Michelle Visage on why she loves Eurovision: ‘It’s probably the campest show on TV after RuPaul’s Drag Race’
Michelle Visage has opened up about her passion for all things Eurovision and her excitement over it being hosted in the UK for the first time since 1998.
As one of the judges on RuPaul’s Drag Race and Ru’s right-hand woman, Visage, 54, is more than qualified to judge what makes for a great show.
Speaking to the Standard, she said: “It’s probably after RuPaul’s Drag Race, the campest show on television. It is so much fun along with the music, the costumes and the insanity.
“When I was young, I knew that Abba came from something called Eurovision, but in America, we didn’t get that. We didn’t know what Eurovision was because we weren’t part of the EU and still aren’t. When I found out Abba was from that it was like a little bit of a mind blow, so then I started digging deeper and then of course Gina G and so many things that we got in the United States have come from Eurovision. It’s really exciting! And of course, where else are you gonna get acts like that and artists like that doing music like that? There’s only one place and that’s Eurovision.”
As an honorary Brit, Visage is one hundred percent behind UK entry Mae Muller too.
She enthused: “Oh, she’s so good and the song is so good! I’m really thrilled and excited to see the performance and everything unfold. You know, I’m always going to pull for the UK, that’s where my heart is. I had a tough time Maneskin year just because he was so hot and being an Italian girl, I was drawn to Italy, but you know, I’m always pulling for the UK and Mae Muller is amazing.”
The RuPaul’s Drag Race judge will be teaming up with former Drag Race UK winner The Vivienne to host “the ultimate” viewing party in London for this year’s Eurovision Grand Final on May 13.
Only 80 lucky people will be able to attend the event, which is in partnership with Barefoot Wine and will be first come, first served via an online link or competitions run by the drink manufacturer’s social channels.
Speaking about her hosting gig, she said: “We’re very, very excited about it, it’s such an exciting event and then, for us to be there doing it together is even the next level exciting for me.
“I’m just looking forward to being together with friends and making new ones. Especially since the fact that we haven’t been able to be together for so long and now we’re able to so for me, it’s more exciting to be back and celebrating with humans in one room.”
Visage won’t have time for a hangover as the very next day, she will be hosting the red carpet coverage at the BAFTA Television Awards with Clara Amfo.
The savvy interviewer isn’t fazed by the possibility of awkward interviewees ala Ashley Graham’s viral encounter with Hugh Grant at this year’s Oscars.
While she said she would have handled the situation differently, Visage praised Graham, who she said “pulled it off like a champ”.
She said: “I have a real British sense of humour so I would have been able to handle that differently and I think if you don’t understand that, it could easily go awry.
“You have to keep in mind that we’re all just human and all just walking the same earth so we don’t know what happens to somebody on any given day and it could be overwhelming and we have to keep in perspective ‘what happened to them? What did they do today?’ You know, maybe something happened to them. And be patient, be kind and at the end of the day we need to laugh and laugh it off and not get hurt by it.”