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'Drag Race UK is going to be so amazing': RuPaul's Drag Race star Nina West talks ahead of #DXP19 tour coming to Birmingham

By Rebecca Stanley | Birmingham | Theatre & Comedy | Published:

She's the pride of season 11 of RuPaul's Drag Race, and now Nina West is coming to Birmingham.

Nina West's promotional picture for the eleventh season of RuPaul's Drag Race

The 'elevengendary' queen is set to perform at the city's O2 Institute as part of the #DXP19 tour, brought to the town and across the UK by Holy T, Dragged Up and Jinjer.

The performer, the character of 41-year-old Ohio performer Andrew Levitt, will be joined by fellow Drag Race queens Detox, Brooke Lynn Heights, Vanessa Vanjie Mateo, Monique Heart and Morgan McMichaels, as well as Dragula star Meatball.

"I am so excited to be on the #DXP19 tour," Nina told us.

"I think my goal is to serve some classic camp drag and make the audience laugh, sing along, and have some fun.

"I am pretty tight with everyone on the tour, so I am ready for the sisterhood. But I won't lie, between Detox, Vanjie, and Meatball, I know there are some serious shenanigans in store.

"This will only be my second time coming to the UK. I am so excited to make some new friends, see some of the things I have heard or read about, and eat some of the food. Fish and chips, please!"

Nina began performing in drag in 2001 under the watchful eye of drag mother Virginia West.

The #DXP19 tour

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She went on to host the annual Heels of Horror show at the Axis Nightclub in her hometown, as well as competition So You Think You Can Drag?.

In 2008, Nina won the Entertainer of the Year award, with her ensemble for the glittering ceremony inspiring an outfit worn by pop icon Sia at Coachella in 2016.

Last year, the drag artist was recognised by Columbus Business First on their 40 Under 40 list.

Nina was propelled even further into stardom when she was announced to star in the eleventh season of RuPaul's Drag Race alongside the likes of Yvie Oddly, Silky Nutmeg Ganache, A'Keria C. Davenport, and fellow #DXP19 stars Brooke and Vanjie.

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The queen wowed audiences with her comedy chops and quirky fashion sense, as well as her endearing personality that saw her crowned Miss Congeniality of the season.

She may not have taken home the title of America's Next Drag Superstar, but she has since released a children's music album, Drag Is Magic, and a comedy EP, John Goodman.

Nina West on the cover of New York Magazine. Picture from: @ninawest/Instagram

Nina has also recently appeared on the front cover of New York magazine among 37 other queens.

Now she's coming to the UK, and we can expect some lively performances from the effervescent queen.

"I love performing so many different things, from Disney to Adele to Amy Winehouse," Nina told us.

"I enjoy performing any song that shows off my fun sensibilities and makes the audience have a blast too."

But before the show starts, Nina will be psyching herself up to hit the stage with a tried-and-tested method of hers.

"Before the show starts, I usually just try to clear my head and think about the show and what I am there to do," Nina revealed.

Nina West at Columbus Pride. Picture by: @jamiequeenwest/Instagram

"Sometimes, I will sip on a cocktail, pace back and forth, and just try to focus."

It may feel like season 11 has only just wrapped up, with spooky queen Yvie Oddly being crowned, but a brand new UK edition of the hit show is heading to our TV screens.

While the queens set to star in the show have not yet been revealed, RuPaul and judge Michelle Visage have announced they will be heading overseas for RuPaul's Drag Race UK, alongside British stars Graham Norton and Alan Carr.

While drag fans eagerly await more news, Nina will be immersing herself in UK drag in preparation for the new show.

"Drag Race UK is going to be so amazing," the star enthused.

"To see the world's biggest stage for drag come to the UK and have the UK show off their style and art is so exciting.

"I am going to try to emerge myself in as much drag in the UK as I can. I know I will be doing that. Any drag I can catch is a must."

Monet X Change, Nina West and Adore Delano on The View. Picture from: @ninawest/Instagram

The #DXP19 tour comes to Birmingham's O2 Institute on Friday, July 26.

For more information and to buy tickets, click here.

Rebecca Stanley

By Rebecca Stanley
@becci_star

Entertainment journalist for Express & Star and Shropshire Star. Contact me: rebecca.stanley@expressandstar.co.uk

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