Baatein with Bhenji ft. Rimi Heart

Updated: Feb 10

"I wasn't ill-treated. I have pretty privilege." - Rimi Heart.




1. What does "Drag" mean to you personally?


Drag is an artform of gender and self-expression through the magic of makeup, hair and costuming.


2. When did you start doing drag?


I started doing drag during the pride events of 2016 Bangalore 'Namma' Pride.


3. How did you start doing drag?


I was asked to do it by my friends for the above-mentioned pride event. I decided to give it a try.



4. When was the first time you performed in drag?


I started doing drag during the pride events of 2016 Bangalore 'Namma' Pride.


5. How would you describe your drag style?


My drag persona is WOMAN. She is a femmetastic Goddess of beauty with pipes unmatched. She's the elusive chanteuse of drag.


6. Criticisms can either make you or break you. What were some critics you got when you started?


I never really cared much about external critics. Mostly because I was and am better at every aspect of drag and performance than pretty much anyone who tried to critique me. So, their concerns were and are moot to me. I am my only valid critic, and honestly, she's ruthless enough.


7. "Relevance of drag in India." What do you think?


Drag is and will be relevant regardless of whether it's the past, the present or the distant future. Whether society is patriarchal or matriarchal. Drag will be relevant whether it is inherently political or defies it. It is one of the truest forms of self-expression and that will never go away.


8. What was the initial reaction of your family and friends when you told them about you as a drag performer?


I mean, they are the one who pushed me to do it. I think they enjoy it as much as I do. My drag is beautiful, and a thing of beauty is a joy forever. Cardi B said that.


9. "Drag is political." Do you agree? Present your thoughts on the same.


I do agree. Haven't you read about all these politicians being caught getting down and dirty with them crossdressers?



10. Do you feel drag needs to be inclusive? Why or why not?


Drag by definition is inclusive. But there are several forms of it, and I don't see any problem in showcasing one form or the other from time to time. It doesn't always have to be a mixed bag. I would like to see pageants, balls, raves, halloween contests. It could be a mixed bag too. Really depends on the type event.


11. Do you believe drag culture is compromised?


There is no drag culture in India per se. We are making it as it goes. I wouldn't say it's compromised in its nascent stage. That would be a demoralizing thought. I would rather like to look at where it might go.


12. What are your thoughts on "Drag patronizing"?


Drag Patronizing? Is it about me? Cos I would read a ho if she's missing nails or lashes. I mean, with any craft, there's always a way to learn and grow. If I don't see growth in a drag queen, then why do it?



13. Were you ill treated/abused because you perform in drag? Please share your experience if comfortable.


I wasn't ill-treated. I have pretty privilege.


14. What is your vision through the art of drag?


My vision with drag is that we get treated as the royalty/superstar that we are one day. Drag artists are entertainers of meticulous work ethic and dazzling creativity. They should be revered as such. And I can see that plan already in motion with every vibrant new queen as she shines anew in the scene.


15. A message you'd like to give to young aspiring drag artists.


Here's the T girlies. You are going to look busted when you start. For a good few months to a year. I did, all the other major dolls did, and so will you. But don't let that discourage you. Allow yourself to make mistakes. Only with those missteps, will you familiarize with every contour and highlight of your beautiful visage, and create something out of stardust that one day will sit atop. And when you finally see her, it will all be worth it.

Follow Rimi Heart on Instagram to support her and see her upcoming work at https://www.instagram.com/heartrimi/



About author : Miss Bhenji is an Indian aesthetic drag queen. She's a dancer, actor and a comedian. She's based out of Nagpur and her interview talk show is called Baatein with Bhenji. Baatein with Bhenji was an initiative taken by Miss Bhenji to interview the queer artists of India to give them exposure for people to learn more about them.


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