All About Nina Flowers

kbs_94321LOCA! This queen may have looked fierce every time she stepped out onto the runway but as we soon discovered, she has a heart of gold. The only queen from Season 1 not to have been in the bottom two lip syncing for her life and the first to ever enjoy a legendary tic-tac lunch with Mama Ru (in my eyes, the true winner of the first season of the best show in the world). Prepare yourself for the fabulousness that is Miss Nina Flowers!

Nina Flowers provided us with so many incredible moments in Season 1 – from nailing the carwash photoshoot and winning the very first challenge, to vogueing it out on the runway and (rightfully) winning Miss Congeniality later on in the season. Aside from being an absolute sweetheart that the other queens could only ever say good things about, Nina’s sense of humour was top notch. Instead of crumbling when things went a little wonky, Nina knew how to laugh at herself. For example, during the teleprompter challenge, Nina ever so sweetly read out “This is your name, good night”… instantly cracking up as she realised what she had said. Another stellar example of her vibrant sense of humour was during the mini challenge with the female fighters in the makeover episode. After straddling the punchbag and showing it who was boss, doing a move that they called the “ground and pound”, Nina shouted “Don’t talk back to my face bitch!” at the punchbag. I’m in stitches every time I see that scene!

kbs_9596-x3-427x640During the MAC Viva Glam episode, Nina revealed that recording the message would be a challenge as she thinks in Spanish and sometimes doesn’t know how to translate some words. In my opinion, she had nothing to worry about – she looked fierce and got the message across perfectly. What I also thought was really lovely and showed off her beautiful character, was that as she left the set she thanked the two models (later to be known as the Pit Crew), which the other queens did not. In the voiceover, as she pummelled the runway in her iconic feathered cuffs, she said “If I like what I see, it doesn’t matter what anybody else has to say… because I feel good about myself ”. This should be the mantra in everyone’s life!

One of my favourite episodes was the Absolut Vodka one where Nina transformed herself into Miss Mango. Having to prepare three looks that week (swimsuit, executive realness and an eleganza evening gown), Ru asked Nina during the walkthrough who she’d be drawing inspiration from for her executive realness look. “I’m basing the executive woman in the image of my mom… She was not only my mom, she was my best friend. She always encouraged me to go for the things I wanted in life”.

nina-flowers2Nina may have dedicated herself to the art of female impersonation for over 20 years, but she is also an incredibly talented DJ. You can tell Nina has rhythm flowing through her veins after she nailed the choreography for RuPaul’s music video, Cover Girl. During the iconic lunch with Ru, she told Nina “You’re a legendary queen and I cannot tell you how happy I am to have you here”.

I’m overjoyed to reveal that I had the pleasure and privilege to interview Miss Nina… something I feel deeply honoured to have done. Read on for her fabulous answers!

Chloe: What made you audition for RuPaul’s Drag Race?
Nina: I had recently moved to Denver, Colorado, and I was still looking for work, so it was an opportunity considering my schedule was flexible. A friend of mine from Puerto Rico told me about an online competition for Drag Queens to appear on a reality TV show. Drag performers on TV – never heard of it, so I was happy to fill out a profile.

Chloe: If you were to be cast in Season 9, who would you play in Snatch Game and why?Nina: Cyndi Lauper, she has always been one of my biggest inspirations. In fact, she was my #1 choice for All Stars, but at the very last minute I changed everything. I really thought it would be interesting to bring some of my Latin culture into the show, plus I wanted to challenge myself, so chose La Lupe.

f32e0d21e2bd2a6a73ced1785fb8706bChloe: Who or what inspires Nina’s incredible style?
Nina: I’m a child of the 80s. While my name was inspired by one of my all time favourite punk rocker artists, Nina Hagen, she has also inspired many of my looks. I’m also inspired by artists such as Boy George, Cyndi Lauper and Annie Lennox, to name a few.

Chloe: What’s your favourite song at the moment?
Nina: I’m very particular about my music…kind of like my drag. I don’t listen to radio that much. I like stuff that is very progressive and raw. My favourite at the moment is Isaac Escalante & Xavier Santos feat Alan T – Like A Man (Original Mix).  It’s super hot!!

Chloe: If you were to get stuck in a lift (elevator), which celebrity would you want to be in there with (past or present) and why?
Nina: In a situation like that I would want to be stranded with someone incredibly funny so that they would make me forget I’m stuck in an elevator. I would love to go through that with the mother of punk rock, and as I mentioned previously my #1 of all times, Nina Hagen. She is hysterical and the bitch can sing! So I’m sure she’d be making jokes and singing in that elevator…lol

Chloe: If you could have any magical power, what would it be and why?
Nina: Make everyone smile. Things are so different when people smile at you. A smile makes everything feel right, makes everyone feel like they belong. A smile is so powerful – it can wash away all your insecurities. Smiling is priceless.

i8fbqyeChloe: Have you visited the UK before and if so, what’s your favourite thing about it?
Nina: Yes, I visited about two years ago. I loved it – the people, the architecture, the culture… everything. I had the pleasure of performing at West 5 Bar, in London; The Village Inn in Birmingham, and Cheerz in Aberdeen. Now I look forward to visiting again, but this time for my music.

I just want to say a huge thank you to Nina for taking the time out of her busy schedule to answer my questions – it will forever be appreciated. I hope to see you perform and/or DJ one day, whether that be here in London or over in the U.S. Stay fiercely fabulous!

Check out Nina’s off the chart soundcloud at www.soundcloud.com/nina-flowers and her incredible website. Also be sure to follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, too!

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Everything changes

I don’t know if others find the same thing where they live, but people seem to be a lot happier when the sun’s out… especially in London! Maybe because we don’t get to see it very often and we’ve just had winter (and very little snow), but wandering around a sunny capital during your lunch break is a glorious experience…

Designed by myself

Designed by myself

Mixtape masterpiece

#279: You make a new friend. Make them a mixtape (or playlist, for the younger folks) that tells them who you are through song.

Hmm… a tricky one! I don’t know whether there are songs that could sum up or narrate my life – and I’m not saying it to insinuate that my life is completely different from every other persons on the planet, but purely that I’ve never thought of songs in that way. So instead, I’m going to examine my (current) favourite songs, to see if there is any relevance…

Pentatonix – La La Latch. The ‘La La La’ parts of the song of the song refer to families future responses to upcoming (exciting) decisions and the ‘Latch’ parts refer to a new interest in my life.

Pentatonix – Rather Be (cover). Again, referring to a new interest.

Sigma ft. Paloma Faith – Changing. Referring to a part of my life that I hope is going to continue to change over the next 6-12 months… exciting times!

Meghan Trainor – All About That Bass. I believe that the use of PhotoShop to manipulate models images for glossy mags/billboards etc, should stop as it’s damaging to tonnes of teens around the world. Fair enough, I’m only a size 8-10 but women should be portrayed as healthy weights and as Megan rightly references… no plastic, stick thin barbie dolls!

Pharrell Williams – Happy. Self explanatory 😀

The Lion King – Hakuna Matata. A motto that I try to live by… it means no worries for the rest of your days!

Les Miserables – Little People & Do You Hear The People Sing. Just because some of the verses are very relevant at the moment (and I LOVE Les Mis!) – plus I’m only 5″3, so Little People signifies that height doesn’t restrict an individuals capabilities.

Hercules (Disney’s) – Go the Distance. As I believe that I can (and will) achieve great things in my lifetime.

And I couldn’t write this post without including… Frozen – Let It Go! Signifying that I’m ready for the next stage of my life, no matter what anyone would think of me.

365 Days of Writing Prompts rebellion: Pentatonix!

I’ve decided to rebel against todays blog prompt, as I don’t have enough time to think of a story (be it fiction or non-fiction) that ends in a clever twist. So instead, I thought I’d share this fantabulous new song, which has now become an obsession… I loved Disclosure’s Latch when it first came out last year and I adore Pentatonix, so to have the two combined is a match made in heaven! 

Comprised of five members (Kirstie Maldonado, Mitch Grassi, Scott Hoying, Avi Kaplan and Kevin Olusola), Pentatonix are an acapella group who create their amazing music using only their vocal chords. My brother introduced me to this group back at the beginning of 2012 with their amazing cover of Gotye’s Somebody That I Used To Know… immense! Pentatonix then became champions (of course) of NBC’s The Sing Off in 2011, which launched them into further success and they began touring last year. I have now seen them perform live twice and both times they were absolute perfection!

As well as creating La La Latch, the following covers and mashups are amongst my favourites, and seriously if you haven’t heard any of their songs before, listen to them now! You can thank me later.

* Problem – Arianna Grande

* Daft Punk mashup

* Happy – Pharrell Williams

* Say Something – A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera

* Evolution of Music mashup

* We Are Ninjas – Inspired by the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie

From the gut

#185: Tell us about the last time you had a real, deep, crying-from laughing belly laugh.

See, I can clearly remember quite a few times where I’ve literally cried with laughter, but I cannot for the life of me recall what we were actually laughing about. It generally tends to be about something really stupid… well insanely stupid! But I love these types of laughter as it leaves you quite euphoric and light headed, and by the end of it, you’ve pretty much forgotten what was so funny in the first place!

They’ll come to me later on this evening no doubt. 

Earworm

#113: What song is stuck in your head (or on permanent rotation in your CD or MP3 player) these days? Why does it speak to you?

At the moment, I am addicted to Rather Be by Clean Bandit ft. Jess Glynn and will happily listen to it over and over! I have no relation to the lyrics but I think the reason I enjoy it so much is because it’s a catchy tune, it’s a happy song which always brightens whatever I’m doing when it comes on and I also love singing it, too. I must admit though after watching the original video, it definitely wins the ‘Most bizarre music video’ award!

This choice was a toughie though, as I’m equally addicted to Pharrell Williams’ Happy … as is everyone on the planet right now!

Happy happy joy joy

#87: We cry for lots of reasons: sadness, pain, fear . . . and happiness. When was the last time you shed tears of joy?

Easy… when I watched my brother in his drama production the day after my birthday, a few weeks back. It was his singing that made the tears of happiness and pride fall as he’s never participated in a public show like this… and to be honest, I’d never heard him sing like that in all my life! He had quite a few solo sections within the four or so songs he performed in and it felt like my heart (and the fabric of time) had stopped with every word he sung… it was just incredible! I don’t normally get emotional in that way but I have never felt prouder to have him as my little brother. I thought I was going to burst with pride!