Listening Project

Conversation between mother and son, Margaret and Jamie, about Jamie's work as a drag queen and his dominatrix alter ego, Fi Fi.

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  • Is part of (Collection)

    The Listening Project

  • Recording locations

    BBC Tees, Middlesbrough

  • Interviewees

    Campbell, Jamie, 1994- (male, drag queen/student), Campbell, Margaret, 1965- (female, cook)

  • Producers

    BBC Tees

  • Recordist

    Carter, Andrew

  • Abstract

    Jamie played with dolls and dressed up in girls' clothes when he was a boy and came out when he was fourteen. Now he's eighteen he's just started working the clubs in Middlesbrough as a drag queen, his alter ego is Fi Fi a dominatrix who enables Jamie to say all the things he's wanted to but was too shy to say as himself. Fi Fi has taken him over and he struggles to find time for his studies and his part-time job. Mum is afraid her son is putting all his eggs in one basket and if he doesn't get his big break with Fi Fi what will he do then? Jamie wants to do it now while he is young. Mum fears he's going to burn himself out and wants him to separate himself from Fi Fi and get his life back into balance. Now he's got a place at The London College of Fashion and in the autumn will be heading to London and Mum is worried about the seedier side of his chosen career and that he will be vulnerable in a big city as he's only used to a small Northern scene. Mum is concerned that the 'bitch' persona of Fi Fi is spilling over into their home life and relationship and she's concerned that people will not like or respect him for who he really is. Mum thinks his driven nature comes through wanting acceptance from his absent father and being famous is making up for a big hole in his life. Mum warns him his big break will not happen tomorrow and while she wants him to be happy she warns him it will not be easy. Jamie finds his Mum's wisdom hard listening but accepts that he has overstepped the mark with his bitchiness at home and pledges to find more time for Jamie, his friends and his Mum. The conversation has brought them together and Mum seems to have put the brakes on Jamie and made him examine his priorities.

  • Description

    The Listening Project conversations collectively form a picture of our lives and relationships today. Recordings were made by BBC producers of people sharing an intimate conversation, lasting up to an hour and on a topic of the speakers' choice.

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