Have you been to Bournemouth, dear readers? If you haven’t had a chance to visit the wonderful seaside town yet, you should put it on the top of your travel list because it is just a wonderful place with a lot of things to do and see! And, may we suggest one of our favorite places to go see a drag show: DYMK! A bar, that’s not only the home of For The Love Of Drag but which also puts on Rugirl shows from across the seasons. And yes, whilst we, of course, love Drag Race, over the years we’ve realized more and more how important it is to support ALL drag and so here on Dragadventures we always strive to support our fave artists, whether they happen to be on TV or not for that well-deserved limelight. Well, DYMK is home to some homegrown talent, and one, in particular, caught our eye during a Lawrence Chaney show we went to when Daniella Queen strutted onto the stage to perform in the UK Hun lipsync, their outfits, and confidence caught our eye!
Fast forward to five months later and they’ve become a regular in the phenomenal lineup in recent shows. So, with that said we had to grab her for a chat about her whirlwind performances, and those fantastic moves onstage, so welcome to the Dragadventures stage Miss Daniella Queen!
DA: Hi Daniella and welcome to Dragadventures! We first saw you on stage at DYMK to partake in the UK Hun lip sync battle with Lawrence Chaney. That was way back in July when we all finally got to venture outside and kind of enjoy “normal” life again, how did that moment feel for you? What were you looking forward to the most for your performance?
Daniella Queen: Hiya, thank you so much for having me, it was honestly incredible I was really looking forward to showing everyone that I knew the Bimini Choreography and that I could actually do it. It was my first time being back in DYMK and performing in drag since my evolution as Daniella. I was really excited for people to see that. Afterward, I had so many lovely comments and feedback from people.
DA: Since many of our readers are from outside Bournemouth (and the UK, really) – let’s meet you properly: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? What originally inspired you to get into drag and become the queen you are now? Do you have a specific memory from when you first wanted to become a drag queen?
DQ: Hello, I’m Daniella Queen, I’m 20 years old from Bournemouth and have been doing drag for two and a half years. Funnily enough, I got into drag because of Rupauls Drag Race it was amazing. I grew up watching it, I don’t have any specific memories that made me want to do drag. I just remember watching and thinking this is an art form that I could really see myself doing. It’s like an escape from reality, and two and a half years ago I really needed that.
DA: Speaking of Bournemouth drag … We definitely are looking forward to Friday every week, and think it’s safe to say Fierce Fridays have become a staple night out at DYMK. We love watching everyone lip-syncing for cash prizes and even win spots For the Love of Drag Rugirl shows. You yourself have won a few Fierce Fridays and got your spot supporting Tayce. How do you go about putting together the performance? Do you rehearse constantly before or just go with the moment?
DQ: Yes, I’m a two-time winner! Funnily enough, I’m very much a perfectionist, everything has to be perfectly timed. I usually plan a skeleton as I’m actually a choreographer I do a skeleton of what I want to incorporate and where I want things to go, and then put it together. Then the rest of it is in the moment, I absolutely love putting a routine together. I will sit there for a good hour listening to the music and going through songs and deleting them from a certain playlist until I’ve picked one. Then I ask my mum for her help too (laughs)
DA: One thing to expect from a performance of yours is unique and gorgeous outfits, do you make them yourself and who is your style icon? If you had to describe your drag to a newcomer what three words would you use?
DQ: Aww thank you, I absolutely love my outfits there’s always something different. Funnily enough, I’ve only ever actually made two of my outfits one of them being my Halloween outfit. The rest I pre-buy and add to I love stoning and dazzling things. That’s where my crazy side comes out. I don’t really have a style icon, I just like to go with what my mind rushes to. I don’t look at images for inspiration, I like to just go with my mind.
DA: For those unfamiliar with the Bournemouth drag scene (they’re missing out), who should they follow, and what makes the scene so fantastic?
DQ: Oh they are missing out on so much (laughs) when I first stepped onto the scene the first two queens I looked up to and still do to this day are Rougie and Charmaine Diamond White. Nowadays I would say people need to follow: Lady Alan, Tiffany Blue, Laylazee Susan, Rougie, Charmaine Diamond, and of course me (laughs)
DA: Another fellow Bournemouth DYMK queen, Tiffany Blue, painted your face on Instagram! How has it been working with the fellow DYMK girls, has it been a big learning curve? Have they given you any tips and tricks/taken you under their wing?
DQ: So funnily enough it was really fun Tiffany Blue, and Laylazee Susan, and I were all at DYMK and they were all giving me tips and tricks. I was like can I potentially come round and practice make-up tips/tricks and I did one half of my face and Tiffany did the other side. I looked at it and was like omg this is exactly where I wanted my drag to be. The DYMK girls are honestly the most welcoming queens, a lot of the time when it comes to working with drag queens there is definitely a stigma. Because first of all the scene is quite small and it can be quite catty but they took me in and under their wings, they’ve all been so so lovely. I have to say I’ve got mad respect for them, they deserve all the love and success in the world.
DA: With each performance that has passed, out of them all what has been your favorite so far? Ours was the Halloween moment – complete with blood and organs! How do you go about creating concepts for each show and is there anything, in particular, you still absolutely want to do on stage?
DQ: Oh my god, all of them, they have all been so incredible. But I’ve got to say funnily enough I think my Halloween performance was my favorite. I’m very much known and I don’t want to say notorious for being a lipsync queen/lipsync assassin and have referred to me as Laganja Estranja which I will happily take, I mean have you seen what she does?
I think Halloween was a massive turning point as I wasn’t dipping, tricking, and doing all this mad stuff, I was giving what I wanted. For me, I wanted to give this dark, horror evil witch and bit of buff in the twist. I stoned and made the dress which was incredible. I researched different ways to create the fake blood trickling coming out the mouth. It was by far my favorite, the response I was expecting to get negative comments, but it’s been the most positive. There’s a lot I want to do on stage, I’ve got stuff I’ve got planned and I’m not going to spill everything but horror is definitely in there!
DA: Would you say as with each show your confidence has soared, how has it been to receive such good responses from the audience?
DQ: Oh absolutely, when I first came back Bimini was my first taste of being back into the world, and then each performance has passed people have come up to me saying I was the performance of the night for them or lipsync assassin. I’ve had nothing but positive feedback and put me in a good place mentally because I actually stopped doing drag because of a toxic relationship and didn’t see myself coming back to drag. So when I did and got such positive comments and saw a change in me, and it’s been honestly so overwhelmingly positive. I’m in love with all of my fans each and every one of them.
DA: The last year has seen the Digital Drag scene rise and also produced so many amazing new concepts for shows and other performances alike. You’ve partaken in numerous Drag Walk numbers, how did you get involved in that, and do you think that has helped with your future performances in real life? Do you have a preference when it comes to performing digitally or “in real life”?
DQ: Oh I completely forgot about drag walk, so I did an Instagram competition and some of the girls from it created a group chat. From there we started doing digital drag shows together, and it was so lovely as it became a sisterhood. I really needed that, as I was going through a lot at that time like I said coming out of a toxic relationship many things were happening and I was in a bit of a dark place. Those girls really had my back and doing drag walk was insane, and I did my own drag shows even before that. It was really nice to do things not just for me but for other people, I mainly did it because we were in lockdown and I think we all needed that happiness.
I definitely prefer to perform in real life, as I get to interact with audiences and it makes me happy to be with people, speak to and interact with them. I love it there’s nothing like that in this world, I don’t think there’s no better feeling honestly.
DA: Before we let you go, we have the last quick-fire-question for you: If you could spend a day in someone else’s shoes, whose would they be, and why? Can be anyone from history or the present day!
DQ: This is a very good question I’m going to have to say, Alyssa Edwards. Like me she’s a choreographer, she has her own dance school. That for me has been one of my dreams, after a couple of years in the game and succeeding, I would love to have to my own dance school. So I would definitely have to say her also she can tongue pop, and I really cant, I kind of sound like a frog croaking (laughs)
DA: And finally what does 2022 hold for Daniella queen, what would you love to achieve in the future?
DQ: Oh 2022, people think that I’ve brought it this year. 2022 it’s going to be Daniella’s year, I mean I even have a tattoo of Daniella queen on my wrists. I plan on bringing out my own merch, I’d say in the future I’m definitely aiming high, aiming as high as I can. Merch is definitely in the works I’ve been designing and looking at prototypes. I’m actually in talks with a couple of artists about getting some designs put on t-shirts. So yeah, but thank you so much for having me, and honestly anytime you want to interview I’m always here for it (laughs)
So if you dont already go Follow Daniella Queen on her socials below: