Tonight at 9 on Twitch Drag-Súgur will be streaming the first ever online drag show in Iceland. Do not, under any circumstances, miss this opportunity to catch up with your favorite, self-isolating kings and queens. Speaking of catching up: a few hours before the show, Sigurður Guðjónsson (Gógó Starr) tells us how he and his drag family have been doing since the outbreak, how the drag scene has been holding up during the crisis, and gives us the usual sneak peek at tonight’s shenanigans.
It’s been just over two months since the first case of COVID-19 has been confirmed in Iceland. How have you been holding up?
“I’ve been trying to view this as some time off, having a cozy time watching Netflix, playing some video games and getting back into Dungeons and Dragons. But it has come to a point now where the days have melded together and I’m practically starving to put on a performance.
I am super excited that we at Drag-Súgur are banding together to bring you Iceland’s first online drag show!”
Can you tell us more about tonight’s show?
“Since we were all getting quite bored with this quarantine we thought that it’d be fun to do some creative drag performances and share it on the world wide web.
“Audience members can interact with us by using the chat-board on the side – I think it’ll be great fun!”
It’ll be streamed on Twitch.TV/dragsugur, where we have thirteen performers coming your way from various places in Iceland and the UK – it’s gonna be something!
Audience members can interact with us by using the chat-board on the side – I think it’ll be great fun! I think one of the things I am missing most is the interaction with the audience, so I can’t wait to invite everyone into my living room!”
How have the remote rehearsals been going?
“Since we’re doing this for the first time we decided in favor of prerecorded performances instead of a live feed for everyone – but don’t let that fool you – these drag performers are crazy and overflowing with creativity when it comes to sharing their art with you through this new platform.”
How has this whole situation affected your creativity?
“When you have a very regular creative outlet it’s really weird to suddenly stop. I, personally, have been focusing on a couple of different projects and creative outlets, like worldbuilding and roleplaying through D&D. I think taking my focus off drag for a little bit has helped me come at it again with a newfound excitement and inspiration.”
As a live performer, you need to perform to earn a living obviously: how did you and other artists around you manage to keep your head above water?
“It’s been a bit of a struggle. Since I’m basically out of a job due to the situation, I have applied for unemployment benefits but have yet to get a response. In the meantime I was lucky enough to have been saving up money for a bit before this and my fiancé still has his full time job.
I was also a part of an online drag show two weeks ago called Digital Drag, hosted by Biqtch Puddin. There are a lot of new online shows and opportunities popping up and I intend to go after them, and if that doesn’t work, I’ll make my own.”
“I think that this will definitely make us stronger as a community- this separation and inability to put on our regular shows has really shown us how important and inspiring they are.”
What kind of impact do you think these dark times will have on the Icelandic drag scene in the long run, if any at all?
“I think that this will definitely make us stronger as a community- this separation and inability to put on our regular shows has really shown us how important and inspiring they are. More than just doing some silly things on stage at a bar, it’s a time to come together and enjoy yourself, share your art with like-minded people and inspire everyone to let their freak flag fly.”