five questions: Drag and Introversion with Andro Gin
One of the most exciting things we’ve learned since launching queeret is that queer introverts — We. Are. Everywhere. We show up in the world in so many different ways and variations.
We’re particularly giddy and grateful for the latest interview — this time, with Miami-based Drag King, comedienne, and Cuban-American, Andro Gin.
Learn more about the intersection of drag and introversion, visions of what drag geared toward introverts could look like, and the most significant lesson Andro Gin learned from doing drag.
Thank you again, Andro Gin! Your creativity, work, and showing up proudly as an introvert is such a gift. Now, for the interview…
1. You're both an introvert and Drag King. How does your introverted nature impact your drag? How does drag impact you as an introvert?
I’m at my most zen when I’m getting ready for a gig. That alone time pampering, painting my mug, and choosing an outfit is probably one of my favorite things about Drag. I feel that the introspection that introverts spend a little more time doing has allowed me to be more detail-oriented when it comes to how I paint.
Drag has really challenged me to be more social and I’m thankful for that because before drag I would never walk up to a group of strangers to introduce myself, and now I feel like I can do that if the event called for that type of interaction.
2. If you created a version of drag that caters to introverts, what comes to mind? What do you envision?
I think anything is possible. I’m always, always, in the mood for a sit down evening theater experience that’s chill with wine (or whatever non-alcoholic juice fits) and cheese, but it’s sometimes difficult finding venues that would support that type of show. But drag doesn’t always have to be about performance because I could easily see people showing up in looks for a video game or DND night that’s hosted by a drag artist.
Or even brunch on sundays but instead of being at a super busy restaurant with mimosas and backflips (though those are always appreciated too, trust!) a coffee lounge brunch with a more creative-leaning drag show I see too. Because often as an introvert it’s not that we don’t want to attend shows, it’s just the atmosphere can sometimes be draining. I speak to a lot of introverts that truly wish they could go out more without risking their mental health/stamina.
So I definitely feel like with the amount of introverted drag artists that exist, we could all put our brains together to figure out something that is more accessible to those that would prefer an alternative to a traditional drag show.
3. Performing and traveling from city to city must drain your energy at times. How do you carve out space for yourself between performances?
I’m a bit pickier about the gigs I accept and I make sure not to pack my schedule too heavy. A lot of people don’t have the luxury to do that, so I’m lucky in that regard and recognize my privilege there. I just make sure to properly take care of myself so I’m not wasting amazing opportunities I’ve been given.
During traveling however, I try to take out the time to really enjoy the city I’m in. That can’t always happen, naturally, but when I’m able to explore the city with locals and have them show me around to historical landmarks or just general queer history it helps me decompress because I’m not really focused on performing or being social -- I’m just the observer at that point. Which is fun. Lol at least for me!
4. What's one significant lesson you learned through drag that you couldn't have learned from any other of life?
The social aspect for sure. When I’m traveling there’s a lot of people there wanting to see me and I do my best to make sure I’m meeting/exceeding expectations because there’s nothing like meeting someone you’ve watched for a while and they were rude or dismissive of you. I do my best to make conversation with fans and support the other local performers. At that point it’s just etiquette.
5. For other queer introverts out there - - what's one or two self-care practices you find particularly rejuvenating?
Going to a cafe with headphones in and writing, or drawing. Just allowing my brain to separate from life for just a moment.
Loving myself -- As cliche as it is. Forgiving my mistakes, loving the person I am, championing my own successes, etc keeps me center. Introverts spend a lot of time in introspection and sometimes that can turn into replaying over and over things you did wrong or things you don’t like. So in order to have introspective moments actually be surrounded by peace for me, I practice self-love first.