An Illawarra drag queen is behind a social initiative designed to support queer artists affected by the cancellation of upcoming performances under COVID-19 restrictions.

James Christie-Murray, who performs as Pablo and is the founder of Queer Space, started the #BuyATicket initiative to provide direct donations to local queer artists who have lost gigs.

“The initiative involves buying a virtual ticket to a show you would go to, like Queer AF or a local drag show, with 100 per cent of the proceeds going to local artists who are out of work at the moment,” he said.

Audio: Christie-Murray and Larkham discuss how they have adapted to online and what they miss most about performing.

Christie-Murray said he turned to online methods, including live streaming games and hosting virtual trivia, to keep the queer community connected.

“It’s hitting us pretty hard but we’re doing all we can to keep the queer scene visible,” he said.

“I kind of just fell into streaming Animal Crossing during Covid-19. Not only does it allow me to connect with an audience, it also shows that drag is an art instead of just wearing a lot of makeup and wearing extravagant makeup.”

Adam Larkham, aka Roxee Horror, has also started a YouTube channel to boost connection.

“A big reason behind starting Word Vomit was that people we see on a weekly basis get to have a bit of community involvement. It’s also keeping my face out there, too,” he said.