Michael Schuddinck is the social secretary for gay rugby club the Kings Cross Steelers. Michael wants to visit Egypt – and is hosting a Drag Race party at the Two Brewers this Friday.
Where are you from originally?
I am born and raised in Antwerp, Belgium. My parents are Belgian and German.
And where do you live now?
I’ve lived in Streatham for two years with my amazing flatmate and fellow rugby player, Matt. But I’ve been in London for five years already – how time flies by!
What do you love about London and why?
Before I moved to London, I would come here twice a year. I think London has the complete mix of things I love; theatre, architecture, history, different cultures and the social aspect too.
What was the first gay venue you visited?
Red & Blue in Antwerp, Belgium. It is the biggest gay club and they were holding a Studio 54 party. It was a total revelation. I saw all kinds of people and flamboyance and had an amazing night.
What is your role at the Kings Cross Steelers?
As social secretary I am mainly in charge of holding all social events within our club, and am busy doing fundraisers to make sure our club keeps on running and it is accessible for all people to join.
What can we expect at the Steelers’ Drag Race?
If you were there last year, you’ll know it was an amazing night, where all people were singing and cheering for all eight of the contestants. It was a total sell out and it is one of our craziest social night outs, which shows how united we are as a club. This year will be even more crazy and spectacular, with Mary Mac and Charlie Hides judging and performing.
What was the last theatre show you saw, where, and what did you think of it?
I saw Heathers: The Musical. As a new musical, I thought this was amazingly funny and took me back to the Winona Ryder classic – “Fuck me gently with a chainsaw.” It’s still playing at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and is an absolute must see. Top cast and fun night out.
What is your guilty pleasure and why?
My guilty pleasure is watching the most crap TV you can have on television. I just want to switch my brain off after work and training, and watch some Love Island, Big Brother or X Factor.
I think it must be presenting on the Steelers’ Drag Race itself. I am presenting in drag, which is totally out of my comfort zone, but I love pumping up the crowd and cracking a few jokes on stage.
Best gift you’ve ever received and why?
This must sound so stupid, but I still remember when I got my teddy bear from my granny. I was so happy as a child and I still have it. Don’t worry, I don’t sleep with it anymore, as these days I am the teddy bear.
What has been the highlight of your career so far and why?
I am head of production at a luxury fashion brand, and two to three months ago we worked on the outfit of Beyonce for the video of Apesh*t with Jay-Z, which she wanted to wear on stage again, fully covered in Swarovski crystals, for her American part of the On the Run II Tour. She looked amazing.
If you could go back in time which year would you choose and why?
I would go back to the 90s. I literally love everything about that time – music, movies and that was the time I really started to explore how to live my further life in a social and professional way. Learned a lot over all those years.
What’s the best party you’ve ever been to and what made it so good?
Tomorrowland! It is an annual big outdoor festival party in Belgium, which looks like a fairytale land and has some of the biggest DJs coming over. People all over the world attend and it is an amazing feeling to be so united. But, Burning Man is on my list… I think that one would beat this.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Life your live as you want it.
Who is your LGBT+ hero and why?
I have a few, but from all current LGBT+ heroes it must be Courtney Act. I love how she can educate people in these present days in a very appropriate and correct way. I find it inspiring seeing her speak to people about our community, and make them understand, we are all human beings.
Who are the most entertaining people you follow on social media and why?
I think it must be my friends or the guys from rugby, they post a load of stuff on there which makes me lol. And to be fair, I make it even worse by replying with just a bit of banter. *evil laugh*
Where in the world would you like to visit before you die and why?
I would love to visit Egypt. I was obsessed by Greek and Egyptian mythology as a child so I really want to explore the pyramids and ride a camel in the desert.
What is one thing you wish you knew when you were younger?
Start playing rugby earlier. But, Belgium doesn’t really represent rugby that much. Since I moved to London, and I joined the Kings Cross Steelers, it changed my life in a significant way and I made some of the best friends.