JUNIPER LAI - Host & Performer FF018

  Photo credit:  Eivind Hansen

Photo credit: Eivind Hansen

Juniper Lai, is a fabulous East London based queen, performer and all round frolickingly fun babe. With a penchant for a good hair whip and a secret background in Fashion, her outfits are 'made to measure' and lewks to kill. We're delighted to have Juniper come and join us for our 18th Fèmmme Fraîche Fraiche party on Aug 25th, as our Hostess with the mostess; serving up a slice-of-nice atop the Dalston Superstore bar, for our special Bank Holiday kiki. We had a quick chat with Juniper to dig a little deeper into her wonderfully whimsical world.  

  photo credit:  Fernando Berry

photo credit: Fernando Berry

JUNIPER LAI

Oh Hey Juniper, thanks for having a lil' chat with us and for coming to host our next Fèmmme Fraîche on the 25th, we’re trés excited to have you! So first up, tell us when did you start to perform on the queer scene and how did it first come about?
The first time I started dressing up and performing was at Vogue Fabrics when my friends and I were in a band called Big Girls just a couple of years back, we did a few gigs dragged up, I always wanted to do it and it just opened up a can of draggy worms

Draggy worms sounds delicious, so when was your first official performance, where was it and what party was it at?
After discovering I could dance at numerous raves and after parties, I joined the Mints Dance Troupe; Lexy, Pinky Bits and Lizard Kween up on the bar at Dalston Superstore for Mints a night put together by Emma Kroeger and Jon Arnold

ooh we do love Mints! so what’s been your most memorable gig to date and why?
So many unforgettable times to choose from, but the best show to date would probably be a couple of weeks ago when we were dancing at the Art’s House Festival, with Artwork and DJ Harvey. Definitely have Lucy Fizz to thank for booking me, along with 5 star line up of drag performers, massive crowd of 6000, the energy was incredible and made me realise this is the best job I could ask for, to be a complete stupid idiot on a stage, dance to great music with my friends and get praised for it.

Lucy Fizz is such a legend! So we hear you’re a graduate of London College of Fashion and winner of the FAD competition 2015 does your background in fashion help inspire your looks and do you make all your own outfits to perform in?
Ooh how did you find that out? Well yeah, fashion is a world I kind of left behind, but I adore the process of designing and making. A background in tailoring and sewing is certainly useful when making looks for myself and or altering and putting things I already own together. For example, making sure I always have at least one arse cheek out. As well as sewing stuff for myself, I also take pleasure in making looks and pieces for other queens and performers

Haha the one compulsary cheeky ass cheek! Do you consider yourself as a ‘female drag queen’ or how would you describe yourself as a performer and are you offended by or do you embrace the terms ‘bio-queen’ ‘Faux queen’ or ‘diva queen’.
Yes, I think terms such as bio queen or diva queen are offensive in a way where its irritating, a drag queen is a drag queen, regardless of what someones gender identity is, drag is drag, separating it out into sub categories just so someone else can make sense of it, is annoying. Instead, people should take it for what it is and let go of the fact that just because I’m female I must be othered.

AMEN! At Femmme Fraiche we’re all about female empowerment and supporting female artists, who are your other fave female performers on the scene we should check out?
My favourite female performers just to name a few would be my friends that have supported me, provided me the spaces, opportunities to perform and grow. They each are legendary, pushing all the boundaries and absolute powerhouses to be reckoned with, Emma Kroeger , Georgie Bee & Lucy Fizz

Three of our faves too!! So what can we expect from you on the 25th?
Dancing, a lot of hair whipping, and a broken neck

Don't worry babe, we'll have the neck brace ready for you! And finally where else can we usually see you performing regularly or what other gigs do you have coming up we can come and see you?
I’ll definitely be around, I’ve been dancing with Little Gay Brother and booked to dance with other incredible dancers on the scene throughout this summer, I will be dancing Chapter 10 on the 26th so come on through to see me twirl. Occasionally, you’ll see my drunkenly flop about atop the DSS bar for the odd event, other than that I’m waiting for my big break regular gig (throwing those hints out into the East London atmos).

So there you have it, a small insight into the world of Juniper Lai. If you're looking for a fabulous performer, book her!! until then, make sure you come catch her hosting, upstairs in the bar of Dalston Superstore this Saturday 25th Aug for our next Fèmmme Fraîche and follow her on her socials below

 
Michelle Manetti