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JASON REID’S CABARET INTERVIEW: Glimour

For the many years that I’ve been interviewing cabaret artists, I’ve purposefully maintained one resolute undercurrent: to give a voice to those who feel like they are unheard. With that in mind, my featured artist this month is the utterly fabulous asexual drag queen Glimour…

Do you think there’s a lack of understanding about ace (asexual) and aro (aromatic) people, and if so, how should it be remedied? 

Absolutely! Fellow performers frequently ask me what exactly the terms mean. There seems to be a real gap in knowledge and ace/aro representation on the queer cabaret scene, which is why I think it’s so important for myself and other ace/aro people, who are comfortable to do so, to be openly visible.

Whenever I do a show speaking openly about being ace/aro, at least one person approaches me to say they relate and feel seen. When I was first figuring myself out, I wish I knew of people like me, as it would have helped me come out earlier and be comfortable with myself faster.

I still remember when a friend recommend that I follow Yasmin Benoit (incredible asexual activist and model). I’ve never related to anyone more, and I really hope I can be that person to someone else one day. Representation is a super important way to remedy a lack of understanding.

For instance I have met some people who believe that ace people shouldn’t even be included in the queer community, which is really sad to hear. But of course for every person like that, there are those like my gorgeous cabaret family Haus of Cupcake who always support me.

How does being ace/aro influence your art?

If I didn’t realise I was ace/aro I honestly don’t think I’d be doing drag right now.

I spent a lot of my earlier years feeling very different, which affected my confidence a lot. It was only when I found out about asexuality in particular, that I felt that pressure lift. I realised there were people out there who felt a similar way. And without all that worry that I wasn’t normal, and that I should be in a relationship like everyone else, I could begin just focusing on myself and what I’ve always wanted to do since I was a kid: perform, try singing and burlesque, and just be on a stage.

I use my art to project exactly how I’m feeling, and how comfortable I am now with myself.  There’s still so many aspects of cabaret I want to explore, such as chair acrobatics, drag pole, and maybe a lipsync or two for a change.

The biggest misconception about ace/aro people? 

That we can’t talk about sex/relationships, don’t like showing our bodies and all feel the exact same way. Asexuality is a spectrum, and everyone feels differently about certain things. Myself personally, although I’m ace/aro, I am sex positive, body confident and dress in any and every way I want. Which I guess some people can’t wrap their head around. I pole dance, do burlesque, and wear fluffy red lingerie to my shows. For me, sexuality has no bearing on how I dress or act.

In a sentence, sum up a typical Glimour show. 

Pure glamour, sultry vocals… and maybe my ass.

Glimour performs at Phoenix Arts Club, 1 Phoenix St, WC2H 8BU on Friday 10th February. Get your tickets HERE.

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