An Orlando queen and a member of the frightfully talented Haus Of Black, Waka Shame is a queen for the people. Consisting of intelligence, creativity and a one of a kind performer, we talk about the wildest thing she’s done on stage… it’s well…. very Dragula esque.
If you don’t know who she is then well you will now! Be prepared for a fantastic chat and in-depth interview getting to know this queen. Be prepared for exceptionally big things from Waka, a one to watch for sure!
Dragadventures: What made you venture into the drag scene and become a performer? Who inspired you to get started and led you to choose the drag name Waka Shame?
Waka Shame: As a teenager, I found solace in EDM music. I would go to shows and festivals with my friends and see all these people dressed up and loving each other under the lights. That’s where I allowed myself to begin dabbling in makeup and colorful outfits! Once I met my love, Mason (Dollya Black), he introduced me to wigs, pads, corsets, and a more sophisticated way of painting my face. I met Homely Pop at Parliament House, who encouraged me to start performing, and a friend of my mother introduced me to Axel Andrews, and shortly after I was onstage at Pulse for a Twisted Tuesday doing a 6-minute-long Nicki Minaj megamix in a look that Orlando artist Kelly Berry coined as lowbrow. My mother was laughing through tears of joy while I lip-synced about my pussy. The kickstart of my drag was at the beginning of 2016.
I had recently been diagnosed with HIV in 2015, and while I was watching the movie Trainwreck with Amy Schumer, I thought of the name Waka Shame, as a way to make something that caused me so much heartbreak into something that I can decorate colorfully and celebrate! The name Shame is also a touch on St. Peter, who was crucified upside down because he deemed himself unworthy to be crucified the same as Christ, and that cross has become a stapled symbol in my drag artistry, a symbol of heresy at first glance, but truly a representation of my humbled nature.
Drag has helped me express my art in a way that I’ve always dreamed of. In high school, all I wanted to do was be a part of a community of artists, and I’d spend all my time doodling these fantasy creatures and punk baddies, and I’d always sneak off for hot hook-ups or any sort of adventure. Now I’m living my fantasy and creating the creatures I’d dreamed of on my own body, and people recognize me for that. It’s incredibly rewarding!!
WS: For the first day, my look was a blue merbabe, inspired by a purple/blue iridescent leotard/skirt combo I had just made for fun, as well as a necklace that my friend, Sarah (@syruppalin on Instagram), had made for me out of a Monster High Doll mini head. The doll head is blue with purple hair, webbed nymph ears, and freckles, so of course, this was an easy look for me. The incorporation of stickers into my make up is inspired by deco kawaii fashion and several artists that I’ve seen on Tumblr and Instagram that decorate with stickers, pills, glitter, candy, etc.
The second day of DragCon for the Haüs of Black was “Red and Black.” My look was a deconstructed punk witch gown. The inspiration was very Elvira’s hot ginger stepdaughter sings lead for a screamo band. Victoria sculpted the breastplates that she and I were both wearing.
We had stayed in drag from 8am all the way to 2am at the Orpheum for Dragula World on the second day, which was a mistake after getting only a few hours of sleep and having to wake up early again Sunday morning, so Opulence and I chose to sleep in and go out of drag instead! Dollya is a speed-demon, though, so she still wore her gorgeous white gown and white updo. She had helped me by sewing together my white gown as well and teaching me how to waterfall braids on a white wig. Since the look didn’t make its appearance at DragCon, I’ll be wearing it this next week at Creature Feature as an elf princess—probably to perform iamamiwhoami. We’ll have drag king Andro Gin from Miami as our special guest, so it’ll be a great show!
DA: The Haus of Black is full of some stunningly talented queens, how did you all meet and what made you start up creature feature Tuesdays presented by Haus of Black?
WS: When I met Dollya Black, she was originally Some Bitch—well, Some Mercy Bitch, the daughter of Sorcha Mercy. Victoria was also a Mercy. However, Opulence Black has always been Victoria’s daughter. For one reason or another, Victoria and Some Bitch split from the Church of Mercy to become Black Haüs. At that time, I was Homely Pop’s daughter, still in love with Some Bitch (Mason) after a week affair. Once we started dating again around Valentine’s Day 2017 (hehe gay ) and I was around Black Haüs constantly, it just made sense to join as well.
DA: With one of the members of Haus of Black having appeared on Dragula (Victoria Black) Would you ever consider applying for Dragula? What would your strengths be if you were to compete?
WS: I have considered it, and I believe my strengths would be in my looks and performances. I express myself very creatively and being under the pressure of competing squeezes out some really good creative juices, so that’s always fun.
DA: Which person that you’ve met do you think has had the biggest influence on how you want to be seen as an artist?
WS: Honestly, a lot of my inspiration has come from my love and my family. It’s not so much one specific person as it is a lot of people. We all influence each other, and that’s the beauty of art.
DA: If you could perform with any queen who would it be and why? What would the perfect performance consist of?
WS: I would perform with Aja THE Kween. It would consist of rap, vogueing, powerhousing, Harajuku fashion reveals, FUR, lasers, and I’d probably play with my fiber optic whip.
DA: What is the drag scene like where you’re from and what local queens should we keep an eye out for?
Our up-and-comings currently are Haus of Cavalli, Venus Envy, Matryx, Homely Pop, Tarot Read, and of course me and Dollya’s drag baby, Draggedy Anne!
WS: One time, I ate poop and made out with an audience member—very 2 [Boys] 1 Cup. It was to the 2 Chainz feature on Jack Ü “Febreze”—YEAH, YEAH! IM THE SHIT! I SHOULD HAVE FEBREZE ON ME!” The theme that week for Creature Feature was Filth, Horror, & Glamour for the viewing party, and I had already eaten poop once for an Ugly challenge on an Instagram drag competition.
Expect something either soft and subdued or loud and electrifying, but usually some sort of expression of one of many facets of Waka! I tend to get slutty, have emotional moments, bounce around a lot, and whip those in the danger zone. Expect fantasy art deco fairy elf mermaid badass with a tiny waist and big booty.
WS: The love of my life, Mason. I wouldn’t be doing any of this if it weren’t for him. He’s my best friend and partner. It’s only been 2 1/2 years, but I’m looking forward to the rest of our lives and our drag adventures together.
DA: Are you working on any current projects and what does the future hold for Waka Shame? And where can fans find you next?
WS: Currently, we are taking on a Friday night event at Stonewall Bar, so theming, props and performers are in the works, TBA… And we are also getting ready for our Red, Thot, & Boom party with Adrianna Sparkle, as well as the American Trash Bash with Biqtch Pudding. We are usually planning a themed event for Creature Feature, but in between, we do Drag Roulette: when the audience chooses our songs. We’re also preparing a booth at DragCon NYC, so Air BnB’s have been purchased for that! And we’ve got a lot of great things planned!