For the past few months the world’s first drag choir have been rehearsing tirelessly at The Royal Vauxhall Tavern, in preparation for their grand unveiling. A mixture of stunning drag and vocal styles make up this unique chorus of talent! Creator and producer of the choir, Catia Ciarcio, told Jason Reid more…
Hiya Catia! You’re making history as the world’s first all drag choir. How do you feel about that?
A bit happy. Actually very happy.
Whose idea was it to put together the choir?
It was mine. I was daydreaming and thought to myself ‘could you imagine if you had a whole gaggle of drags singing Nirvana’.
You do daydream a lot…
I do. The more I thought about it the more I thought it was actually a great idea. I said it to my mum ‘imagine if you had a massive group of drag queens singing Nirvana?’ ‘A big group? What, like a choir?’ she said (my mum is ace at putting things in perspective). And thus the idea was born.
Your mum sounds brilliant. How have rehearsals been going?
They’ve been so exciting, because this hasn’t been done before, and we are making it more physical with choreography from the wonderful Tim McArthur. We’ve had a few dramas here and there but not with the choirettes.
Drama? Oooooh dish….any tantrums?
Well, of course there have been. I chuck them all the time. You can often find me throwing my dry martini at
the wall with a mascara-stained face when they sing
a dud note.
What’s your role?
I put it all together, including the MD and the Drag Choirettes, who were all asked to be involved because they were such fantastic singers. I basically produce the whole lot. I make sure it happens. I think that actually might be a description of a producer – you just make sure it happens.
Why aren’t you in it? We could drag you up.
Don’t be impertinent you whippersnapper.
I love it when you get all Thatcher like. Tell us briefly about the make up and dynamic of the choir.
They are a lovely, talented bunch of proud and fantastic queens which includes Shakkonda, Topsie Redfern, Stephanie Von Clitz, Woe Addams, Vinegar Strokes, Manila Rice and Roxx. But we are adding all the time. Soon we will be an army!
What kind of music can we expect?
Contemporary, pop, rock and the occasional traviata.
You had your first show at London Wonderground recently. How did it go?
The show at the Wonderground went spectacularly well. The crowd loved it and we had a huge response at the end of the song, I think almost the best reaction of the night so far. We sang a pride medley, which very much spoke to the crowd in light of recent events.
Where and when can we see the choir performing next?
We are at London Pride on the 25th June as part of the Pride Cabaret stage (Wardour Street) line up, and at Vauxhall Gardens on the Sunday. We also have a few guest appearances at other shows and then a full show at the RVT in September.
Who’s your favourite choir of all time? I bet it’s St. Winifreds?
Hmmm, The Spice Girls. Wait! Were they a choir?