One thing I’ve learned was that people can tell when things in your life are not going well because it comes through in your performance, no matter how much you think you’ve masked it. That happened to me one time in a previous show. Someone came up to me after that show and said, “You’re really unhappy, aren’t you?” I just burst into tears because I was going through such a rough time. It really made me think about this and notice it in other performers.
Now, before a show, I take a few minutes to empty my mind out, so any issues I’m having are not right there in the forefront. I just go into the bathroom, run some water, and just listen to the water run. It’s like a zen fountain, but it really works.
Varla Jean Merman (X)
I was doing these videos down in New Orleans and a lot of the drag there was lyp-synching and impressions and I had a friend who went to school with me and he moved to NY and he called me one day to tell me he just saw this drag queen do a monologue to Wagner’s “Liebestod” and I was like what is going on in NYC. Well, it turns out that drag queen was Miss Coco Peru. I just thought at the time, I could never do something like that in a bar in Louisiana because that is just not what the drag scene was like, so I moved to NY to try pursue my career further, but never thought it would become a career, so while I was pursuing my drag career, I took at job in advertising at Ogilve & Mather as an art director. As I was doing drag, I finally met Miss Coco at a benefit and he was so nice to me. He introduced me to people and then I went to see his cabaret show and I was so inspired by that, I wanted to do my own thing, but not what he does. He’s a monologuest and I don’t do that, I could never do that. He really helped me out…he set up me up with a piano player and was just really wonderful. He’s just so genuine. I now realize in my career that ones who are farther along than you and do help you out, are really confident in their career, while the others who don’t help you out are not as confident. He was very pivotal in showing me that you can do whatever you want to do in drag that hasn’t be done before and to this day, we remain good friends.
Varla Jean Merman (X)