Columnists :: Fame with Bebe Sweetbriar

Nina Flowers :: Drag’s non-stop superstar

by BeBe Sweetbriar
Wednesday Aug 31, 2011

Guess who’s coming to dinner? The definite crowd favorite and winner of Miss Congeniality on the first season of "RuPaul’s Drag Race," Nina Flowers, finally makes her debut performance in San Francisco. The promoter and hostess, Isa Manzanita, of the ’little drag show that could’ D’Lysh at one of San Francisco’s oldest gay establishments, Deco Lounge, shows the bigger shows that she can not only attract top local drag talent, but also bring in the big guns like the 2009 "Drag Race" runner-up. Since appearing on the inaugural season of LOGO’s popular drag reality series, Flowers, the former Miss Puerto Rico Continental and Miss City Lights Continental, has been non-stop with performances and DJ gigs across the country.

Along with constant traveling every week to club and Pride stages in city after city, Nina somehow manages to maintain a DJ residency at Track’s, Denver’s largest gay nightclub. With a dance single release earlier in 2011 called "I’m Feelin’ Flowers", the extraordinary make-up artist continues to work on her recording career after her first single "Loca" made it to #15 on Billboard’s Top Dance Club Play chart in early 2010 with remixes by notable remixers Joe Gauthreaux and the legendary Manny Lehman. Though it wasn’t easy, I caught up with Flowers while in for a breather at her Denver home to talk about her experience on "RuPaul’s Drag Race," her life after appearing on the reality show, her future in music, and what took her so long to get to San Francisco.

A busy one

BeBe: Well, darlin’, you have been a busy one.

Nina Flowers: (laughing) It’s been wonderful. You’ve got to take every opportunity that comes your way, right?

BeBe: You know that! We can’t let those squander away.

Nina Flowers: Let’s see I was in Boston a couple of weeks ago, and after Boston... here was I after Boston? My schedule has been so crazy. It’s hard to keep track. Oh, then I was in Detroit, and then last week I was in Miami.

BeBe: Oh, that sounds wonderful!

Nina Flowers: I got to admit, the traveling can be exhausting as a whole getting on and off planes, but once you are at the location and you are performing, it makes all so worth it. You are surrounded by people who have been impacted by your work, and it is awesome!

BeBe: It is kind of amazing to look back and see that it has been almost three years since you were on Season One of "RuPaul’s Drag Race" in February of 2009. Girl, saying that seems like it’s been forever. And saying that, the show has done phenomenal with its growth amongst the viewing public and exposing the world to the art that is drag. How amazing was it for you to be a part of such the groundbreaking first season of "Drag Race?"

Nina Flowers: It’s a combination of different emotions. It was overwhelming. It was exciting. It was very stressful at the same time. Being that we were on Season One, we really didn’t have any idea what we were facing and the competition was about. We knew they were going to pick a winner as America’s Next Drag Superstar, but as far as the chemistry of the show, none of us really knew what the show was about or how to prepare for it. That’s a great advantage that the new kids have that have been on past seasons have. They already know what the show is about and how to prepare for it. But Season One was so exciting. So many people auditioned and we were the chosen nine (contestants). To be a part of such an amazing experience for the first time, it was like wow! Also working with RuPaul... she is such an icon. She opened doors for everybody in the drag community.

Story continues on the following page.

Watch the video of Nina Flowers performing "I’m Feelin Flowers":


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