Protecting the herd by sheltering indoors for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic isn’t preventing drag queens from reaching out and touching you (digitally speaking, that is). Bereft of bookings in the brick and mortar realm, big-name acts are stepping up their online game, in an effort to keep you entertained—and cultivate some coin, in the process.
Based in Los Angeles, two of our favorite funny, filthy, anything-goes girls aren’t gathering moss while biding their time away from the world’s finest clubs, theaters, bars, and back alleys. Reached via email, Jackie Beat and Sherry Vine weighed in, Q&A-style, on upcoming digital offerings, and plans for when the all-clear comes.
The Blade: Should the need for social distancing drag on, might we see a digital version of “Battle of the Bitches” (Beat and Vine’s two-person, traveling comedy act) and/or “Golden Girlz Live!” (a long-running stage version of the iconic sitcom)?
Jackie Beat: That is always an option, yes! I have become quite spoiled with these digital shows: No undergarments, no shoes, flaw-erasing RuPaul first season lighting and filters, and not having to tolerate my co-star/“friends!”
Sherry Vine: If it goes on, Jackie and I are prepared to start an OnlyFans site where people can tip us to kiss, etc. We actually have talked about this. Maybe we could do “Golden Girlz” or “Battle” on Zoom…
Blade: Have the two of you been working on/discussing future projects?
Jackie: Of course! You should be seeing one involving Alaska Thunderfuck very soon!
Sherry: Yes! We are working on several projects. We had to cancel “Who’s The Boss,” so that will return in the fall. “Golden Girlz” is still hopefully on for September. We also postponed shooting the pilot of a very exciting, secret project that we’ve been working on, but we intend to reschedule that as soon as we can. There are a few other projects we are allegedly writing/working on during this time. But we have both been bingeing on Netflix, lol.
Blade: Has this forced time away from public performance impacted your creativity, output, and approach to using online/social media as an expression of your artistry?
Jackie: Yes! Just ask Bianca Del Rio… According to her, I am posting way too much! Making memes, ripping Trump a new one, etc. But honestly, what does she know? She’s one of the least successful drag queens in history!
Sherry: To be honest, when the self-distancing started, I thought I would be so motivated to create and get projects done, lol. And I’m actually the opposite of how I normally am. I force myself to work out every morning. I’ve been doing a super-fun online dance class with Ryan Heffington. Then I create, write parodies, etc. BUT I am also spending a good amount of time eating, watching TV, and drinking red wine, lol. I will definitely be fasting before returning to the “real world.”
Blade: How can we access your work?
Jackie: Best way is to visit my website, MissJackieBeat.com, and check the schedule!
Blade: Jackie, you’ve got another stageit.com Digital Drag Fest show, “Jackie Beat’s Greatest Tits,” on April 20, 5 p.m. PST. What can we expect from this 30-minute show?
Jackie: My last show SOLD OUT, so don’t waste time getting tickets to this digital drag delight that promises to feature nothing but feel-good classics… Absolutely NO Coronavirus references! A 100% COVID-19 free zone! Just a bunch of classy songs about drag, dick, ‘n’ donuts. ALL LIVE SINGING! I am also guesting on Flaming Saddles Brunch, April 12, and Rhea Litre’s Quarantine Queen, April 13, both on Instagram Live.
Blade Notes: In April 6 Twitter and Instagram posts, Beat said, “Okay, I just bought a vocal processor, new microphone, mic stand, cords, green screen backdrop, 3 sequined backdrops in gold, black & hot pink, backdrop stand & ring light! NOTHING BUT THE BEST FOR MY FANS… Even in quarantine! (I SPENT A LOT!) Next show, 4/20!”
Blade: Sherry, what can we expect from “Let Me Be Your Jukebox,” another one of the Digital Drag Fest shows, via stageit.com (April 20, 6-6:30 PM PST)?
Sherry: Sherry will be your human jukebox. You don’t even need a nickel! Just request a song during her all-live singing/comedy/parody show. With hundreds of parodies of your favorite pop stars, Broadway, disco classics, Disney, and more, you can ask Sherry to perform one of your favorites, suggest a parody of your top Gaga hit, or just sit back and enjoy.
Blade: Have you had any notable virtual interactions with fans during this period of social distancing?
Jackie: Just very genuine ones saying things like, “I needed to laugh, thanks” and of course, tens of thousands saying I’m the best and “so much better than Bianca.” But please don’t print that because I don’t want her to feel bad. That’s not my style. EVERYBODY SAY LOVE!
Sherry: I’ve gotten a lot of sexy pics sent to me, lol! That had never happened before! I’ve been calling friends instead of texting. This is the time to connect old school!
Blade: Sherry, are there dates yet for the Instagram Live sessions? What can we expect?
Sherry: I don’t have dates set yet for Facebook and Instagram live shows. I will be announcing them the day before. Mostly I will use the free shows to “audition” new material and try out some ideas. That way people don’t feel ripped off if they’re a flop!
Blade: The all-clear is called and we’re allowed to gather in public again. What are the first things you’re going to do?
Jackie: SUCK DICK!
Sherry: Suck dick! I mean, perform. Oh, ok—BOTH!