It’s Pride month and for many, Pride is a symbolic recognition of LGBTQ2S history and the struggle our community faced. We enjoy watching “RuPaul’s Drag Race” today and shouldn’t take for granted that shows like this are now more popular and accepted. I caught up with one of Toronto’s ‘fiercest’ drag queens, Miss Fiercalicious to learn more about her performance style, our community and the future of Drag and we are feeling the fantasy!
1 This pandemic has affected a lot of people in many different ways, can you speak to how this has impacted you as a performer and the queer community?
Miss Fiercalicious: Due to the pandemic, all bars and clubs are currently closed. This has become an issue for myself and other drag performers because we currently don’t have any physical venues to be able to perform at. A lot of these bars and clubs are also safe spaces for the queer community and it has been very difficult for myself, and I’m sure many others, to have to adapt to these circumstances.
2 You recently put on a fundraiser with Noah Cyrus for Glad Day Bookshop’s Emergency Survival Fund, supporting LGBTQ2S artists who have been put out of work due to COVID-19. The bookshop is a safe space and has been serving the LGBTQ2S community since 1970. How important is it to you to support your fellow artists and preserve our queer spaces?
Miss Fiercalicious: It’s very important to me to support my fellow artists because a lot of us have been affected differently by the pandemic. I’m very fortunate to live with family during this pandemic, however I recognize that for many other artists it has been very difficult to afford the cost of living, which is why I organized a fundraiser to help out in any way that I could. It’s also very important to me to preserve queer spaces, as these venues not only provide artists with work, but they also provide us with safe spaces to freely express ourselves in a judgement free zone.
3 Many queens use descriptors to characterize their drag and performance style (comedy, fashion, etc.) Tell us more about your personal drag style, and what descriptors you would use to describe it.
Miss Fiercalicious: My drag has been heavily influenced by pageantry, however I don’t like to restrict myself to one category as I consider myself to be a versatile performer. Pageantry has taught me the importance of hardwork and dedication to your craft, and as a result I’ve become a more polished artist. But I also love exploring all aspects of drag because that’s the beauty of drag, it has no restrictions.
4 From incredible shows at El Convento Rico and Crews & Tango – can you tell us more about how you started your drag career?
Miss Fiercalicious: I actually started drag in London, Ontario while I was attending university there. However, there weren’t many opportunities for my drag to grow there which is why I came back to Toronto. Through competing in competitions and pageants like Miss El Convento Rico, Woody’s Queen of Halloween and Crews & Tangos Drag Race I have challenged myself as an artist, but have also been able to make a name for myself and show what I am capable of.
5 Can you give us more background as to where the name ‘Miss Fiercalicious’ came from?
Miss Fiercalicious: The name Miss Fiercalicious started off as a joke between me and my best friend years before I started doing drag. Once I started drag I loved the name and it stuck! I think it describes me perfectly, I’m fierce but also delicious.
6 In recent years, drag has gained popularity with shows like RuPaul’s Drag Race and Canada’s Drag Race, how do you feel about this art form being thrust into the mainstream and how has this affected your business?
Miss Fiercalicious: I believe that drag going mainstream has been very beneficial for the artform. Shows like Rupaul’s Drag Race have exposed a lot more people to drag, one of them being myself! I’m part of the generation that has started drag because of Drag Race, and I’m very grateful for all the opportunities that have been given to me to allow me to grow and explore my drag. Drag going mainstream has brought a lot more business to the bars, with many new people coming in to enjoy live drag shows. It has also opened the doors for brands to partner with drag queens, which I’ve been fortunate to be a part of several campaigns.
7 What can drag show audience members expect from a Miss Fiercalicious show?
Miss Fiercalicious: Miss Fiercalicious always has stunning makeup looks to showcase and fun costumes. I love pop culture and heavily incorporate it into my drag. Pop artists like Ariana Grande have been huge influences of mine. But you never know what to expect from me! I can go from a slow and sexy performance, to an impersonation of Prince to doing a deathdrop off a church alter!
Drag has pushed me out of my box to try new experiences,
8 Have you always loved performing and what is your favourite part?
Miss Fiercalicious: I haven’t always been a performer. Drag has pushed me out of my box to try new experiences, and I’ve taken up dance classes for the past 2 and a half years. I suffer from anxiety and being in social settings was tough for me at first, but I’ve become a more confident person now because of drag and love interacting with audience members and meeting new people.
9 We’ve seen a lot of different audiences, as shows become more popular are there tips you can share with us to be better audience members?
Miss Fiercalicious: Be respectful towards entertainers, we put a lot of time and money into our drag. You can be a great audience member by simply showing up and cheering on drag artists. Your support goes a long way!
10 For you, how important is social media in creating your image?
Miss Fiercalicious: Social media is really important in creating your image because it’s an amazing tool to showcase your art to the world. Especially in today’s age when performers can’t perform in physical venues, social media is a great way for artists to be able to continue to create content for people to view on a global scale.
11 Can you elaborate on the drag scene here in Toronto? Is it close and/or competitive?
Miss Fiercalicious: The drag scene in Toronto is very competitive due to the fact that there are only a limited number of venues and opportunities for performing and there are so many drag artists and new ones emerging often. However, the drag scene in Toronto is also very close because we all love and support each other, and want each other to succeed. It’s important to realize that other people’s success does not mean you are a failure, and that they can open the door to many more opportunities for you.
12 How long does it take you to get into drag (including make-up!)?
Miss Fiercalicious: I like to give myself about 2 hours for the full process, which is makeup, hair, getting into tights and padding, and finally costume.
13 Where do you shop for dresses, wigs and make-up?
Miss Fiercalicious: A majority of my costumes have been made by local designers, which I then embellish with things like rhinestones and pearls. Wigs and makeup can be bought online, and if you shop wisely you can find good quality items for low prices!
14 What advice do you have for any young queens trying to make it?
Miss Fiercalicious: Be respectful. Look up to your elders for help and support. Be willing to grow and change.
15 It has been said that drag reveals who you are. Do you believe this and what have you learned about yourself through this art form?
Miss Fiercalicious: Yes, I believe drag does reveal who you are. Drag has taught me that I can accomplish anything that I put my mind to and work hard for. It has pushed my creative boundaries and allowed me to explore a whole different side of myself that I didn’t know existed.
16 Drag seems glamorous, but we know it’s hard work. Can you share with us your routine before and after shows? How long does your prep, both for your look and your performance?
Miss Fiercalicious: Drag can be a very difficult and long process. Putting together looks can take days, even weeks, because of the materials that need to be purchased as well as the construction that then goes into making costumes. Embellishing costumes is also a very time consuming process but the final results are so rewarding. When I get ready for shows, I like to listen to fun music I enjoy to get me in the mindset for performing. After shows I try to get as much rest as possible, so I’m feeling fresh and ready to take one a new day.
17 What do you believe is the future of drag?
Miss Fiercalicious: I believe that the future of drag will expand to be more accepting towards all forms of drag. Right now the majority of people are accepting of traditional drag queens, however there are so many more types of drag including drag kings, gender performers and alternative drag. All different forms of drag are valid and it can be so entertaining to watch an artist who is really passionate about what they are doing.
18 What stigmas have you faced from being a drag queen?
Miss Fiercalicious: Some people believe that drag queens are lazy and that drag isn’t a viable career. However, drag queens are some of the hardest working people I know. It takes a lot of skill to be a good drag entertainer, you need to be able to do makeup, style hair, design costumes, perform, engage with audiences, and so much more. By working hard it’s definitely possible to have a long and successful career in the art of drag.
19 How can our readers support you and when/where can we see you perform (both in-person or virtually for the time being)?
Miss Fiercalicious: You can follow me on Instagram at @missfiercalicious! You can also tune in to watch me co-host a Virtual Drag Brunch on @sodastreamcanada this Sunday, June 14 at 11:00AM! I have partnered with SodaStream Canada to celebrate the launch of their Limited-Edition “For the Love of Tomorrow” Pride kit! All proceeds go to Pflag Canada–Canada’s only national organization that offers peer-to-peer support to help with issues of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.