Ian Stroughair brings A BRIEF HISTORY OF DRAG to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Name: Ian Stroughair
Name of Edinburgh show: Iconic – A Brief History of Drag
Venue: Assembly Festival Checkpoint
Performance time: 21.30
Show length: 1 hour
Ticket price: £10 – £13

Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your performing background?
Well, I have always been a singer much to my siblings annoyance. At age 14 I auditioned for a new musical called ‘Kes’ at The York, Theatre Royal. It was a professional show which needed an ensemble of kids. Much to my surprise I was cast. It was my first time on stage. I joined a ballet school in York just before my 16th birthday. Three months later my ballet teacher sent me for an audition for a theatre school. I got in and started that summer. After 2.5 years I was out into the world and working as a singer/dancer/actor. I have appeared in West End and musical productions of Cats, Fame, Chicago, Rent and also appeared on EastEnders as myself…. I know, CAMP!!!!

Tell me about your show, what it is all about?
Iconic – A Brief History of drag is a journey through my most favourite moments in drag history, whether it be music, pop culture, Film or theatre its those Iconic unforgettable drag events that inspired me to do drag and cultivate me into the queen I am now.

How long have you been working on this show and what is it that makes it relevant to audiences in 2018?
I have been performing the show on and off for just over 2 years. It originated in a workshop week in Southampton. Then went onto play the St James Theatre in London, the Southbank Underbelly Festival, a UK tour and of course now Assembly Edinburgh Festival. It is relevant because it is not only a trip down drag memory lane but also celebrating today’s drag and all of it in between. It is also a little lesson in drag history which is ALWAYS important. #stonewall

Do you have any top tips for surviving the Edinburgh Fringe Festival – both for performers and visitors?
If you are a singer, SLEEP LOT’S! Relax during the day, get out of the crowds and steam that voice. Visitors. Just go for it. It’s crazy for sure but to enjoy it fully you need to be swept along that rapid river. … Have some drinks and say yes to seeing as much as possible. Especially MY SHOW

What has been the funniest or most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you on stage?
This is boring but I cannot think of one. I am quite bad at corpsing but I have done it so much I can’t even think of a single one.

Who are your biggest inspirations in the industry and why?
Yikes that’s hard. I wouldn’t want to pick anyone out however I will say the pros. Those performers who give 100% every time, don’t complain and are in it every show. They are usually the most talented and nice.

Do you have any pre-show rituals?
I like a glass of wine and a laugh with my team.

Just all of the fun really. If you aren’t ready to start the fun backstage then something is clearly wrong. I say “F it, let’s do this, we have nothing to loose”

What other acts are you looking forward to seeing at Edinburgh Fringe?
I can’t wait to see “The Voice Behind the Stars” My dear friend Eliza Jackson’s debut in Edinburgh in a show she has written herself. It’s about the legendary ghost singer Marnie Nixon. I am SUPER proud of Eliza and was fortunate to see her last dress rehearsal in London.

Why do you think people should come and see your show over the thousands of others on at the fringe?
Because it is both super fun but also heartfelt. Its frivolous and silly then gut – wrenching poignant.

I have covered all bases so that folk can learn, laugh, cry and leave partying.


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