3 min

Cocktail confessions: Community & bar gossip

You might expect a former Spice Girl to be world-weary, especially on the heels of a Roberto Cavalli-wrapped sorta-world tour. But there was Sporty Spice — Melanie C now, if you please — when I arrived in her hotel room to interview her last week as down-to-earth, mature and earnest as you could ask for.

Tidying up her own mess of clothes (and you just know Lady Victoria doesn’t do that), a Finding Nemo stuffed toy on the bed, Miss C sat and spilt on everything from being dropped by her label to the frustration of hearing “less talented” artists doing well and getting lots of radio play. She also had lots to say about the stubborn Spice fans she finds impossible to win over as a solo artist because of their desire to know her only as the sassy tank-top-and-tear-away incarnation ingrained in our pop culture forever.

“You want the fans, obviously,” C says. “But there are some — plenty, really — who only want to see you in one way. It was fun to reunite with the girls and I’ll always be grateful for the Spice Girls. But that’s not me, the music I’m making now is my music, is me, and the fans who appreciate that mean so much.” The girl’s sure got those: The lineup for her concert at the Phoenix last week, part of her cross-Canada tour, began in the wee hours of the morning, people making sure they’d get prime real estate at the general admission event.

And now onto ginger. Wonder if sexy redhead Michelle Stafford experiences similar fan confusion? The Young and the Restless character Phyllis, arguably the show’s most popular character, flew into the GTA for two personal appearances last weekend, dishing with me in the back of her limo on why she thought she’d been able to grow from vindictive nut-job to leading lady so successfully.

“When I first got the part I was just grateful to finally have a job,” says the Emmy-winning actor who’d been working in a roller-blade store prior to becoming one of daytime’s biggest bitches. “I think just playing it as real as possible has helped keep Phyllis around so long.” That and the time you put the octopus on Cricket’s honeymoon bed, lady. Points!

Guess who, don’t sue? What talented nightlife performer who shares a drag name with a late supermodel found herself the target of some bashing last weekend while out in drag? Bashing from her own “people,” gay themselves to boot. Yuck.

Hide your escorts! Bad Boy George is coming to town Aug 10 to perform at the Kool Haus. Those not a fan of his turntable skills will be relieved to know he’s staying away from spinning and will instead perform past hits going all the way back to his pre-heroin Culture Club days. Tix available at That’s where you can also grab tix to the North American tour of Kids in the Hall. Called Live As We’ll Ever Be, the kids hit Massey Hall on Wed, Jun 4 and 5 (doesn’t this seem like it’s shaping up to one hell of an entertaining summer?).

Congrats to a sexy lad named Jon Henderson, who heads to Montreal next month to compete for the title of Mr Priape Wear International. Up against nine other wannabes for the Toronto title at Woody’s, it was a tight race between him and a dude named Carlos(I was one of the judges) who was so hot I yelled “We have a winner!” the second he stepped onstage the first time. But in the end Jon scored the winning points by garnering the most response from the packed audience at the Church St institution. That, and he seemed to have the biggest cock of the lot. I’m a simple gal, at the end of the day, y’all.

More Pride scoop just for you. It’s been confirmed that our cover gal Cyndi Lauper and our very own The Clicks will be in attendance at the official True Colors afterparty happening at Circa (126 John St) Wed, Jun 4 after the tour touches Toronto. The bash is a fundraiser for Egale Canada, specifically to fund safe coming-out programs in high schools. Methinks the whole community should get out to this and make it swirl. Keep your eyes peeled for ticket info.

For the first time ever there will be an official Pride Toronto afterparty on Pride Sunday. Also at Circa, expect a blowout designed for all the colours in our big queer rainbow. DJ Jamal is set to spin in the main room along with Billy Carroll, while performers lined up include RuPaul, Cristobal, Trans-X (“Living on Video”) and cutie Adam Joseph. Denise Benson spins in the ballroom and watch for Dance Yourself To Death, Cozmic Cat, Fritz Helder and DJ TK entertaining there as well. In the cinema lounge it’s the 10-year anniversary of Blockorama with DJ Nik Red. Pride’s Alterna Queer afterparty takes place in the washroom bar with DJ Triple-X and Miss Guy.

So, in other words, watch for the city to descend down to Circa when the big day starts dwindling. Let the summer games begin.