Born in Birmingham, Alabama, Elle Taylor lived in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois for a short time before finally making her way down to paradise — Key West — in July of 2009. Just two years later Taylor joined the cast of characters at Club Aqua, where she’s been a mainstay ever since.
Taylor’s prodigious talent is obvious to anyone who’s seen her perform. But what really sticks with her audiences is this queen’s out-of-the-box creativity. Elle often leaves crowds in awe, asking: “What was that? No. really, what was that?!” But the bigger questions more important, wondering: “What is drag, exactly? And what can it be?”
Ellle’s husband of four years, Brian, is just as sweet as she is talented. Together, they make the perfect couple (don’t be jealous, haters!), driving all over the country together hitting the pageant circuit.
Brian was gracious enough to let me ride shotgun with Elle just long enough for this exclusive Hotspots interview.
What was the first drag show you saw?
The first-ever drag show I actually went to — as just a spectator — was at The Yacht Club in Birmingham, Alabama during Central Alabama Pride.
When did you decide you wanted to do drag?
I started doing drag when I was 15, without anyone knowing.
When did you realize it would be a profession?
Over the years, I performed in many amazing places, but it wasn’t until I moved to Key West that I found out this could be my profession — a career where I work seven nights a week!
Who is your drag mother?
My drag mother is Trinity Taylor.
Aside from your drag mother, who’s your favorite queen and why?
Besides Tiffany, I would have to say my favorite drag queen is Morgan McMichaels because I always know I’m going to have fun when I work with her.
What’s your favorite number to perform and why?
Any of my aerial-silk [acrobatic] performances. I love being different, evoking emotion, and bringing smiles to faces in the audience.
What’s the best thing that’s happened to you in drag?
This will probably come as a surprise to no one, but the biggest thing that’s happened to me in my drag career was getting the role of Donatella Versace in this past season of American Crime Story.
What sets you apart from other queens?
I like to be different: from doing aerial silks, to swallowing swords, to eating and breathing fire. I want to show that there’s more to drag than just standing on stage lip-synching. It’s an art form and a platform for you to be as creative as you want. I encourage everyone to be as creative as they can.
What does the future hold?
No one truly knows what the future holds. But for me, I hope it includes winning a few national titles, leaving an everlasting impression on our community, and continuing to do films.
So, keep a close eye on both your TV and the movie screen because you never know where I might show up — or who I’m going to be!
Follow Elle Taylor on Twitter @AquaElle89.