GURL: Let’s start with an introduction, give us a couple of sentences about yourself.
Black Peppa: Black Peppa is a local Birmingham drag queen who has been on the drag scene since 2019. Since then has performed on many stages as a klubkid gogo boy and drag queen. They are currently the reigning queen of Church of Yshee 2019, and Eurodrag England 2020.
With a background of dance, and theatre, their performance numbers can range from high energy death drops, splits and high kicks to emotional ballads.
GURL: When and how did you fall in love with drag?
Black Peppa: I fell in love with drag when I came to the UK from the Caribbean. I am originally from St.Maarten which is a small island in the Caribbean and there is no drag scene there; furthermore it’s rather homophobic and being queer made me feel unsafe.
I had known about drag race since my teenage years but had to watch it discreetly on my laptop in the dark in my bedroom while my parents were asleep. When I migrated to UK for university and became more confident in my sexuality i then realised that drag is actually amazing and thought I’d give it a go for Halloween 2018 dressed as Michelle Pfieffer’s Catwoman.
It was only in 2019 when I was offered the chance to perform by Yshee Black I decided to give it a go and the feedback was amazing. Since then I have been performing in bars and clubs and competed in drag competitions. I’d say everything happened really quickly and before I knew it I had so many people looking forward to seeing me perform and urged me to create a drag page on Instagram.
GURL: That’s an interesting backstory you’ve got there, it sounds like there was a lot of queer struggle in the early days – something many of us can relate to. You look damn good at Catwoman though so you started out right and baby, you have blossomed since! Praise be Yshee for encouraging you to embrace your inner drag diva and blessing the world with your art.
GURL: Your drag aesthetic is so stunning, who are your main influences?
Black Peppa: I am by nature an artist and I am just inspired almost entirely by anything that I see maybe on the murals on street, building architecture and most of all fashion influences from really iconic designers. My all time favourite designer is Alexander McQueen; also love Iris Van Herpen, Paco Rabanne, Vivienne Westwood, and Olivier Rousteing (Balmain).
My style is very hard to put into one sentence but I can best describe it as fetish punk glamour meets Futurism, with a sophisticated twist of haute couture in there. I do have my club kid moments and most, if not all, of my outfits are made by myself whether it be hand sewn or by sewing machine. I utilise different textures (velvet/leather/pvc), junk and recycled scraps (screws/chicken wire/damaged housewares) and spend hours sometimes days to embellish pieces with rhinestones, studs, and fine details that brings the look even more over the top.
GURL: That’s a wonderful mix of influence though, so many iconic designers combine with a versatile range of personal style. Your Instagram page is like a fashion dream, everything is so perfectly fitted and stunning to look at.
GURL: Which of your looks is your current fave?
Black Peppa: As I am answering this I have so many cool looks being made that can easily become my favourite looks but based on what I have posted on social media already I’d say that my favourite look(s) to date is my red and black rose petal pieces. The red look comprises of hundreds or red rose petals individually hand sewn to the balloon sleeve leather dress and a giant rose petal hat to complete the look. The black rose petal look is more alien-esque dark glamour showing the osmosis of rose petals swarming over my body, up my neck and almost covering my face to reveal a sinister mug (face) containing snake eyes.
GURL: That bold, over-sized hat with the matching shoulder on your dress is gorgeous and looks so well done, it was actually the first image we saw of you and we hit follow SO hard. Obviously we adore the petal alien moment too, that pose and the face are gorgeous.
GURL: Do you have set goals for your drag career and if so, what are they?
Black Peppa: Like most drag queens I do have so many goals that I have already been working towards and can’t wait to achieve them.
Because I am a dancer/performer, my main goal and dream is to travel worldwide and perform to people. I want to share my light, bring smiles to everyone’s faces and just inspire others just as myself that drag is not just dressing up but it’s life changing; live your truth. With that being said I also hope to get on a certain TV show *wink* *wink*.
GURL: It would be great to see you on that certain show in the future, we can see you going far and becoming a very loved part of the drag race family – we’ll pop Ru a text and mention it
GURL: Which fellow drag artist would you be gagged to perform with?
Black Peppa: I would be gagged to perform with so many but hands down Violet Chachki, Shea Couleé, and Juno Birch. They have all been such huge influences in my drag career and the idea of ever performing with them would be full circle. My soul might leave my body.
GURL: Let’s just create a show with all four of you, that would be a wild night! Juno Birch is honestly such a fabulous UK legend and you’re not alone in wanting to work with the alien icon!
GURL: Outside of drag you model as a handsome man, which shoot was the most fun for you?
Black Peppa: Outside of drag yes I do model and have been before I even started drag. I did it part time just for some extra cash but now drag has clearly been sufficient. I’d say my favourite shoot was with London Photographer Robin Bharaj who shot my infamous nail jacket and mirror blazer.
GURL: The jackets alone are incredible, but you look very handsome in both of these and we’re fully here for a dramatic black and white moment!
GURL: Is there a place in the world you’d love the opportunity to visit?
Black Peppa: A place in the world I’d love to visit is hands down Las Vegas; and only because I know it would pop off!!
GURL: Do you have any words of wisdom for our queer youth?
Black Peppa: My words of wisdom would to go for your dream with all you’ve got. Don’t ever put in your head that your dream is too big or unattainable. Don’t let a single day go by wasted; be productive and utilise your time wisely. Someone once told me every minute of your life counts. Finally I’d say most of all surround to yourself with good people; avoid negativity and engage with people who are go getters, ambitious high achievers who you can learn from and will always want to see the best for you.
GURL: Fantastic advice right there, we fully agree
GURL: Finally, if you could take 3 other artists on tour to get worldwide exposure, who would you choose?
Black Peppa: If I could take 3 other artists on tour to take worldwide it would be be Soroya Marchelle and Dylan from London and Banksie from Manchester.
GURL: Three absolutely fierce people, we love it!
As always, we fully encourage heading straight to Instagram and getting this wonderful creature followed