Kitty Scott Claus
12th May 2022
Photographer & Editor-in-chief: Owen James Vincent
Interview: Sophie Todd
Kitty's Assistant: Ophelia Love
Logo Design: Emily Curtis
She can strut with the best of them and left us all in stitches on the Drag Race stage, but what’s the next thing Kitty Scott-Claus will be getting her claws into?
I’m personally a huge fan of your iconic appearance on Season 3 of Drag Race UK but for those who didn’t watch… how did you find kitty or did she find you?
Do you know what? Kitty is me, I am Kitty, in the words of The Greatest Showman ‘This Is Me’. The reason I started doing drag was that my best friend, Ophelia Love was a drag queen and we would go on nights out and she would get free drinks, she would get attention from boys, she would get VIP and I thought that’s a bit of me, I could do that, just for the free drinks purely. I started drag for attention! It was a cry for help and here we are 5 years later. Kitty is an extension of myself, she’s my artistic expression and I love it!
You only have to look at yourself to see your infectious, larger-than-life personality but how much of Kitty is in Lewis and how much of Lewis is in Kitty? Do you almost view her as your very own alter ego that you get to live as?
Who’s Lewis? [laughs]. I’m joking! [laughs]. I’m pretty much the same in or out of drag, what you see is what you get. I’m a larger-than-life, bubbly personality and I’m just chatty and that’s in or out of drag. If I have a wig on or not it doesn’t really change, it’s not like I get into drag and have a process of becoming the character. The character is me!
For someone finding their very own drag queen, what would you tell them is the most important part of creating your queen?
I would say the most important thing is to be yourself and also to enjoy it because it’s fun at the end of the day. We’re so lucky we can call this a career and the platform that Drag Race has given us. It’s so amazing that you can have a career out of it and even before Drag Race I was working full time like a queen, so it is possible. I think the most important thing is to be yourself and be true to yourself and be authentically yourself. If you see someone doing something that fine but you don’t have to copy, it’s your own expression, that’s what I think is so important, drag is so personal that it should personal on every level.
For any/every queen you can really see how much they grow on Drag Race over the season, how did the journey impact you like a queen?
It gave me more of a clear idea of who I was as a person and as a queen because everything you do gets put under a microscope, you get looked at the way you’ve never been looked at before, and no one ever criticized you like that before and if they have they haven’t said it to your face or they will say it after a few drinks but to have that in real life or in real-time, it makes you reevaluate what’s working for someone it might not work for me and that’s why it’s so important to be authentic to yourself in your own journey with drag. You really do find yourself while doing Drag Race, you think well this is what I am and so I need to celebrate that and be so authentically myself and the loudest, proudest version of myself.
If you were to give one bit of advice for the Season 4 sisters, what would it be?
I’ll give them the same advice as Cheryl Hole gave me. So before I went in to film Season 3, Cheryl said to me treat every single day as if it’s your last as if you know you’re going home because then you won’t give a shit and you’ll just go and be silly, be crazy but I don’t know if you need any encouragement in that but it just allowed me to have the freedom, and just like fuck it, what’s the worst that can happen? It’s hard work, it’s long hours and it’s tough but the payoff is more than rewarding.
If you were to create a challenge for the show what would you want to do?
Ooh! I would love a Rusicial. Also, can I just say I thought Season 3 was going to have a Rusical because if you look at the cast of Season 3 a lot of girls trained in theatre such as me, Ella, Veronica, River, Vanity, Victoria, Anubis, Elekta…so many of us have done musical theatre.
When we realised we didn’t have a Rusical we were all like ‘What? that’s so mad!' So, I would love to see a Rusical but we had a lovely Dragaton didn’t we? [laughs].
You were starring in the show Death Drop and all your other west end appearances since the final, what would be your dream role to play on the west end?
I’ve got a degree in musical theatre. So before I was doing drag I was a musical theatre actor and getting to combine the two is incredible and such an honor. When I did my first bow at Death Drop I felt like I’d done it, this is so weird. It’s not the way I saw it planned out! Like I remember thinking I would go to musical theatre school, get a degree, and then I would get a job in a West End show. When I was at drama school, the teachers would ask me what parts I would like to play and I was never interested in the boys’ parts as I felt like they were so boring. I wanted to be like Glinda from Wicked, Elle Woods from Legally Blonde, or Roxy Heart in Chicago. So, to do this and come on the journey I have done, it’s come true but the way I wanted it with the West End lady. My next part on the West End would be Jane Seymour in SIX!
It’s no secret that you love being the center of attention and are living evidence of main character syndrome. Having always loved and been influenced by theatre?
Yes! Theatre is where I got most of my inspiration. Even look at Drag Race, my entrance look was Legally Blonde. I remember my way of thinking about the runways was I would base it on a show, so my fugly runway was based on the 9 to 5 musical, and my goddess look was based on Hercules, that’s the way I trained and think about things. Also when we were doing Drag Race every runway was a different character, I would like to think that Kitty’s like the Barbie and you can put her in any situation where you would have astronaut Barbie or chief Barbie and it shows that I could do it all!
What’s the difference between Kitty performing as a Queen and Kitty in Death Drop?
In Death Drop we had to be strict with ourselves as it's theatre and we have lines, you’ve got places you need to hit and marks you need to hit for lighting queues and it’s not about you, it’s a big huge operation to get the show on and to keep the show going because of Covid and everything. It’s very military, in terms of I got to stand here, I’ve got to wear this costume and same performance every night to a degree because we are drag queens and we like to have fun.
If you come to a Kitty show, all bets are off! What I love most is talking to the audience, chatting away, and meeting people, I’m just nosey and chatty. So even if I’ve got a 20-minute set, I always think how am I going to do three songs in that as I want to talk as well? It’s just me being chatty!
Something I particularly love about you is your overwhelmingly positive outlook on life. Since the birth of Kitty 4.5 years ago has the world become a different place for you? Do you see the world differently when you’re Kitty too when you’re Lewis?
As I’ve said before I’m the same in and out of drag but from starting doing drag to now. For me drag is an overwhelmingly positive experience, I love doing it, it’s my passion and I have so much fun doing it, it doesn’t feel like a job. It just feels like a bit of fun and I want to keep doing it as long as possible because it’s so fun and I love it.
Ever since I’ve done it full time in drag I think everything’s changed. Before I was doing hospitality jobs and events and every time I was doing it I felt like it was an end day for me because I know something coming. I’m a big believer in faith and the universe and I remember thinking I’m destined to be doing something else than a hospitality shift. I’ve got to stay positive and not think about negative thoughts. So when Drag Race happened it was like this is huge, this is my life-changing forever!