Jun 23, 2013

[Pink Scene] Know Your Oh Divas - Jay

Jay is actually the very first Oh Diva that I ever got to meet, although at the time he was out of drag and pretty tired from a busy Saturday night. But over the years I and other O Bar patrons have been repeatedly blown away by her intensity and showmanship each and every night.

It's hard to perfectly explain what it is about Jay's performances that I like the most. Maybe it's the fact that we never really know which character she will represent next time she takes the stage from Lady GaGa to Nicki Minaj.

Admittedly, I'll know her as Jay, although her official drag name is actually Jaja. No matter what name she goes by, Jay is one fierce drag queen. And she is the highlight of this week's Know Your Oh Divas interview feature.

Every drag queen must have a name - I had been called Jay a few years back in my drag career, but Mike Gaw told me, "you should have a drag name". And he gave me the name "Jaja". So I started using it. Thank you Mike Gaw.

How did you get started in drag? - I met Cocoy from Red Banana and he pushed me to do drag. He loved the way I lip-synch. And now I am at O Bar.

How did you get started at O Bar? - I was dancing outside O Bar, Malate - just a regular party animal, and crowd went wild when I did my sissy dance *laughs* That started it! Dad Rupert approached me and offered me to do shows regularly at O! Thanks much to Dad Rupert and Dad Mon for believing in me. *smiles*

What do you love most about performing in drag? - What I love the most is showing the artistic side of me. It's an outlet to share with others as well. Moreover, what I so love about doing drag is the PROCESS - looking at myself transforming into a different colorful creature, from pale to hey!

What is your biggest challenge as a drag queen? -  My biggest challenge is how I will do my best in doing performing and not to be compared with anyone else's artistry in my work perimeter.

My biggest challenge is myself - how I will change from one character to another.

What are some biggest misconceptions about drag queens? - That they think these drag queens are cross-dressers even during the day. *laughs* That these drag queens have thin eyebrows and have boobies for real. That these drag queens are all sissy and effeminate.

Who is your biggest celebrity inspiration? - It's actually (Lady) Gaga now, of how she eventually changed the music industry. I call her draGAGA.

My lovely dragmates are my inspiration, too. So I am grateful to be working with them.

Has performing in drag taught you anything about yourself? - Doing drag taught me how to really love what you do, not just because of the money you squeeze out from it but the passion that really is inside you.

Drag taught me how to respect who came in first and not to step on them even though you do better than them. Drag reminds me of the good manners and right conduct I learned when I was younger.

Drag taught me how to value workmates and not to forget your self-worth.

What has been your favorite moment in your drag career? - That was meeting Jessica Sanchez on national television and having a little chitchat with her - and Jessica Soho, too. *smiles*

What is your message to the drag queen hopefuls who want to get started in the art?  - Doing drag isn't an easy task to do. If they are really into doing it with passion then push-through! If not, try hopping into another field. Peace out!

Passion is a real big thing to consider and the master key to be a REAL FIERCE DRAG QUEEN.

And these are the words of the one and only Jaja. From afar she's pretty intense and intimdating but as you can see in this interview, there's a lot more to her than that.

You can typically catch Jaja at O Bar Ortigas on Wednesday and Thursday nights. See you at O!

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