Skrellex is a musically trained, Norwegian Drag queen who is known to the Norwegian audience as the contestant of All Together Now: Norge, Drag mentor on Drag Me Out and on of the stars of the show Drags.
Hello Skrellex, can you tell us a bit about your musical beginnings, when did you first start singing and which performers were your role-models growing up?
I’ve been singing and dancing since I was young doing musicals so I’m musically trained. I went to Bårdar Akademiet in Oslo. I’ve always been singing since the age of 11. I didn’t really have any role models I always knew that I want to be on stage and I always liked the show factor of it not only singing or dancing but the whole package of it.
What made you decide to take part at Melodi Grand Prix?
It’s been dream of mine since 1998 when I saw Dana International win I thought that this is what I want to do in my life. I watched it every year since and also I’ve been travelling around for the live shows Vienna, Stockholm, Denmark, Lisbon, so you can say that I’m a huge Eurovision fan.
Can you tell us a bit about “Love again” and what does it mean for you?
It’s not about the basic love which maybe first comes to mind. It’s a song about love for the dance floor especially for the queer community we just wanted to make song which is love for the disco and it’s a happy, party disco song and the love we have for it.
What can we expect from your performance? Can you share with us any details of it?
No, it needs to be surprise basically. I have four dancers with me on stage, it will be something pretty except of me that you can look at. It’s a disco theme which will be performed.
Together with Henrik Mortensen you launched a podcast Tralten Går (The Troll goes), how did you two came up with the idea and what’s the plan for future?
Yeah we have a podcast. Everybody is doing a podcast now so we were like why aren’t we having a podcast which is about all queer guys speaking the truth about life itself. So that’s just the plan – to keep it going.
Last year a show Drags aired on TV 2 which showcased Norwegian drag culture and life of the queens including you, how was the experience and will there be another season of the show?
It was a documentary series, I was very skeptical at first I didn’t think my life is exciting enough to follow around for six months, but the experience itself with the crew and everything was amazing. I was so proud of the way series came out. Unfortunately TV 2 put it on their sister channel and they didn’t give it any media exposure it was hidden away from the viewers which was quite disappointing as the feedback from the people who watched it was great. In the end my overall experience with the program was amazing.
In addition to that you were also a drag mentor on Drag Me Out: Norge, show which gave Norwegian male celebrities a chance to try out being a drag queen. How was that experience?
It got a lot of backlash as it was a lot of white cis male cis who were made over to be drag queens and a lot of people misunderstood that because they thought it was making a mockery out of the drag art. But if they watched it, they could’ve seen that it was really nice to enlighten them about queer history about drag culture and how it is to be growing up queer in Norway. It was really emotional and they opened up themselves and I think everybody left the show knowing more and feeling a bit more emphatic. Unfortunately the channel cut out many of their Norwegian production and unfortunately there won’t be second season of Drag me Out, it goes the same for Drags and unfortunately there is no more drag coming on TV.
In 2019 you took part in the Norwegian edition of the show All Together Now where in the first round you got 99/100 votes. How did it feel performing on the stage?
So, last time I actually performed live before MGP, it was at All Together Now where there were 100 judges sitting at the wall and you go in front of them I remember me going there at 9 am and they are actually singers and entertainers themselves and I almost shit my pants and in the end 99 out of 100 stood up which was obviously a great experience. The second one not so much as the producer made me sing the song which I really didn’t want to sing and obviously wasn’t as good as the song I performed the first time, because that was basically my final song. TV makes you do things which you go along with and after that you are like I probably shouldn’t have done that. But we got drag on the TV screen and that was an amazing experience.
In 2008 you won the title “Mr. Gay Norway” and in 2010 you released “Be Proud” which was “Mr. Gay Europe’s” anthem how was that experience?
Yes it got me a chance to travel around with the song and that was the last time I released a single as my boy self, Kai Thomas. I was young and hopeful then and Kai Thomas retired as an artist a long time ago.
Do you watch Eurovision regularly, what is your favourite song from the contest?
As I earlier mentioned I watch Eurovision every year if I don’t travel around to watch the finals I watch it on big screen. I love Ruslana “Wild Dances”, Charlote Perelli “Hero”, Dana International “Diva” there are just so many and I just love the music.
What are your plans after Melodi Grand Prix 2023?
Doing some more TV stuff and travelling around doing my own produced show, so that’s what I’m basically gonna do travel around spreading my joy.
Thank you so much for your time Skrellex. We wish you the best of luck at Melodi Grand Prix. Do you want to share something else or you maybe have a message for readers of escbubble?
Just remember that the artists are people too. I know that Eurovision fans are brutal. Just remember that we are on the internet and just spread love not everybody is going to like the same thing. If you don’t have anything good to say then don’t say anything at all.
You can listen to “Love Again” below
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