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Tricity Vogue On ... Being Blue in Edinburgh

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The Blue Lady Sings Back marks Tricity Vogue's second turn at the Edinburgh festival. After last year's successful debut, Vogue brings back her out of the ordinary cabaret-style show. Here Vogue talks about her transformation in to the Blue Lady.

It takes me about an hour to get into make-up and costume to transform into the Blue Lady, my cabaret alter-ego in The Blue Lady Sings Back. This year will be my third blue year at the Fringe, and it’s starting to feel ordinary to stroll along the Royal Mile having my photo taken by tourists (they always promise to come and see the show, and sometimes even do). Last year, a dour Scotswoman muttered as I walked past, “Any other month of the year you’d be shot.”

Other responses have been more positive. One of my favourite moments was when a bright red man spotted me from the other side of Cowgate. We ran towards each other in slow-motion while passers-by snapped photos. I don’t speak while out in costume (mainly to save my singing voice), so some people assume I’m a drag queen. My favourite comment: “You’re gorgeous, but you’re freaking me out. Are you a man or a woman?”

Things I can’t do blued up: Blow my nose. Kiss people (unless they don’t mind blue cheeks). Eat with my hands (the gloves don’t look pretty with food stains on the fingers). Go to the loo in less than half an hour (taking that lot off is a production number in itself). Most frequently asked questions: “How long does it take to get it all off?” and “Isn’t it bad for your skin?” What takes an hour to put on washes down the sink in two minutes. If there’s no sink, then ten minutes and about five wet-wipes. As for the second question, probably no worse than any other make-up. Probably.

Last year a busker shouted after me in the Grassmarket: “It’s not enough to be a musician these days, you gotta have a gimmick”. Another guy said to me after a gig: “You’ve got a lovely voice. You don’t have to paint yourself blue, we’d come and see you anyway.” They both missed the point. My show wouldn’t be the show it is if I wasn’t blue. And it’s way too much graft for a gimmick. Is it worth it? Surely any labour of love always is.

The Blue Lady Sings Back is on at theSpaces on North Bridge at 18.05 from 5-27 August (excl 7, 14, 21).


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