<intro pls>


My Drag Name is Miss Chili, My real name is Ezekiel, Im male, Indian, Living in Singapore in the Heartlands. 21 years of age, Im Queer and love everything about the arts.


<Where are you from and what do you do?>


Im from Singapore and Im a Fashion Assistant as well as a Freelance Graphic Designer.


<How often do you drag, and why?>


I do drag at least once or twice a month. Why? Maybe to get in touch with my Feminine side. HAHA!


<How long have you done drag?>


For a year.


<Why Miss Chili?>


The main reason was because I was dressed in red last Chinese new year from head to toe, went around to the gay scene, and people started to call me Chili. The name Chili also suits me cause Miss Chili is an Hot and Spicy Indian woman. HAHA!


<Your reason as to why you drag seems to be rather different than many. Can you elaborate more on the relationship between social work and dragging, from your perspective?>


Well, Drag Queens are known to make a statement in the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Queer) society. That is why I became a Drag Queen in the first place order to help the LGBTQ society to help them to understand that it is okay to be yourself and who you are on the inside and outside. Recently I have also worked with AFA (Action for Aids) to promote safe sex within the LGBTQ community.


<How far have you succeeded?>


Looking back after a year, I can safely say I am a Drag Queen that's been recognized easily. I have performed overseas, In nov last year. I have performed in Taiwan as Nicki Minaj. I had done counselling for young LGBTQ youths who are facing discrimination, coming out issues and relationship issues. Well I'm not a professional counselor, but I use my coming out journey and experiences to lead them to the right path and also being there for them and letting them know that they are not alone. Seeing them coming out from their issues and problems adds joy to my life.


<What or who are your inspirations? How did you start dragging?>


At first I have no inspirations or whatsoever. I was a gay comedian for 2 - 3 years then I venture out to dragging. It was honestly a whole new world for me, but I loved it. Well for now, maybe Ru Paul is my inspiration, cause she helps younger queens and helps them to shine to their fullest potential.


<What do you think about the difference between men who drag, cross dressers and transverstites? Often these labels are misleading and seemed to be more rude compared to each other>


Ah, Yes. too much confusion.

1) Drag Queen - Performer. There are straight men who are Drag Queens too.

2) Cross Dresser - Well, Maybe they feel like a women and its a form of expression to themselves, but they are still men, they just like to be in female clothing. Some of them could be androgynous.

3) Transvestites - Men / women who has gone for a sex change.


<How about the portrayal towards men who drag in Singapore’s media?>


Many of them think that all Drag Queens are Bitchy, Flamboyant and Feminine, well that is not true. But for now, Drag Queens are only accepted in performances in the arts but not as a form as expression, like dragging in public?


<In the performance, what were your responses towards the materials, mainly the newspapers (in which the headline was coincidentally pretty apt), the lily flower and red threads?>


To me,

1) The newspapers represent social discrimination, be it straight or gay, there is still gender and sexual discrimination within the society.

2) The Lily flowers represents courage and strength to be one's self. To be proud of one's self on the inside and outside.

3) The red threads represents the daily challenges in one's life. For example, providing a stable income for one's family, relationship issues, etc.


<For this project, I prefer the performer to decide on the venue, which they are most comfortable with and if possible, where they have memories upon.  In your case, you chose the space as a private indoor, why so? And as we were in the space, which was pretty open due to the windows, how do you feel?>


I guess in private indoor, I felt at ease to express myself. When I was already in full drag, people from the outside saw me as an very tall woman. So I think its okay.


<You did a number of actions. Do you mind sharing some and why you did that?>


Tearing Newspaper using my heels - breaking social discrimination

Removing Lily buds - Asking people to come out and be themselves

Taking Red Thread to tie the Lily flowers and chairs - There is a connection in life through our daily challenges and ourselves.

Throwing Newspaper and Pieces of lily over my head - The past is gone, the new has come.


<Emotionally, how do you feel towards the actions? You can also speak about the choice of music which were played during the performance.>


Well, I felt that everything there is a strong connection between myself and the actions. I chose mainly Florence and the Machine songs, No light, No light and Spectrum. This two songs stirred up the emotion of anger and a courageous spirit within me.


<I requested the performer to wear white. Do you feel that it is a good color in expressing the work? Why so?>


Yes. I think it is, as it makes me not to be so concerned on myself, but on the things that is happening around me.


<I want the actions done to be a form of relieve and expressions via movement that the performers wish to deliver outside their inner self. Do you think you were able to convey personal interests during the process?>


Yes. I think I had conveyed personal interests such as being yourself and to take pride in being who you are.


<I find you are a generally quiet man as of my limited observation, many men who drags are flamboyant and loud in nature. I find this intriguing so do you think generalization works for or against you?>


Well, Everyone thinks that all Drag Queens are loud and Flamboyant, that is not true, it is also a stereotype. For me when I tell people that I am a Drag Queen they do not believe me. I believe this generalization does not work for me as I am humble in nature. I have to be in a different persona most of the time when I do drag. Yup. Just do not mess with Miss Chili when you see her and everything will be fine. =D


<You sure have many things that you want to say about issues regarding men who drag. Spill them out here.>


Doesn't mean that feminine drag means that guy is a bottom and also Drag Queen is a dying trade in Singapore so have more shows for them :D


<If you were a Medieval game character, what will your element/s be? And what will your weapon/s be?>


My element will be water, my weapon will be not of destruction but of healing people's wounded hearts. Magical Healing Water?


<Cliché, but what are your dreams?>


My Dream as a Drag Queen is to help those who are in need and seeing them breaking off from their shells of fear and discrimination.





This conversation between the artist and Ezekiel Mathialagan was done via e-mail in March 2013. The exchanges above are presented without any censorship or correction of content, grammar, structures or any other forms of alteration.