Butch Queen host Louisianna Pur­chase on the art of be­ing fab­u­lous

Austin American-Statesman - - AUSTIN 360 -

On Aug. 11, the Austin drag queen com­pe­ti­tion Butch Queen, which pairs first­time drag queens with sea­soned coaches, cel­e­brates its fourth go-round on its big­gest stage to date, out­side at the Mo­hawk.

The show, pre­sented by Sound on Sound Fest, will be hosted by its creator, ac­claimed Austin queen Louisianna Pur­chase. Louisianna is also slated to open the show with “a jaw drop­ping heavy metal in­spired num­ber fea­tur­ing the vogue per­for­mance group House of Kenzo.”

We hit her up for more in­for­ma­tion about the com­pe­ti­tion, the se­crets to drag queen suc­cess and the art of be­ing fab­u­lous. You say the Austin drag scene has ex­ploded in the past five years. Any thoughts on what has driven the growth?

Drag has al­ways been ac­tive in Austin but re­ally took off when the drag show, Poo Poo Plat­ter, started. It was, and is, an amaz­ing show­case for left-of-cen­ter or “al­ter­na­tive” drag. The in­creas­ing pop­u­lar­ity of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” has def­i­nitely added to the in­flux of drag ev­ery­where as well. How did the idea for this com­pe­ti­tion come about?

I came up with the idea roughly 3 1/2 years ago. The idea orig­i­nally was to have a com­pe­ti­tion for burly, bearded or butch men who have never per­formed in drag, to com­pete against each other for the ti­tle of “Butch Queen.” We would pair them with es­tab­lished drag queens in town, who would coach them on the ins and outs of drag. The show is ba­si­cally the same as when we started, but we’ve broad­ened from the orig­i­nal idea of just hav­ing butch guys com­pete. Any good sto­ries from pre­vi­ous rounds?

My ab­so­lute fa­vorite mo­ment was dur­ing the first Butch Queen. A con­tes­tant named Ivy Profin reached into a chest and pulled out two cooked Cor­nish hens, wear­ing them like box­ing gloves. I al­most fell out of my chair with laugh­ter! What cri­te­ria do the judg­men­tal judges use to de­ter­mine the win­ner?

We judge on look, per­for­mance, con­cept and, most im­por­tantly, con­fi­dence.

Again, con­fi­dence! Not go­ing on that stage think­ing that you are go­ing to win is the worst mis­take. What are the clas­sic rookie mis­takes that first time drag queens make?

Too high of a heel their first night out, not pin­ning in their wigs, and pop­ping off their press-on nails ev­ery time they reach into their purse. Fi­nally, do you have any gen­eral tips on how to be fab­u­lous that you’ve picked up in your time in the drag world that mere mor­tals might be able to use in our ev­ery­day lives?

Never go to sleep in makeup, al­ways carry a folding fan, mois­tur­ize and carry your­self with con­fi­dence!

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