Morgan McMichaels. Picture: Supplied
Morgan McMichaels. Picture: Supplied

Start your engines, Morgan McMichaels is in SA

By Jamal Grootboom Time of article published Feb 22, 2019

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The dead b*tch is alive and well and ready to show South African RuPaul’s Drag Race Fans why she is one of the most memorable queens from the show. 

Competing on season 2 and then returning in All Stars 3, Morgan McMichaels is one of the most open, honest and opinionated drag superstars to appear on the Emmy award-winning show. 

Morgan is set to perform at Babylon - The Jorbug Bar on Friday, 22 February and in Cape Town at Ze021 on Tuesday, 26 February 2019. 

We chatted to the Los Angeles-based drag queen to find out where she got her start in drag, her All Stars season 3 experience, thoughts on All Stars 4 and her views on the drag race community. 

Having gotten her start in drag as a joke, the LA queen found that drag was a way for her as a creative outlet and gateway to express her femininity. McMichael’s is also a drag daughter to Cher female impersonator and All Stars season 1 winner Chad Michaels. And it was actually her good friend Delta Work, who is a former contestant and won an Emmy for her hairstyling on the show, that introduced her to the drag legend in 2005. 

Speaking about her relationship with Chad she said, “She taught me how to paint and took me under her wing. Chad is also just an all-around good person”. 

When it comes to the LA queens, there have been many queens form the City of Angels that have gotten on the show. Morgan happens to be friends with Raja, Raven, Delta and Mayhem Miller. Talking about their relationship Morgan says that she’s been friends with Mayhem for 20 years. And the first time she met Delta, the Emmy award-winning drag queen was sitting at a fireplace and in lingerie from head to toe and have been friends since then. 

Morgan returned to the show last year in the controversial third season of All Stars and while her stint was short, she says that she accepted the invitation to come back to “show how I developed as a queen and to show my glow up”. She also said that she didn’t regret anything she did on the show and that she speaks her mind and it's the reason fansgravitaes towards her. 

RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars season 4 recently ended and left fans a bit dissatisfied with the double crowning of Monet X Change and Trinity The Tuck Taylor. Morgan, however, was glad about the double win and said the top four as a whole. The reason she feels that both of the queens were crowned is that they have two distinct types of drag. Monet is more relatable queen and people identify with her. While Trinity comes with a precise view for her drag esthetic which stems from her pageant background.  As a whole from the cast, she was also rooting for Monique Heart, Naomi Smalls and Latrice Royale.  

Morgan also made headline last October when she punched a Nazi. Speaking on how it all happened, she said that she was leaving the club with friends. A well-dressed man approached their car and shouted at her, “I’m gonna cut your f*ggot throat”. 

The unnamed man then went to take a swing at Morgan and she then hit him back which ended the fight. What she took away from this interaction is that members of the LGBTQI+ are not victims and that the community can fight back. 

Since moving the VH1 in the States, RuPaul’s Drag Race not only upped the quality of the show but also the frequency.  All-Stars seasons now happen annually followed by regular seasons almost directly afterwards. Fans of the show have been complaining about being a bit fatigued from the amount of drag race. 

Morgan begs to differ, saying that it should stay annual since everyone is benefiting from the show. 

The queens get more exposure, the promoters are able to book more queens and it only helps queer visibility. Citing the fact that All Stars opened the door for her to come to South Africa. 

The mainstream success as also grown the fan base, however, with the growth toxicity has also started entering the drag race community. For Morgan, she doesn’t allow any negativity on her social media platforms and blocks anyone that comes with hate. And that a lot of the negativity stems from fans looking for attention. Having fallen in the clap back trap a couple of times only for the person who said something mean to turn around and say that they love her.

Drag has a whole has become a cultural phenomenon and looking at the future of drag Morgan feels that it will only reach more people’s lives who wouldn’t be able to experience drag. Stating that the inclusion of trans queens, Sonique and Gia Gunn, in the Holi-slay Spectacular and All Stars 4 shows that we’re moving forward. 

Speaking on her upcoming performance Morgan says that SA fans can expect a lot of interaction and looks forward to watching and learning from the local queens.  

Morgan McMichaels is set to perform at Babylon -The Joburg Bar on 22 February and Zer021 Social Club in Cape Town on 26 February.

Johannesburg tickets are R150 pre-sale and R200 at the door. Meet and Greet R350 each. Available at  Howler.

Cape Town tickets are R150 pre-sale and R200 at the door. Meet and Greet R350 each. Available at  Howler.

The show is brought to you by S&S Productions and MVT Productions.

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