Milkshake in conversation with Chelseaboy
Milkshake would be nowhere without the constant inspiration and breathtaking bravery shared and shown in the queer community. For our ten year anniversary, we've portrayed some of our favorite people. These are their stories.
WHAT DRIVES YOU?
I really enjoy using my performance as a tool to create connection, to celebrate our queer identity and to investigate all of the different roles we can play. It’s a way for me to dive further into myself and ultimately into the world. I use drag to lift up the people around me and to liberate those around me to be their full selves.
That’s why I like to find a clash between a more modern appearance and for example older songs, to bridge the gap between memories that might be dear to someone and show them ways these songs could also connect to other identities than their own. The future is gender hybrid. That’s what I try to express in my art as well.
WHAT IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP TO MILKSHAKE?
Milkshake celebrates her tenth birthday this year. I was just 18 when I visited the first edition. I never missed one. I plan my holidays around the festival dates. I explored the Amsterdam nightlife alongside my yearly visits to Milkshake. I would start months in advance planning my looks and outfit. It’s such a beautiful gathering of all the wonderful birds of paradise our community holds. I really enjoy walking across the festival site and bumping into one sister after another as the festival is visited by so many people from across the world. It’s the only place I can imagine spending time with the Berlin queens, the French queens, the British queens, the American queens, you name it! Our community is international and coming together is such a powerful thing.
The last two editions I performed at the Flikker stage, which was a whole new experience. My memories of that day are like a kaleidoscope of so much laughter, love, hysteria en just … LOVE in abundance. Milkshake represents so many subcultures, but somehow the festival seems to have a unique angle that forms a unity within these cultures. It’s really fluid and the thing that connects us all is our shared humanity.
WHAT’S YOUR DREAM FOR OUR COMMUNITY?
I hope that we can come to a place in our community where every single being and every single body is celebrated for all that they are. All forms, all colors, standing strong as a community, with our hearts wide open. I hope the voice that represents us will become louder and louder, and that we will be seen as people that actually matter and are valued as equals.
A true utopia would be that our drag community dissolves in a way into a larger, all encompassing giant world filled with love and acceptance. In order to get there we need to decide together how we want to treat the differences that separate us. We have to pay homage to all the pain, sadness and loss that our community has had to deal with throughout the years. We have always been true at showing our colors so we need to reach a point of mutual understanding that will take us past these differences.
The world I dream of might be paradise on earth, it might be Walhalla. It might be called Milkshake.
Photography & Post Production: Wouter van Gens
Art Director: Marieke Samallo
Styling: Dylan Westerweel
Chief MUAH: Sebastiaan van der Ham
Make Up: ChelseaBoy
Body paint: Victoria Boo
Nails: Fleur Hissink
Interview: Maartje Weijers