On Point With: Xaddy Addy

The recent winner of a grounds breaking long-form drag competition, Xaddy Addy’s unique take on the artform is much in demand… even as the art form of drag itself is under attack.

Thotyssey: Hey Xaddy, how is March treating you so far?

Xaddy Addy: Hi there! This first week of March has already been a whirlwind as far as performing, but I’m feeling great… and so ready for the warmer weather.

You were just in an interesting looking production at The Tank last night called “Drag Me Into Longform.” What was that about?

It was an epic show. “Drag Me Into Longform” was an incredible month-long collaboration between various drag artists. The mission of the show was to allow us to have a ten minute chunk within a theatrical setting to explore our drag, but also get feedback and support from our fellow artists. My piece for the night was… scary, to say the least! But it was an experience that really allowed me to show how versatile I am as a performer.

Do you generally go for “Scary / Spooky” with your drag looks and numbers?

For a long time, I didn’t! It wasn’t until I got booked for a lot of spooky shows several months back that I had an interest in expanding my looks and my work. I wouldn’t say I go for scary looks or numbers regularly, but I definitely have a lot of ideas going onward that I’d be thrilled to do.

[Photo: Erin Teresa]

Tell us a bit of your origin story if you will! Where are you from, and were art and performing always a thing for you?

I’m from NYC, and have lived here for almost my whole life, mainly in Harlem! Growing up, I was a shy and bullied kid… so I didn’t really aspire to be a performer or be seen. My initial aspirations were to be a lawyer, of all things. I always loved art, fashion, music and dance, but it wasn’t until high school that I started to get out of my shell and immerse myself in the performing arts.

How did Xaddy get born?

Xaddy emerged in the midst of the pandemic lockdown. I had started going to drag shows shortly before and became very interested in the drag king and thing scene. But then I got Covid, things shut down, and I got sick to the point where I could have died.

Luckily, after a long recovery I started to evaluate the life I had lived before Covid. I was very much in a shell, and I resigned to the need of living my life to the fullest once and for all. It just so happened that during the lockdown, so many folks put on virtual shows. So I would attend, and while watching I’d start doing my makeup… then started creating looks and concepts. And eventually Xaddy Addy became born out of my desire to become my best and most authentic self.

[Photo: Jupiter Doll]

Oh wow, what an amazing relief that you recovered from Covid! And, you are also the recent winner of the “Takes the Cake” drag king / thing competition hosted by The Cake Boys, belated congrats!

Thank you! “Takes The Cake” was amazing! I don’t want to brag, but it’s probably the best competition anyone could ever enter. I originally was being pressed to compete in 2021, but I still didn’t feel ready to go out on a big stage. So when the application came this time around, I felt I was ready to showcase who I was a drag performer. And it was an experience I’ll never forget! It was a lot of hard work, but the support I felt from my fellow competitors and the audience was immeasurable. I’m so grateful to have met The Cake Boys, and be a part of the broader legacy that they have created for drag things and kings. I had a blast, and was very much in disbelief when I won! I’m still pinching myself now.

Werk! Gender diversity is definitely becoming more prevalent in drag today, yet much still needs to be done to spread that expressive variance in venues. And yet while all that progress is being made, regressive steps are being taken in parts of the country to minimize all drag. It’s a pretty wild time to be a drag performer, isn’t it?

It is a wild time, and I know it’s a scary time for many as well. When it comes to progress venues can make for being more inclusive to drag artists such as myself, it’s definitely a given. And I think things like “Takes The Cake” and being an ambassador to a larger cause of inclusivity in the scene can help make that happen.

However, the introduction of anti-trans and anti-drag laws all throughout the country is something that’s gonna take so much more action to eradicate. This is a time where community, solidarity, and real time action are needed more than ever. The infringement on our right to live is more and more of a reality each day; it is my lifelong mission to always be an advocate for these issues, and make sure that my drag and queer community are as safe and supported as possible.

In the meantime, representation and supporting local drag goes a long way! One show where we can come and support you is Whoopsie “Wendesdays,” a bi-weekly experience at Purgatory that you co-host with [Unintelligible Screaming]! What’s that showcase like?

Whoopsie “Wendesdays” gives me so much queer trans joy, and we spread that energy and vibe all throughout the space. Our open stage is incredible, and I feel that Unintelligible and I are hosting some of the best queer and trans talent that Brooklyn has to offer! Whoopsie is such a great show because it doesn’t involve the judgement or worries of other open stages; everyone feels welcomed and encouraged when they come to our show, and the family that has been built around this show truly warms my heart. Unintelligible and I call ourselves “Mom and Xad,” and the crowd lives for the dynamic!

“Bussy Bingo” is another Brooklyn event you co-host; this one is every Thursday at Pink Metal, with Miss Bussy. That must be fun! And those bingo addicts do not fuck around, lol!

Oh, it’s so fun. My drag sister Miss Bussy and I have the time of our lives every Thursday night. And we definitely see a competitive edge when it comes to our attendees, because everyone wants to win! But it’s also fun because our game is not the usual bingo! It’s almost like chatting with your two NYC born-and-raised besties while possibly winning a free drink within the game! And, we also host an open stage after the game! So people get a 3-in-1 with our show: lots of Bussy bingo, drag shows from us, and an incredibly inclusive and welcoming open stage.

And this Friday night you’re back in Purgatory as a guest star for “Sylvester” starring Paris Alexander and Julie J, with many others on stage!

I know! I’m so excited to be back at Sylvester! When I first did Sylvester last year, I was soooo nervous. I’ll never forget getting to the venue and coming up to Julie J to say hi. She was just so warm to me, and made me feel validated in being in a show with legends like herself. It feels very full circle to be returning.

We’ll also be seeing you serving “Sex Change” at Purgatory on March 31st, where Brooklyn kings become queens and queens become kings for a special one night only experience!

I’m so excited about this show because I can finally make fun of the forced feminization I felt indoctrinated to as a child. But also it’s such a fun opportunity for all of us in the cast to explore a new persona and serve cunt. My “switch” persona is named Mommy Mistress, and trust me… she bites just as hard as Xaddy!

And this just in: on March 21st, you’ll be part of the tremendous drag cast of 3 Dollar Bill’s “Stand Up NYC,” which will serve all proceeds to the Tennessee ACLU in the wake of their ridiculous “drag ban.”

Have great shows! Lastly: What is your own favorite, go-to drag cosmetic product?

My go to cosmetic for drag is actually two products, because I couldn’t be Xaddy without them: Ben Nye’s Clown White, and the company’s colorless setting powder!

Thank you, Xaddy!

{Photo: Alex Webster]

Check Thotyssey’s calendar for Xaddy Addy’s upcoming appearances, and follow them on Instagram.

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