A kiki with Portia Clinique
This month I had the amazing pleasure of a kiki with Portia Clinique. You may not be familiar with her yet, but this Lady is setting the town on fire! Her incredible makeup skills, stylish looks, and jaw-dropping performances make her one queen you do not wanna miss. So let’s get to know the girl behind the makeup!
What sparked your interest in drag?
My interest in drag and female impersonation started close to four-and-a-half or five years ago. I was 19 and was (and still am) a kid with a dream. I have always been into performing, I grew up playing flute and guitar. I knew I wanted to be a performer. I was really getting into makeup at the time and trying to make it a gig. I thought that, if people could see what I could do to my face, then they would want me as a makeup artist.
I have to give credit to Holly Vegas, who is now retired. She saw the potential in me and allowed me to perform at her show in my home town. Everyone thought I was of age, and I just continued to work for tips until I became of age and was able to make a name for myself.
Have you faced any hardships with being gay or doing drag?
I could write a bestselling novel on this subject! I feel like, growing up, the kids knew I was gay before I even knew what gay meant. High school was a living nightmare for me. But once I left I never looked back. But, man, does it feel good to go home! It's like the awkward gay goose has turned into a swan when I do!
It doesn't affect me now-a-days. I don't think most people want to mess with a 7-foot-tall drag queen in a spiky heel, anyways. Plus, I'm really good at killing people with absolute kindness.
My family was totally cool about it. I have a gay brother and a gay sister. By the time I came out, it was old news. When my mom can make it to my shows, she's usually in the very front of the crowd, waving her dollars. She's always been there and stood by my dreams!
What is the hardest part of doing drag and why?
Well it's not hard anymore … but understanding that there are going to be people who don't get your drag, or don't like your drag, or want to change your drag. And you just have to not care, take it in stride, continue to be yourself, and learn from those who want to help—because that's when you’re at your best in drag and when you'll start to improve the most!
How would you describe your drag persona, style and performances?
That's so tough to say: I take from all kinds of people, places and things. Portia's persona is very viper-esque. I was probably a rock ‘n roll sex goddess in a past life. I love being nasty and sexy, and I think I'm very sultry and eye catching. A good definition of Portia would be leather, sex, glitter, and a good hair whip!
Okay, be honest girl: ever experienced any shade from other queens you can tell us about?
All the damn time! I've definitely been banned from bars for co-hosting my own (harmless) show. I get it though: it's business, and you either play by the rules, make them up, or do your own thing. I think all drag queens get intimidated anytime a queen with a beat face and rhythm walks onto a stage. I'm used to it. I don't give performers any time to get nasty with me. And I'm really not out to steal anyone’s spot light. Everyone wants to be the best. I Just do my own thing, and all I really care about is the impression I leave on stage. Queens respect that. And for the most part I feel like the community here is tight. We're SO lucky!
Who do you think is the all-time best drag performer?
... in Nashville? Can I have more than one? Drag changes all the time. My opinion on the best changes too! But in Nashville, I can't not say Aurora Sexton. She IS the current reigning Miss Gay USofA, and that package was dope. I'd love to crawl inside her mind for five minutes!
I notice on your social media that you're in a relationship. Has it been difficult dating and doing drag for you?
No, it never has been. I've always been like, "Hey! Yo! I put on heels and Dance my a** off." They either go running or stick around. Drag is a part of me, but I'm still a man. I'm very lucky to have what I have with my partner now; I couldn't be any luckier or happier!
What is your idea of the perfect man?
The one I have now! A good smile, mischievous, tender-hearted bad boy, but sweet when no one’s around.
Who is the biggest inspiration in your life and why?
Oh gosh, my family. We all have so many dreams we're chasing, and we're all so far away from each other. But, when it comes down to it, we absolutely have each other’s backs, our support system is strong. I love you guys!
Where can our readers catch your performances?
Everywhere: I travel, and there’s QDP, Lipstick, PLAY, Shehaw, Trax… Book me! I know how to get down. I dress to impress, and I have the best nails in town. CUM SEE ME!!!
You can follow Portia on Facebook as Portia Clinique, and on Instagram @CharliexClinique.