Superbia is Manchester Pride’s year-round programme of arts and culture, designed to support, curate, fund and promote LGBTQ+ events throughout Greater Manchester. Superbia supports LGBTQ+ artists by promoting events through its events page and social media, funds LGBTQ+ events with Superbia Grants and by curating original events through collaboration with partners, venues, groups, curators, community members, artists and creatives.
Manchester’s Finest has partnered with Superbia on this new series, Superbia Spotlights, which aims to shine a light on some of the incredible Superbia-supported arts and culture talent across Greater Manchester.
Manchester’s drag artists are internationally renowned for being ahead of the curve when it comes to creativity and originality. Long before RuPaul’s Drag Race ever hit British TV screens, our homegrown #ManchesterQueens were bringing drag into new realms, from high art and politics, to loving parodies and iconic pop music.
Firmly in the ‘iconic pop’ category is Manchester drag musician Monopoly Phonic. Her musical output is camp, catchy and unexpectedly cool. Where other drag musicians rely on quick-fix gay-club bangers, Monopoly strays beyond that safe territory, writing ironically brilliant songs about friendship, hook-ups, drag and living for the moment.
Back in the early days of her drag career, Monopoly brought her obsession with Gail Platt to the loving crowds at Cha Cha Boudoir and has never looked back.
She has performed around the country including at Manchester International Festival in 2019, where she gave a magnificent riotous pop-medley tribute to the victims of the Manchester Bombing, an experience extremely close to her life and heart.
When she’s not turning out future classics, Monopoly is also a DJ, including running her own pop party night Girls Night Out where only the fiercest female pop leaves the speakers.
Monopoly’s latest track is a lockdown special, a cover version of Spice Girls’ ‘Let Love Lead The Way’ remixed almost beyond recognition in the high-energy style of Cascada, Scooter and Basshunter. The resulting beat surrounded with crowd noise echoes a longing for lost gigs and dancefloors that now stand empty. Monopoly explains more:
“The 20 year old lyrics of this song, about sitting alone in your room, watching the world go by, keeping the faith and letting love lead the way take on a brand new meaning in the current climate.”
The COVID-19 lockdown hit the artist particularly hard as she recently succumbed to the virus:
“In the original lockdown I planned to be creative and as annoying as ever… however that didn’t really work out as days into lockdown I caught COVID, and I seem to have had the long tail version as I struggled with fatigue for months after and barely left my bed.
“Even now I wouldn’t say I’m back to 100% with my energy and breathing (I recorded this song in chunks on about 12 different days lol). So be careful out there because COVID is real and it can be a b*tch!! As we move into “Lockdown 2”, whatever happens, let’s just remember to let love lead the way…”
Pick up your hairbrush mic and crank up the volume. Thank you for the music Monopoly, we need this amazing energy more than ever.
You can keep up with Monopoly Phonic – and you really should, her social media is a scream – at all of these places:
Monopoly’s full back catalogue of music is available on Spotify: