Brighton drag queen Lola Lasagne announces move to Manchester

A DRAG queen has announced she is moving out of Brighton after more than 23 years.

Lola Lasagna, real name Stephen Richards, said it was time for “new challenges” after moving to Brighton in 1998 and he will be moving to Manchester this Friday.

He said: “If Brighton and I were in a relationship I would still love her but we stopped having sex a while ago.

“Manchester offers me new paths and new people to meet.”

Stephen also said the death of James Ledward, an LGBTQ+ activist who passed away in 2019 after a short illness, “tarnished our city and scene in many ways.”

The artist will continue to perform occasionally in Brighton and said he will “definitely” be involved in next year’s Pride celebrations.

Stephen took to the main stage as Lola at Saturday’s Pride festival, paying tribute to James and introducing Christina Aguilera to the stage.

In his speech, he said that Pride remains a protest and that the LGBTQ+ community must prevent progress towards equality from being undermined.

He said: “Our rights are being threatened in some parts of the world – we will say that will not happen in the UK.”

The Argus: Lola Lasagna on stage at Brighton Pride on SaturdayLola Lasagna on the stage at Brighton Pride on Saturday

Looking back on his time in Brighton, Stephen said: “I’ve watched the LGBTQ+ scene develop quite nicely and through my performance, working with Pride, The Rainbow Fund and James Ledward I’ve learned how to produce shows and my voice is heard and above all the right words are learned.

“I have worked with mayors, council, police and boycotted Pride during those two terrible years of 2010 and 2011 when it lost its purpose and abandoned much of the community.

“I’ve had some of the best gigs and times of my life here. Brighton was pretty great.”

Stephen will be back for his first Brighton appearance as Lola in the Charles Street Tap in Marine Parade on September 4th. Brighton drag queen Lola Lasagne announces move to Manchester

Fry Electronics Team

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