Whether it’s her monumental musical passions or the passion that took her all the way to RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, Anubis puts 100% into accomplishing her goals. While her elimination from Drag Race UK was swift, this musical maven (who counts Lady Gaga, Celine Dion and her Season 3 sister Victoria Scone as inspirations) has plenty up her bejeweled sleeve for the future. I sat down with this drag wunderkind to talk about the Drag Race UK experience, her experience dating as a bisexual person, and what the Drag Race experience was like from her perspective.
Michael Cook: Being part of the third season of Drag Race UK is an amazing accomplishment, even being the first queen eliminated. What has the experience been like so far?
Anubis: You know what, it’s absolute madness. I have dreamed about being on the show since I was about twelve or thirteen so it is kind of surreal now that I have grown up and been able to achieve one of my biggest dreams at such a young age. It is every single emotion that you can think of wrapped up into one; I am extremely excited, I am happy, I am nervous, I am scared for my life, it is literally everything wrapped up into one, but I think that is what makes it so exciting.
MC: When did you know that drag was going to be the passion that you would follow in life?
A:I would say maybe two, two and a half years ago. I have always done music, that has always been my main thing to make money, I. have been a singer for quite a while. With drag, I did drag first as Anubis about two and a half years ago. As I started working in the clubs and touring, that is when I thought it could be a really good career for me because people seem to like what I do..then I got on the show and they didn’t (laughs)! No, they did really. I think that is when I realized that it could be a viable career for me, I kind of stumbled into it. I have always loved theater and wigs and makeup and performing, so I think that drag incorporates all of my passions into one career.
MC: Music certainly seems to be an almost equal passion for you, right along with drag. Would that be fair to say?
A:I really love old jazz singers like Connie Francis, Ella Fitzgergald, Billie Holiday and Dinah Washington. I love the divas like Whitney and Celine, I love the artistry of Lady Gaga, Paloma Faith, those are some of the people that have inspired me. What music that I listen to really depends on my mood as well. A lot of people inspire me musically, but I would definitely say that it is an equal passion.
MC: You are a bisexual queen, possibly one of the first in the history of Drag Race. What reaction do you get fro women when you ask them out for coffee and you then dive into your career as a drag artist?
A:You know what, to be fair nine times out of ten it is kind of an instant no. I think it’s strange, to a degree, I understand the societal standards that we have around gender. It does baffle me sometimes. My drag, artistry, and creativity as an entertainer doesn’t come into play with my sexuality or my romantic side. Although the two may intertwine at point, I don’t think they are directly linked. So I do find it weird when people are turned off by that; I haven’t had many dates where people are open to it, apart from non-binary people or other genders.
MC: Was it surreal to be, at nineteen years old, walking into the Drag Race UK workroom and now suddenly be thrust into a competition where you are now on an equal and level playing field?
A: It was amazing. I have worked with some of the queens that were on my season during different shows and things, but there are lots of performers in particular, Victoria Scone, who has been a real inspiration for me for drag. I have always admired her makeup artistry, then when I found out that she could sing I was absolutely obsessed with her and completely in awe. I used to send her fan girl messages to say that I would love to work with her and how I loved her so much. A few months after I sent those, we were cast on the same season! I love Victoria very much and now she is one of my best friends in the world. It is very daunting, and really amazing. We all have each others backs and are very supportive of each other.
MC: Speaking of Victoria, having a cisgender queen as part of your cast is truly history-making.
A: I think it’s amazing. I mean from a selfish point of view alone, people are turning in to see her and they are also seeing us. From a political point of view, it is incredible that people can tune in and see this. It is a moment in queer history; Victoria is now a queer icon. To be the first cisgender woman it is absolutely incredible. She deserves it, she works so hard and her drag is impeccable. She is an incredible performer and to those that still discredit her because of her gender, I think when they watch the show they are going to realize that she is just as valid and that she is absolutely amazing. People are going to just fall in love with her, she is amazing.
MC: What is the one perspective of Drag Race that you went into with one perspective and then left with a completely different one?
A: Probably the idea of me winning, that seemed to disintegrate (laughs). I would say that I misinterpreted the idea of the runway. I do maybe wish that part of me for one of the outfits took it a bit more model-esque and feminine and posey, maybe with a bit of a pout. I feel like my drag is so camp and over the top that from a judges point of view, it could be seen as distracting to them, especially when what you are being judges on that week is the garment. Maybe I would change that, it might have been a bit of a misconception. Leaving at that episode was bit of a kick in the gut, but everything happens for a reason. I am very happy with what happened, I am super proud of myself, and I am happy with the outcome regardless.
MC: When is Anubis at Anubis’ most authentic self?
A: I would say just before I am about to perform. That is when the adrenaline kicks in, but it is kind of like I have to prep myself and tune in with my own head. That is when I feel the most authentically me.
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