WOW’s superstar in her own right, Linda Simpson, pays tribute to legendary drag performer, Sweetie who passed away today.
“Sad news. Sweetie, one of the true greats of New York City’s drag scene died early today. For the past three years she had been bravely fighting a battle with cancer, but was still performing as recently as last week.
She first started doing drag in the early 1990s after already having spent several years working as an actor. Drag was a perfect outlet for her dramatic skills. She established herself on the East Village scene at the Pyramid Club and Boybar as a captivating lipsyncher and hilarious comedian, billing herself as a “big-titted honkey soul mama.” Her specialty were emotional ballads by Bette Midler, Dolly Parton and other great ladies of showbiz.
Over the years, she never left the nightlife and was a key player at Jackie 60 and other legendary parties, as well as a producer of many of her own parties, including the long-running variety show Cheez Whiz. She also made a good living producing erotic get-togethers for trans girls and their admirers.
Her silver screen appearances included playing the pageant hostess in To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar and a feisty hooker in RuPaul’s indie flick Starrbooty. On stage, she portrayed a grand drag diva in Tarrel Alvin McCraney’s Off Broadway hit Wig Out!
Sweetie and I met when she was brand-new, and I was the first promoter to hire her to perform. We remained friends ever since, and I always found her amazing. She never let her hefty size get in the way. In fact, she presented herself as a voluptuous diva. Her personality was sincere and uplifting, but she also had a riotously cynical and filthy sense of humor. Most of all, she was very loyal, and the outpouring of grief over her death is proof of what a huge impact she made on so many people’s lives.
She was one hell of a broad and I’m going to miss her.” –Linda Simpson