Ladies and gentleman, this Second Saturday at Southpaw our very own Queerespondent Jen Tullock will be making her worldwide debut in character as everyone’s new favorite 90s white girl rapper Jenatari. Who better to ring in the holiday season then one of our very favorite local comediennes! But before she was Jenatari.. she was Estelle! and Charisma! And an almost-expired Bushwick roommate. We caught up with her in advance of Jenatari’s debut performance to talk about her past characters and various incarnations of the one and only Jen Tullock. Scroll to the bottom for a sneak preview (and some good advice) from Broolyn’s newest lady emcee!
We begin with one of our favorite classics: imagining the future of this special pair of Bushwick roommates. Here Jen teamed up with talented singer, comedian, and actress Tiffany Topol, fresh off her national tour of Xanadu, to travel many years into the future and see just what happens In Twenty Years Time. We caught up with Tiffany to discuss working with Jen.
Queerespondence: You two are too much! Where did y’all film this?
Tiffany Topol: This was a typical afternoon in the living room of Jen’s previous apartment in Greenpoint (we live together in Bushwick now). Like most of our projects, I haven’t the faintest idea as to how it came about. Usually we each drink two very large cups of coffee, a scarf falls around someone’s head in such a way, and half an hour later we’ve got a little piece of brilliance (in our opinion).
Queerespondence: How close to the truth is this?
Tiffany: Well, at the present moment we don’t have a Giacometti over here in “East Williamsburg,” nor do we have an ethnically ambiguous maid (not one that we pay for, anyway). And if I were to ACTUALLY predict the future, I’d say we’d be more likely hang a few Norman Rockwells and employ a gay manny. But the relationship is spot on: we care the most about each other, and everyone else comes second. The drinking part is also true.
Queerespondence: You’re so mean to your future children, how do they feel about your exotic lifestyle and cruel demeanor?
Tiffnay: First of all, I daresay “mean” is relative. I like to think of us as a pair of hedonistic Mary Poppins’: we simply want what we think is best for everyone (including ourselves), and “the best” consists simply of living amongst beauty and class and consistently looking amazing. It’s the sort of upbringing that they may not appreciate at age ten, fifteen, twenty, thirty, thirty-five . . . but by God, when those kids are forty-five and they look and feel as fantastic as we do, they’ll be thanking us all the way to the Inaugural Ball.
Another of Jen’s inspiring characters is the amazing Estelle – a look way, way into the future, though not necesarily Jen’s.
Queerespondence: Where is Estelle from? When did you find her?
Jen Tullock: I think she’s from an old MGM reel vault somewhere in Los Angeles. Like a chain smoking, tap dancing Rumplestilstkin.
Queerespondence: She’s old as dirt. Can she reveal her own age?
Jen: She lost count sometime after the Carter administration.
Queerespondence: Whats she up to now?
Jen: Making pina coladas, ordering her third Shake Weight (she became frustrated at the lack of results from the first two and threw them both in the community pool), and feeding her sea monkies.
Long Island City Girl and Tullock pal Marla Mindelle (currently in “South Pacific” on Broadway) plays opposite Jen’s character Charisma, as simple virginal Grace, the sweet new step sister to the tough talking Charisma.
Queerespondence: Where did Charisma grow up?
Jen Tullock: On the cold, cruel road. Her father was a stand-in on several Lionel Richie videos, which launched a semi-successful career on the professional karaoke circuit.
Queerespondence: She seems a little rough. What really peeves her?
Jen: Disproportionately mixed Kool-aid, the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir (from which she was “politely dismissed” in 2008), T-Mobile.
Queerespondence: Where can we find her now?
Jen: Hard at work on her third single “Guess What None UR Biznizz Just Kidding I Luv U”, single handedly upping Cool Ranch Doritos sales, and watching Wendy Williams.
And finally, Jenatari gives us some tips on being a great emcee, like her, obvi! See you this Second Saturday 12/11 Down South at Southpaw (125 5th Avenue, Park Slope) for her worldwide debut!