ques­tion­naire Shangela

Exclaim! - - TABLE OF CONTENTS - SARAH MUR­PHY

SHANGELA IS A RUPAUL’S DRAG RACE FAN FAVOURITE, known for pop­ping out of boxes, shout­ing catch­phrases like “Hal­leloo!” and rou­tinely work­ing corn into her run­way looks. So it was quite the shock when the queen didn’t make the fi­nal two on the third sea­son of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars. “There’s no use in cry­ing over spilled milk,” the busy 36-year-old Los An­ge­les-based per­former says. On top of tour­ing non-stop with other Drag Race alum­nae, and her own com­edy show “Shangela Is Shook,” she’s also locked down movie roles in Bianca Del Rio’s Hur­ri­cane Bianca 2 and the Lady Gaga-star­ring re­make of A Star Is Born. The all-around en­ter­tainer also re­leased a new sin­gle, the Ryan Skyy-fea­tur­ing “Pay Me” — which she de­scribes as “up­beat dance mu­sic that makes you want to turn that tread­mill ve­loc­ity all the way up, honey” that’s about “stay­ing on your grind and never giv­ing up and never be­ing afraid of be­ing ex­actly who you are.”

What are your cur­rent pop cul­ture fix­a­tions?

Oh my god, we all know that Shangela loves Game of Thrones.

That’s numero uno, honey! I love Game of Thrones. Other ob­ses­sions of mine, mu­sic-wise, Be­y­oncé is com­ing out with the new tour. I love Be­y­oncé. I’m in love with Dua Lipa right now, and her mu­sic. I can’t wait for West­world to come back. There’s a new show called The Chi

— re­ally good.

What has been the most mem­o­rable or in­spi­ra­tion gig?

Alyssa Ed­wards and I per­formed as part of World Pride cel­e­bra­tions in Toronto a few years ago and it rained. They were like, “You prob­a­bly won’t be able to go on be­cause it’s rain­ing.” And we saw that the peo­ple of Toronto were not try­ing to leave the rain, so Alyssa and I were like, “You know what? Let’s do it! It’s Pride, we’re all here to cel­e­brate and be to­gether.” So we pulled two trash bags — clean trash bags — cut lit­tle holes for our arms,

pulled them over our dresses, got some um­brel­las out of the lost and found, and we went out there are per­formed “It’s Rain­ing Men.” And right when the song fin­ished — I couldn’t make this up — the rain cleared and a rain­bow came out. You can’t write this!

What’s the mean­est thing some­body has said to you be­fore, dur­ing or af­ter a gig?

Some­thing I had to over­come was peo­ple in meet-and-greets say­ing I was very po­lar­iz­ing. You ei­ther love Shangela or you’re like “Mmm, it’s not for me.” Some peo­ple would say, “Shangela, oh my god, I love you, but my boyfriend re­ally didn’t love you on the show. But tonight, af­ter see­ing your show, he loves you.” And I would be like, “O… kay. Thank you? Wel­come to the team, baby!”

What do you think of when you think of Canada?

Loonies and toonies! I al­ways think of pou­tine. Shangela loves to eat, honey! Any­where I go, I gotta taste the food.

What was the first CD or cas­sette you ever bought with your own money?

Mariah Carey’s Mu­sic Box, with “Dreamlover.” I loved it!

What was your most mem­o­rable day job?

I used to sell shoes at a place called Bealls depart­ment store in Paris, Texas. I loved it, even though peo­ple’s feet didn’t al­ways smell the best, and I had to re-fold clothes 20,000 times a day. That wore me out.

What has been your strangest celebrity en­counter?

Well, I think I was just in shock the time I met Cher. I started ap­proach­ing her and she goes [adopts Cher voice], “Oh my god, you’re so tiny.”

Who would be your ideal din­ner guest, liv­ing or dead, and what would you serve them?

I would love to have din­ner with Tina Turner. I love her. She’s al­ways been a fire­cracker on stage to me. What would I serve her? I don’t know if she would eat it, but the only thing I know is how to or­der Pop­eye’s chicken. Or­der up some chicken and talk about her ca­reer and life, and it would be amaz­ing to tell her how much she’s in­spired me. I looove Tina Turner. And I did her my first time in “Snatch Game” on Drag Race!

What is your idea of a per­fect Sun­day?

A per­fect day off is me sit­ting in bed with my phone off. The phone off and not feel­ing bad that the phone is off. When my phone is off, I’m usu­ally like, “I should turn my phone on, I’m gonna miss some­thing.” So, in bed, phone off, watch­ing Sis­ter Act.

What is some­thing that every­one should shut up about?

I’m the loud­est girl in the room, it’s hard for me to tell any­body to shut up.

What makes you want to take it off and get it on?

Well, I’m a drag queen, so there’s a lot of tak­ing off. By the time I get it all off, I prob­a­bly don’t want to get it on no more.

Is there any ad­vice you should have taken but didn’t?

One time my mom told me to in­vest in Bit­coin. A guy got in our Uber and was like, “You need to in­vest in Bit­coin.” I was like, “Mom, I’m not tak­ing stock tips from a back­seat Uber per­son.” The next week Bit­coin, like, quadru­pled.

it’s hard for me to tell any­body to shut up.”

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