Meet Crayola!

She’s the queen that’s brimming over with ebullience and unfailingly serves up many-splendored looks at every opportunity!

This week QX cabaret reporter Jason Reid got to know more about Crayola ahead of the launch of her new monthly residency, Crayola’s Madhouse, at the Matchstick Piehouse… 

Hey Crayola, thanks for taking time to chat. Who is Crayola?

Crayola is the Queen of Colour, and London’s very own ‘America’s Sweetheart.’ Sometimes a little kid, sometimes a she-devil, sometimes a colourful, clownish princess. You never really know what you’re gonna get; there are just so many colours in my box. 

Describe your performance style in three words. 

Smart, stupid, EXTRA.

When and why did you first start performing in drag? 

I’d always been a fan of drag as an audience member, and I dabbled a bit here in London at Madame Jojos before heading off to drama school in NYC. But it wasn’t until I’d graduated and had to do lip-sync battles as part of an acting internship program in Cincinnati, Ohio that I discovered drag as my true passion. That’s where Crayola was born. She started to get my full-time dedication when I moved back to London about a year ago. Even though she was born in Ohio, London has been formative to her upbringing

Who are your drag idols?

Mama Meth from Her Upstairs (RIP) and Brita Filter from NYC. They are not my drag mothers by any means (YouTube is my one true drag mom) but they really inspire me a lot, not just as performers but as community builders and matriarchs. Oh, and Myra Dubois – I’m just in awe of how that bitch can own a room. Working with her on Peter Pansexual was such a privilege.

You always seem so happy – what’s your secret?

No secret! I really am that happy most of the time. It sounds hella cheesy, but my mission statement as a queen, and just in life in general really, is to leave every room I walk into a little more beautiful by the time I walk out. Making people smile is a really easy way to do just that. 

Pop your iPhone on shuffle mode; which three songs play first? 

Burn from Hamilton.

Aura by Lady Gaga

Male High: Exercise 9. 

What’s the best piece of life advice you’ve been given?

Brita Filter taught me to make every single person at my gigs feel super-welcome. It’s what brings people back to your shows, and this is also how you build a community – one person at a time.

Tell me something about yourself that not many people know.

My front two teeth are fake and I once fainted whilst singing with a live band in Bangkok. Ironically, the song was You Raise Me Up. There may or may not be a video of it on YouTube…

What are you tired of hearing about? 

People policing drag, saying who should or shouldn’t be doing it, or making declarations about what it’s supposed to look like. Everybody deserves the space to discover and express themselves through whatever artistic means.

Fave new artists right now?

Flick De’Bean, Jennifer Joyride, Yshee Black, Luna Lestrange, Violet Vogue, Baby, Sierra Llobera, Soroya Marchelle, Chiyo Gomes, Mark Anthony, Nawel and Kate Butch. I’m in love with all of my siblings from Not Another Drag Competition Season 5 and it’s been so fun seeing everybody succeed and do their thing post-competition. 

RuPaul or Lily Savage?

I’d happily replace either of them. Joking aside, I’m not sure if it’s my youth or American upbringing coming through, but I’ve got to go with Ru. She’s far from perfect, but the good she has done for the community on a global scale is undeniable and I’m very grateful.

What’s next for Crayola?

Lots of gigs! From The Glory to Klubkids to regular hosting spots at The Karaoke Hole; she’s a busy lady. I’m also starting my own night on 5th September called Crayola’s Madhouse, which will premiere at a brand new venue, the Matchstick Piehouse in Deptford/New Cross. It’s going to be a molotov cocktail of curated, quality cabaret alongside the freshest talent the scene has to offer.

Crayola’s Madhouse is on September 5th at Matchstick Piehouse, Railway Arches
213-214, Edward Place, SE8 5HD.