Sybil Barrington interviewed by Dr. Greg Goode on May 11, 2015, in Hamilton, Bermuda. The evening before was the show “Sybil Returns,” at Bermuda’s Hamilton City Hall.
The topic turns to diunitality, or “crossroads” as Mark calls it.
Mark Anderson is the man behind The Queen of Bermuda, Sybil Barrington. Sybil is one of the world’s most prominent drag artists and entertainers. Greg has known Sybil for about 20 years.
In 2010 Sybil was named one of the 100 most influential gay entertainers, whose mission “is to enhance and foster what matters most: creating a level of understanding and respect between heterosexuals and homosexuals by providing the clear understanding of the true hearts of gay people who desire to live in peace and harmony among others; basic human rights are afforded to all people, regardless of who they are and the preferences they make in life; and for all gay people to be considered as a respectable, contributing part of society.”
Cue Sheet for the Sybil Interview
= Introduction =
1:45 – Having a positive attitude
4:30 – Bermuda and the sexual revolution
5:20 – Discos, clubs and sessions
7:20 – How Sybil first got into drag – the dressing came before the concept
10:00 – Trips to New York
10:40 – “Crossovers and crossroads” as metaphors for diunitality
= Coming to New York=
11:00 – Makeup, self-esteem, lipsynching, coming to New York
12:00 – Coming to perform Patti LaBelle
13:30 – Clarisse Taylor (from The Cosby Show) assisting Sybil’s career
14:30 – The cultural and personal importance of Harlem
16:00 – The evolution of the “Sybil” character
19:00 – Forming the performance group “Illusions”
23:00 – A teaching lineage for the arts of dressing and performing
24:30 – Lena Horne!!!
26:00 – The breakup of the Illusions
27:30 – The true meaning of friendship
= Back to Bermuda =
29:30 – Returning to Bermuda, the importance of family
= Social Activism =
34:00 – Dealing with his history and sexual discrination in Bermuda
36:00 – Taking a stand for gay identity at the Bermuda Day Parade in 2005
42:00 – Application denied to do a show at City Hall, the “Carnegie Hall” of Bermuda, where there had been discrimination of various kinds.
44:00 – In Bermuda, “everything is black and white.”
46:00 – Legislation passed in 2013 against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation; activity in various charities
48:00 – A charity walk for “Center Against Abuse” (www.centreagainstabuse.bm/)
49:38 – A triumphant return to City Hall, in the show “Sybil Returns” on Mother’s Day at City Hall, where she was denied several years earlier, funds to go in support of the Centre Against Abuse. (www.royalgazette.com/article/201505…NEWS/150509906)
50:30 – Sybil’s commitment to helping the “unwanted boy or unwanted girl out there who had been abandoned by their loved ones”
51:00 – Many Bermudians consider Sybil to be an ambassador for Bermuda