Brother’s Bit on the Side’ for the next fourteen weeks, we just had to catch up with him to get all the goss. Jason Reid staggered along to Molly Moggs to find out more…
Lots of exciting things happening; firstly tell us about your new book that’s out this month.
‘Where D’Ya Put Yer Willy?’ is a bonkers comedy about a closeted young man forced to become a Soho drag queen to escape the Essex mafia. As the story unfolds, he discovers he’s got more in common with the drag world than he could ever have imagined.
How did the idea come about?
There were so many stories to tell and the British drag scene has not really been written about in this way before. It was originally commissioned for radio, but there’s now a film offer on the table. Very exciting times.
Is it autobiographical at all? A reflection of your own life in cabaret?
Yes, and writing it has been a bit like being in therapy. Many events and people in the story are from my life, both in drag and before. It says a lot about my experiences and the way I reacted at the time. Anyone you recognise?
Is this your first foray into writing?
Not at all, I’ve been writing a regular comedy column for Pink Wire Magazine (online) for some years. Its called ‘Adventures of a Drag Queen’. It’s also autobiographical and, fingers crossed, is being published as a book this coming Christmas.
You’re also appearing on Big Brother’s Bit on the Side as ‘The Singing Drag Queen’ for the whole run of Big Brother/Celebrity Big Brother. Sounds fun, what can we expect?
A flurry of gorgeous frocks and some of the campest songs known to man; all to a backdrop of house-mates being thrown out. I’m so excited about it as it’ll be another camp thing to add to the CV and I’m sure it’s gonna be a great experience.
Did Endemol approach you?
Yes, I’ve worked with them before on ‘The Salon’. I had tits made of rice grain, which turned into pudding when I interviewed someone in the steam room. I was sweating like Fern Britton in a cake shop! I expect this time will be slightly more civilised and not so messy. Here’s hoping…
Are you a fan of Big Brother? Any favourite moments?
I’m a HUGE fan. I enjoyed watching Jade Goody, being a fellow Bermondsey girl; innit tho? Don’t mention the kebab. And of course Nikki Grahame, ‘WHOOOOOOO IS SHE?’
As well as all this, you have your twice-weekly Molly Moggs shows, which you’ve been doing for over ten years now. Will you still be continuing with these, as normal?
Of course, yes. Mollys is like a second home to me, it’s hard to imagine not working there now. Someone told me my sing-a-long show is now the longest running drag spot in Soho. I expect I’ll still be there with my zimmer frame when Queen Elizabeth celebrates 80 years on that throne of hers.
Do you have any tips for up and coming cabaret performers?
Rehearsal, rehearsal, rehearsal. BE NICE to people and do not take yourself too seriously. And remember – each performance could be the one for which you are forever remembered, so don’t fuck it up!
A FEW OF JEFF’S FAVOURITE THINGS…
Favourite ever Big Brother contestants?
Me home-girl Jade and me blood-bro Brian.
Favourite Drag Queens?
Me sister Dame Julie Paid and my dear, dear friend Lee Paris – miss you.
Favourite luxury item?
At the moment, it’s my pumice stone – the perfect relief for drag shoes.
Favourite shade of lippy?
In front of the telly with a choc ice – pull me nightie down when you’ve finished!
• Jeff Kristian is at Molly Moggs (2 Old Compton Street, Soho, W1D 4TA) every Monday and Thursday at 8.30pm. He is on Big Brother’s Bit on the Side from this week, and his book ‘Where D’ya Put Yer Willy’ is available to buy from 15th June.