This week we interviewed one of Finlands top drag artists, Linnea von Kattendam. See Linnea’s BTA artist profile HERE
Please introduce yourself
I am award winning drag show artist, producer and drama instructor coming from North-Karelia and living in Helsinki. I’m ambitious project man who is always planning a new project to start. I’ve done shows all over Finland past seven years and oh boy, that’s only a start! My dream is to get my own variety show on a stage of big theater. I enjoy active city life but need my moments in the peace of the countryside.
How did you get interested in performing?
I studied visual arts in Joensuu and noticed that my true passion is in performing arts. I had background with theater just a bit (was acting in a summer theater when I was only 14 years old). I started to create characters and offering them to different local events. First characters was Santa Claus, a news anchor, and a wizard. In those times, I was only 17 years old. In those times, there was a very popular drag show in Joensuu. I got a chance to go and take gig photos of that show and then it happened: I found my variety.
Can you tell us little about your creative process?
I trust on intuition and improvisation. Of course, shows needs to be planned well and rehearsed properly. Best ideas come always when you don’t have to push. Good ideas come from real life (my life is one big sitcom). When I start to make new show numbers I sit down with my sound engineer by listening songs we have found. Most of them are only for inspiration but I now when the right song comes. When the show number moves me, it moves the audience.
Any tips for aspiring drag-artists?
Don’t listen too much to others. Hear only the good tips. Listen to yourself. Drag is to be proud of yourself. It’s ability to laugh at yourself. You can be good and professional in your style. There are not any molds for that. Drag is a technique, attitude, and way of performing. Practice, practice, practice and go see the shows and most of all; show your heart. Then the audience will love you.
You have won a number of prizes for your drag-art. Did that have a big effect on your career?
Those prizes have been the Big Bang! When I attended my first competition I was only 19 years. And a few months later I was performing in Ministry of the environment and so on. That was a big start for a young man. Three prizes in a one year made credibility and publicity but that was only the start. I’ve earned my place as a front line drag show artist by gig to gig.
If you could choose, which artist would you like to see live? Dead or alive.
If I could choose anyone it would be Leslie Nielsen. He’s not with us anymore but he was the king of crazy situation comedies. Maybe when I’m older I need to make reversions of Naked Gun –movies.
Tell us about your regular hang out? Have you ever had a burlesque show there?
Sometimes I go to the gym or running outside. Sometimes just watching Netflix and resting. I love to see gigs and theater plays. I’ve seen lots of burlesque shows in different kinds of events and in Helsinki Burlesque Festival. Drag show and burlesque are good friends.
Future projects we should know about?
I’m going to have that big theater show and my own comedy show on television in the future. Just wait. (Sponsors, I’m waiting for your support!). Meanwhile, you can order my show for your event. Let me entertain you!
Thanks for the interview Linnea!