Sink the Pink are an international drag collective that are huge on the nightlife scene, starting the Mighty Hoopla festival last year with headliners such as Charlotte Church and a first year audience of over 10,000, and hosting the fabulous Colour Ball at Brixton Academy at this year’s Pride. They were also part of BBC Three’s Queer Britain. They’re celebrating their ten year anniversary this year, and will be ending the year with their debut theatre residency at the Pleasance where they will be performing the scary and scandalous How To Catch A Krampus at the Pleasance Theatre for a 6 week Christmas run from 13th November. Their most ambitious project to date, this debut theatre residency closes a year’s worth of 10th birthday milestones including a headline sold out Brixton Academy show for Pride in July.
Glyn Fussell has been the driving force behind the company, fighting the corner for LGBT+ club nights and safe spaces following the closure of high-profile LGBT+ nightclubs across London. Time Out recently named him as one of their ’50 Londoners who make the city awesome’ along with figures such as Sadiq Khan, Idris Elba and Yottam Ottolenghi. Glyn Fussell, co-founder of Sink The Pink says “We’re thrilled to be bringing this show to a theatre as it’s always been a dream of Sink The Pink’s. This production will be unlike anything we’ve done before. Following reactions to early workshops of the show, producers of have arranged for first aiders to be present at every performance, should audience members become unwell. Hang onto your wigs!”
The show will be pretty spectacular, combining drag, Victorian London and classic British horror. It’s based on the myth of the Krampus (a horned eastern European Christmas beast with the head of a goat), and a part-time spirit medium. It’s been written and directed by Ginger Johnson, whose credits include Sink The Pink’s previous adventures Down the Rabbit Hole and The Queens Head at Selfridges.
Based on Victorian melodrama and the myth of the Krampus (a horned eastern European Christmas beast with the head of a goat and long hideous claws, of course), the story follows the scandalous exploits of a part-time spirit medium/full-time con-artist. Her shadowy life takes an even darker turn when her made-up magic suddenly starts to get results. When faced with certain death and growing suspicion from everyone around her, can she catch the Krampus and save her own skin in the process?
Inspired by London’s bawdy and dangerous theatrical past and a love of classic British Horror – think Sweeney Todd meets the Wicker Man – How To Catch A Krampus is a Christmas story that’s strictly for grown-ups, promising a truly terrifying night at the theatre. Written and directed by Ginger Johnson, whose credits include Sink The Pink’s previous adventures Down the Rabbit Hole and The Queens Head at Selfridges, expect something altogether more shocking with How To Catch A Krampus. Starring a host of Sink The Pink faces, the cast also includes Lavinia Co-Op, a 67-year-old drag legend of famed radical drag troupe BLOOLIPS. The show will feature a specially commissioned, spine-chilling score, performed live each night by musical director Sarah Bodalbhai and sound designer Alicia Turner, as well as ‘added deception’ from award winning magician Tom Cassani.
As always with Sink the Pink “everyone is welcome and everyone is celebrated” – prepare to be spooked this Christmas…
YASS Magazine met Glyn Fussell, the co-founder of Sink The Pink and here is the exclusive interview!
How did the journey of Sink the Pink begin?
Ten whole years ago to a room of about 25 people, all friends. Myself and Amy were just single minded about it working and have never stopped….And here we are!
Who are the genius minds behind this successful project?
The show has been written and directed by Ginger Johnson, who also stars in it! She has been with STP for about 5 years! One of the best people I know, talented, gorgeous, kind and LUNATIC!!!!
How do you feel that you have left your mark in the London gay club scene and how has the London gay scene evolved since you started being a part of it?
Wow, I HONESTLY only ever think about think about things like that when asked questions!! I am not a very nostalgic person so never looking back BUT I am very thankful to still be going so strong. I think we have given space to a lot of freedom and I am very grateful for that. Also a LOT more wigs now…..I swear had we known the phoenix like rising of the age of the queen I would have got some shares in a wig company way back then.
Did you expect to be so popular and, amongst all, trendsetters?
HELL NO!! For a long time we wee just living our biggest lives, there was a ,moment we started getting all this press, then fashion stuff and we were just howling!!! Sink The Pinks life has been one big bowl of psychedelic soup! Just in a nicer bowl now eh!
What makes your parties different than the others famous gay parties in London? What is the secret behind your success?
SOUL and the people, we are the morello cherry on the cake with what we out on stage, the success is the people that are our family, they have kept STP going and will continue to do so with the relentless loyalty for a queer ol’ time!
London venue XXL has sparked controversy by turning away anyone in women clothing. What is your opinion on that?
What a total load of SHIT! It was effeminate guys actually, Casebook internalised homophobia at work here. I have never been because I am a screamer and I worry my heels and lacefront may offend someone heaven forbid! I mean life is tough enough but to turn inwards on your scene….DO ONE…And learn to spell please!
What has been the most memorable moment so far?
Selling Out Brixton Academy was a moment BUT best moment moment? I think the street party this year to mark out 10 years……new faces, old faces, MESSY faces! Was the best!
What does it mean to be queer in Britain?
Well being Queer in London compared to being Queer in remote Britain is different. W often think we are the world here but it is a bubble, UK can still be tough. I think it’s about community and that can exist online too. About education, understanding and compassion. Queer is the way I live and think and is power!
How do you feel with the fact that you were named by Time Out recently one of their ’50 Londoners who make the city awesome’ along with figures such as Sadiq Khan, Idris Elba and Yottam Ottolenghi?
I mean WTF!!!!! That is serious SHITS and GIGS! I dunno, I obviously gave someone good head at that magazine years ago! Hahahahaha.
Tell me about the show “How To Catch A Krampus”. What shall we expect?
It’s a genius show! It’s a spooky, X rated, hilarious, Christmas Drag show, There’s magic, pop bangers and a LIVE musical score. It’s on for 6 weeks at the Pleasance and the last two years have sold out….You have been warned
How long did it take you to make this dream come true?
Myself and Ginger have discussed a theatre for sometime but I just found it, Ginger has worked relentlessly conceiving and creating this show……well since the beginning off the year! It has heart and is VERY Sink The Pink
Are you thrilled to be bringing this show to such a prestigious theatre?
It’s a DREAM, the theatre is so SPECIAL too.
Who will participate in the new show?
Ginger starts and we have the legendary Lavinia Co-Op, Our fabulous Maxi More is back as is supertstars Mairi Houston and Mahatma Khandi. plus we have a new wonder boy David Cummings. Choreography is by the wonderful Chester Hayes who we have worked with for yonks.
What message would you like to send to all your YASS fans?
It may be cold outside but out on a shoulder padded frock and come see some Christmas terror babes, I am giving hand jobs on seat 28, row 9!