GURL: First thing first, give us a little intro to yourself?
Farrah: My name is Stephen Welch I’m a professional dancer and choreographer, I’m currently studying Education at the University of Calgary where I was born and raised. I’ve travelled the world with dance and drag since I was 16 and always love learning the lessons each culture and country can teach me. I’ve been doing drag now for 15 years and find it such a joy to create not only a performance but the full look and character that aligns with the songs I’ve chosen.
GURL: Where did the initial inspiration for drag originate?
Farrah: At a young age my mother introduced me to the movie To Wong Foo Thanks For Everything Julie Newmar and that was that I was obsessed with drag. A few years later I watched Rocky Horror Picture Show with my mother as well and fell in love with the hyper sexuality of Frank and knew one day I’d wanna be like these characters. My biggest inspiration is to combine the sex and confidence of Frank with the poise and grace and maturity of Miss Vida Bohem played by Patrick Swayze.
GURL: Those are some great places to draw inspiration from and we’re glad to see you’ve been blossoming so well since you began!
GURL: How have you found doing drag during the pandemic?
Farrah: At first I wanted to remain in the public eye so I was painting live and doing random pop up shows on Instagram. With Mother’s Day in may that all changed. I had recently started a booking company with my Sister Nada Nuff and we had our first event pre-lockdown, but then had to stop all planning as everything closed. We launched a curb side Mother’s Day offer after being asked to perform for our dear friends mother, and the rest is herstory! Selling out our original group, we were able to hire three additional groups of queens to fulfil the overwhelming response we received! After a news story on every major network in Canada and making international news for this we organised and completed 179 curbside shows and 20 digital cameo style gifts for mothers all over Canada and parts of the US. During the months of June and July we had up to 14 queens on the streets of Calgary performing for the approved outdoor gatherings. I was in drag by 10 am doing my first show and getting home late in the evening after performing some days up to 8 events!
GURL: Wow, talk about impressive! You both absolutely nailed it and it’s amazing to see that you provided a good source of income for so many fellow artists too. We can’t wait to see you all in action when we get a chance to visit Canada.
GURL: So that booking company – how did that come around?
Farrah: I’ve always concentrated on where drag can take me next, being as the scene here is limited as we truly only have one gay bar and the politics are real. I’ve been hosting shows with Calgary’s legendary Cowboys Nightclub for the last 9 years and seen such great success with bringing drag into the straight bar world. Cowboys has been so supportive to even have me host a 4000 person drag brunch during Calgary’s claim to international fame the Stampede in their concert tent with amazing local talent, as well as Michelle Visage, Carson Kressley, Brooke Lynn Hytes, Ginger Minj, Sonique, and more. This event was so massive Carson mentioned it during his interview on a major American day time talk show days later. I knew with the response being so well received it was time to start my own booking company. And Hire Heels YYC was born and has flourished since with the amazing Mother’s Day adventure we started above!
GURL: Wow that’s fantastic, we can totally imagine the combination of drag and cowboys to be the most camp ever – we really want to come see that kinda show. Carson is such a babe, it’s lovely that he mentioned it and got some extra exposure for you.
GURL: If you could add any drag artist to your roster, who would it be?
Farrah: This question is tough as I would love to take this company and build it to be a management company to represent queens and get them gigs of all kinds. So I would of course say one day I want to expand to start representing drag professionally to the outside world in bigger scales than adult birthday clowns.
GURL: We are manifesting this into reality, got everything crossed that your success continues to grow and you can build a stunning drag company!
GURL: Are you part of a drag family?
Farrah: I am the matriarch of my drag family actually. I changed my drag name after the fame of Farrah Moan on her season as we shared the same name for years. Being I wanted to be independently known, the Nuff name was born! The family grew a few short months later when my best friend was battling with leaving drag behind him and moving on after a breakup with his partner to whom he started drag with. I ask him to join the Nuff family and offered him the name Nada Nuff and alas the Nuff sisters were born. We have two daughters who are growing up so quickly and becoming amazing queens themselves Nearah and Tana.
GURL: Oh it’s great to see how quickly you adapted after the name change and even started yourself a little family to go along with it. No doubt the Nuff family will be going great places.
GURL: Which of your recent looks are you most proud of?
Farrah: My monarch butterfly look is my favourite and I’m the most proud of it hands down. Starting it was rough and I was not sure it was going to work out but the final product was beyond my expectations of my self.
GURL: It’s such a beautiful look, we love the orange tones and how well the lip matches the eyes
GURL: Do you have a fave song to lip sync?
Farrah: River deep mountain high- Celine Dion And Strongest Suit – Broadways Aida.
GURL: Anthems for sure, we’re feeling Celine right now just a little more!
GURL: Is there a totally shocking fact about yourself that you can tell us?
Farrah: I have a completely irrational and traumatic response to all spaghetti noodles. I can’t even look at cooked spaghetti without panic and anxiety taking over.
GURL: So we’ll definitely avoid Italian restaurants when we take you out to dinner
GURL: If you were a superhero, what would your powers be?
Farrah: To make people feel as loved as they truly are. We are in a mental health crisis in this world and have been for years. Battling with mental health issues is hard as I know first hand, and having a super power to help those who to feel unloved to truly feel and understand just truly how much they are loved would be ideal to me.
GURL: That is such a wonderful power, one that we should all try and embrace on a daily basis – even a small gesture can help.
GURL: What does the rest of 2021 have in store for you?
Farrah: School, Work, and slaying my drag more every time I tap a brush to my face. I always say if we aren’t growing we are dying! No one can facilitate growth for you, you have to do it yourself.
GURL: Quick, name 3 drag artists we should follow?
Farrah: Of course I’m going to be extra and name more than three because my family deserves this recognition (Nearah Nuff, Tana Nuff and Nada Nuff) but so many more at the same time: Felicia Bonée, Misty Meadows-Gurl and Raye Sunshine
GURL: We’ll let you off cos the first 3 are family and every single one is gorgeous. Thank you!
Head straight to Instagram now and give this babe a follow: