Lusty Lovelace is a London based drag performer who performs regularly with the SOAS Drag Collective. They are known for their multi-lingual performances, gender bending, and unapologetic confrontation of societal issues. You can find them on Instagram @lustylovelace, Youtube, and on Wordpress writing about travel.
I am expression. I am makeup, frilly garments, and high heels. I am bright red hair which sweeps past my shoulders, earrings that stretch to my collarbone, gloves that glimmer in the stage light.
I am a whirlwind of aggression. I am the homophobia, transphobia, racism propelled at me since my youth. I am the ‘you’re not good enough’ and ‘you don’t look right.’
I am a drag artist. I thread these wisps of memory into my performance, my clothing, my presence. I translate my history into a universal experience through performance. When I’m on stage, I like to make people uncomfortable. Why am I reclaiming this word? Why are we challenging this person? Art made by LGBT+ people oftentimes sheds light on important issues everyone else isn’t aware of. It's passing the mic to marginalised voices in society, who just wish to live like everyone else.
With the SOAS Drag Collective, I found my voice. The collective is composed of performers from all across the gender spectrum, who perform burlesque, sing, play instruments, and the like. Their pride in their gender identity, their flair on stage, had unlocked mine. Drag had once been a method of expressing extreme femininity, and that is what I’d confined myself to. But among my peers, I realised I could be anything. Ever heard of a drag monarch?
One of my inspirations is Dorian Electra, and this is their song Mind Body Problem. After listening to it for the upteenth time, I decided to create a concept. Connecting with a song on a personal level is a wonderful thing, as your performance of it can tell a completely different story. For me, this song meant disconnect, longing, understanding. It caused confusion, confidence, then acceptance, which is all unleashed in performance.
Drag gave me permission to be me.
As part of Pride Month 2020, Crossbeam and Waterloo Festival are presenting a blog, featuring LGBTQIA+ artists and those who hold LGBTQIA+ art dear to them.
Josh Mock, curating the series, writes:
"It is my hope that by sharing the stories of diverse artists, we can appreciate and celebrate all those who strive to use art as a vehicle for LGBTQIA+ inclusion, activism, and advocacy."