Kitty Scott-Claus in Celebrity Masterchef. (BBC)
Drag Race UK sensation turned Celebrity MasterChef hopeful Kitty Scott-Claus thinks bigots attacking drag shows need to “have a day off”.
Since finishing as a runner-up on season three, Kitty Scott-Claus has been booked and busy. She’s led her first-ever West End show – the ‘Dragatha Christie’ sensation Death Drop, and is now returning to screens as a contestant on Celebrity MasterChef.
“When we got the call, I was like: ‘Oh, God, I didn’t see this for myself but we’re gonna give it a good old go,’” Kitty tells PinkNews.
“I want to be the best that I can be. I don’t want to do anything half-assed, I want to always prove people wrong. And I feel like I did that on Drag Race.
“People thought I was just going to be loud and a bit annoying. I proved people wrong and I proved I am versatile as a performer. So going into Masterchef I remember just thinking first of all, enjoy myself and have fun doing it.”
Kitty’s appearance on Celebrity Masterchef – which comes after Baga Chipz competed on the show in 2020 – proves how drag has exploded into the mainstream thanks to RuPaul’s Drag Race.
But while many are embracing the art form, recent months have seen it come under increasing attack from conservatives and the far-right.
Protests against family-friendly drag queen story hour events have spread from the US to the UK, with bigots claiming drag performers reading books to children is somehow insidious. In one notable case, homophobes threatened to “arrest” and kidnap a queen.
Kitty believes “the more representation the better” when it comes to sharing drag culture with children. She says it would have deeply impacted her to see something like a drag queen story hour when she was a child.
Are you joking? They’re there to read a story to a child.
“On a personal level I think if I was a child nowadays and I saw a drag queen, the more representation the better because it de-stigmatises and it becomes normalised.
“At the end of the day, drag queens are just like everyone else. We are here to entertain and put on a performance.
“It breaks my heart to see videos on Twitter like the one I saw the other day of someone trying to do a public arrest of a drag queen.”
Kitty adds: “Are you joking? They’re there to read a story to a child. Leave off!
“Think of the wider picture with everything else that’s going on in the world at the moment and you’re having a go at a man in a wig.”
“Drag is for everyone and should be celebrated by everyone. What I find funny is that no one has an issue when it’s a man in a wig at a pantomime – no one raises an eyebrow. It’s so stupid to me that people get so wound up about it. Have a day off!”
For Kitty, drag has been life-changing. She says appearing on Drag Race has been “incredible for my career and for me as a person”.
“People say that all the time and it’s so cliche but Drag Race and RuPaul have changed my life completely and I’m so grateful for it,” she adds.
“When you think about what Ru has done and how far the world has come because of her, it’s an honour to be on her show. And carrying on the legacy.”
After Celebrity MasterChef, Kitty’s plans involve a huge Christmas tour with fellow season three queen Ella Vaday – Kitty & Ella’s Christmas Cracker – and the official Drag Race UK season three tour.
Ultimately, she has her sights set on the stage.
“I was always like: ‘I want to be Glinda in Wicked,’” Kitty says.
I think that’s pushing it a bit but you know what, there’s so many others. I’d love to be Paulette in Legally Blonde. I’d love to be in Chicago.”
What’s sure is that Kitty has no intention of slowing down.
Kitty Scott-Claus can be seen in the new season of Celebrity Masterchef on BBC One, kicking off on Wednesday (10 August),