INTERVIEW: Down and Dirty with Taipei Drag Star Magnolia La Manga

We talk to a Taiwan drag icon about 15 years at the heart of a vibrant scene, LGBT rights, performing with Jolin Tsai, and spreading the word to the next generation.

Credit: Alejandro Wang

The news Lens
Date: 2018/09/30
By: Cat Thomas

The drag scene in Taiwan has exploded in recent years with international drag stars regularly being invited to perform. A myriad local performers can also be found gracing the stage at various venues across Taipei and other cities. The News Lens caught up with Magnolia La Manga, or Mags as she is affectionately known, who has been performing drag for 15 years in Taipei. No stranger to stardom herself, Mags, who is a youthful 39 – or possibly 29 depending on who is asking – has recently featured in the Netflix drama “A Taiwanese Tale of Two Cities”, appeared alongside Jolin Tsai (蔡依林) at the 25th Golden Melody awards and in her “PLAY” music video.

She’s also been involved organizing in a series of educational lectures entitled “What is Drag?” in co-operation with National Taiwan University (NTU)’s gay society, which aim to move the conversation on drag outside of the club and pub environment. A longtime advocate for LGBT rights and active fundraiser for several charities, Mags reflects on how the drag scene has changed and on living in Taiwan at a pivotal time for human rights as marriage equality beckons on the horizon.    [FULL  STORY]

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