Back to Bowie for a minute. Yes, I’m aware three other musicians died today (what is going on universe), but I want to say something again about Ziggy Stardust. Or rather someone who played Ziggy Stardust. I guess dresses up is more the appropriate term. For you see, the other day I was privileged to speak with a David Bowie drag performer named LadyBob.
LadyBob ate, drank, and slept Bowie; lived and breathed Bowie. According to him, coming across David Bowie for the first time was when he truly he felt he belonged. We’ve all been there, myself included. I never fit in at school, even among my theatre and artistic peers. The outsider among outsiders. It took me years to come to terms with that. Being okay with being different, on a fundamental and perhaps even cellular level.
For LadyBob, Bowie’s ideas and concepts of being an alien from outer space, a never-before-seen creature, spoke volumes to him not only on a creative level, but also on a personal level. It wasn’t only the hair, the make-up, the image, it was everything else that image stood for: You are unique and that’s fantastic.
Bowie is a cabaret and drag performer’s dream; so many styles, personas and fashion choices, Clearly Starman was the most outrageous of all. People love Bowie because everything he did and said was an art piece and he didn’t give any shits. And it is clear that LadyBob has taken this characteristic of his idol in full force. With Bowie, and with LadyBob, acceptance is key yes, but more so is being true to yourself, expression, and throwing whatever labels society may place on you out the window. Bowie was messing with identity and sexuality eons before genderqueer was a thing. But LadyBob is proud (and willing) to carry the starman’s torch. This funky, flamboyant, free-spirit embodies everything generations loved about The Man From Mars.
Him and I also share something in common: an affinity for the song “Heroes”. For me, there are so many reasons – it’s lyrically simple yet brilliant, it’s poetic, it’s powerful. For LadyBob, it’s the message: you are who you are and you are fantastic. LadyBob, you are fantastic. Keep it up!