Klub kids are at the forefront of UK promoters who bring an array of fabulous Rugirl queens over. Whilst Rugirls are fantastic and essentially what brings many people to the shows, it’s the UK drag girls that are also shining in the limelight.
Mutha Tucka is just that, a somewhat veteran in the drag industry his famous aesthetic of ‘bearded lady’ has seen him support numerous acts over the years. Describing his drag persona as an ‘utter cunt, but has time for everyone.’ It is this that has got many raving about this queens performance and wonderful aesthetic.
An incredibly intelligent individual and the latest ambassador for shoe company Doctor Shoe Little, we managed to steal some time out of this busy queens schedule to bring a chat about the UK drag scene, Klub Kids, and exciting future projects!
Dragadventures: Where did the name Mutha Tucka originate from and what led you to a career in drag?
Mutha Tucka: I was in a local am drama society from about 13, and I got to play the pantomime dame from the ages of 17-22. I loved playing these parts and pushing how far I could go with my character. I moved from Kendal to Carlisle when I went to college I started a gay night at the local student club and dabbled in drag then.
I was called Fiona Latio (a pun on Fellatio) then when I moved to Newcastle to do my degree I was working at Sea Nightclub part-time and came up with Febreeze Ya Pouch, I was working their funky house night on a Saturday night in drag.
After a few years of just doing it for fun after I left Sea I went traveling around South America for a few months. A lot of people go traveling to find themselves, I found out I was a materialistic bitch who couldn’t cope with living out of a sweaty backpack. I came home from South America and decided that I wanted to give my drag a proper go. Then Mutha Tucka was born. The name came from an episode of Family Guy.
DA: What made you go for your drag aesthetic as the bearded lady? Do you have a favourite look out of all the ones you’ve done?
MT: I’m lazy and shaving is a pain in the arse. I can’t think of anything worse than dragging a razor over my face every day then putting makeup over skin that’s red raw. And in 2012 there was no one doing that look in the North East. And as they say in Gypsy “You gotta have a gimmick!”
I’m not sure about looks as I’ve had that many. (Laughs) Although recently Opium (Chris Niari) has been creating and designing a lot of my tour outfits and I think that the Twisted Circus tour outfit she made was amazing and with the thigh-high red boots from Doctor Shoe little, the whole outfit was a proper concept.
DA: Out of all the tours you’ve been able to support which has been your favourite to perform in?
MT: That’s a really difficult question. I have had the opportunity to work on some amazing tours with Klub Kids. Each tour is amazing and I love performing in different cities, it’s weird because different cities react so differently to each performance.
I think out of all the tours I’ve performed in my favourite might be the first time Klub Kids had Sasha Velour. I did a performance of Not the boy next door from The Boy from Oz mixed with Beyonce’s Grown woman. I had visuals behind me from when I was a baby right to now.
So like a big video montage of my life. I sent the video to my mum and brother and they loved it. So that made me really happy. And on the next tour, I had a young guy come up to me saying that after seeing that performance it helped him come out to his parents. So that made me cry a little.
It’s really cool that an idea I had when drunk helped someone be proud of their sexuality and help them come out to their family- I’m trying not to sound like Miss World there (laughs)
DA: What’s been the stand out moment of your career to date?
MT: I’ve been involved with Curious Arts Festival since it started 3 years ago in the North East. Curious is a fantastic Queer Arts Festival that runs throughout the North East and last year I got to work with David Hoyle who was one of the first queer artists I ever saw on Channel 4 when I was a kid.
He is so fucking cool, and getting to share the stage with him was a dream come true. It’s great to do things that aren’t the norm in drag and Curious recently won an Arts Council award at the North East Culture awards so going up to receive that award with the creator of the festival and being presented it by the CEO of the Arts Council in Hexham Abbey whilst in full drag was pretty fucking sweet.
DA: Before being able to tour/work with Klub Kids where did you get your start in performing?
MT: In Newcastle, there wasn’t much opportunity for my kind of drag to perform. So there was a group of us got together and created a night called Shade. We started by doing themed monthly nights at SR44 and kind of created this big bunch of “misfits” coming together every month to just enjoy a different style of drag.
DA: How would you describe your drag persona?
MT: Mutha Tucka is quite difficult to describe. She can be a total utter cunt but at the same time, she has time for everyone. When I’m on stage with a mic in front of my regulars at my residency in The Yard in Newcastle she has an acid tongue but I think that I get away with it because I take the piss out of myself so much too.
I hate Queens who take themselves too seriously it’s like I’m a 6ft 5″ queer in a dress it’s ridiculous and if you can’t take a step back and see that situation then people don’t get it and take offense to what you say.
DA: What quality does your drag persona have that you wish you had in your life off stage?
MT: I think there is a very fine line between me and Mutha. I think the only difference sometimes is that Mutha wears a dress.
DA: If a Rupauls Drag Race UK was to happen, would you apply? And if you appeared on Snatch Game who would you portray?
MT: I don’t think it will ever happen in the same format. Drag Race is a huge double-edged sword for the drag community in my opinion. I’ve been exceptionally lucky as I get to tour all the time with the girls, and if you go to those gigs you will hear a lot of the Ru Girls saying support your local drag but unfortunately, this doesn’t happen as much as it should.
I feel that the UK has some of the best drag in the world and just because they haven’t been lucky enough to get on a reality TV show doesn’t mean they aren’t as or more talented than the girls that have. If your city has a night that regularly puts on UK queens go and see them.
But if they did do one, of course, I would apply. I’d be stupid not to I’d love that RuPaul money. Snatch game is a tricky one. We did a snatch game with Klub Kids and I did Linda La Hughes from Gimme, Gimme, Gimme. I was a mess. So I don’t have a scooby who I’d do.
DA: What’s the local drag scene in Newcastle like? Who would you recommend readers keep an eye out for?
MT: Newcastle has a great drag scene. It’s really diverse and on most nights you can go to the bars and see queens performing and DJing. There is a really good mix of all styles of Drag, I’m actually going to be going on tour with Ophelia Balls on the Alaska tour in July. Ophelia is one of the first queens I met in Newcastle when I moved here 15 years ago. She’s like my drag Aunty (she’s not old enough to be my Drag mum) so I’m really excited about that.
We have a local annual competition called Drag Idol and it’s so much fun. This year was a mint year and so many strong queens were in the competition.
I’m obviously gonna say my Drag daughter Latrine Lurka is fabulous. She’s a really political queen and her performances have a really strong message.
The winner of this years competition was Gladys Duffy and I’ve been really lucky to get to know her on a personal level. She is fucking hilarious and an amazing performer.
If you get to see Travisty perform too make sure you do, she’s so stupid I love her.
I get to see a lot of UK queens when touring with Klub Kids and my all time favourite is Yshee Black, that queen is a frigging genius. Also, keep an eye out for Crayola from London, her performances are very very clever and I think she will go far.
DA: What does the future hold for you and what projects do you have coming up?
MT: Lots and lots of touring with Klub Kids. We’ve got some unreal tours coming up this year that I couldn’t possibly tell you about as Andrew Hoyle would kill me. But seriously these tours are next level.
I’ve just become a brand ambassador for Doctor Shoe Little which is a company that sells drag shoes and outfits. I’m working really closely with Rachael to bring you some amazing products. It’s really exciting.
I’ve also been working with Simone Fellows who has brought together a gaggle (that’s the correct terminology for a group of queens) of us including Travisty, Danni Delonco, Latrine, Gladys, and me. She has created this amazing project called Queers in Queer Places, and we all went down to Keswick in the Lake District a few weeks ago and took a series of unreal photos of us against the beautiful scenery around there. This project is to make people aware that queers exist in all walks of life and that if you are struggling with accepting your sexuality or gender that there are people nearer than you think that can help.
Keep up to date with all things Mutha Tucka on the following social media;
And catch Mutha Tucka on the Klub Kids circuit, and on the Alaska, one woman show tour in July tix available: http://www.klubkids.co.uk/