She’s managed to become a drag queen of legendary proportions… So what do we know about Coco Peru and the man behind the legend, Clinton Leupp?
Coco Peru has been engorging audience’s comedy senses for 26 years. Many will know her for her turn in the seminal 90’s gay movie, Trick (“It Burns…”) while many new fans are getting to know about her through her hilarious YouTube channel. Her trademark copper-red flicked hairdo makes her brand one of the most long-lasting in the history of drag.
So what do we know about her!
How did Coco Peru’s creator, Clinton Leupp come out?
In an interview with THEGAYUK in 2015, Clinton revealed, “I did have to go through the same process just like every other gay man…I had all the usual fears and dread of coming out just like anyone else but it was only when I addressed them that life got better for me.” Clinton was constantly told to “butch up” when he was at school, but when it came to telling his parents about being gay he said, “I was very lucky as when I came out to my parents they were actually relieved that I was both healthy and happy especially as we had just lost my sister to cancer”.
Clinton was constantly told to “butch up” when he was at school, but when it came to telling his parents about being gay he said, “I was very lucky as when I came out to my parents they were actually relieved that I was both healthy and happy especially as we had just lost my sister to cancer”.
Is Coco Peru married?
Yep, Clinton is married to Raphael, they got married in Spain in 2007, before it was legal in the USA.
Where is Coco Peru from?
The Bronx, New York. In the latest interview with THEGAYUK, Coco Peru told us that she goes back once a year “to do a show”. She goes up to the little neighbour where she grew up for a day and has “lunch in a diner” and “visits the cemetery”… and then she “gets the hell out of there”.
What kind of student was Clinton?
Clinton tells us, “I was a terrible student, I was so gay, in a working-class neighbourhood, that I grew up in, I really stood out, for that reason, I was a target for bullying and being called all sorts of names. I was a smart kid up until the second grade, and then things fell apart”. Because of the bullying, Clinton shared that it was impossible to concentrate on school with the homophobic bullying. It was at college where Clinton found his smarts.
Because of the bullying, Clinton shared that it was impossible to concentrate on school with the homophobia. But it all changed later on. At college, Clinton found his smarts.
What is Clinton most afraid of?
“Being homeless… I always knew that was a possibility that I could end up like that”. Also, Clinton has a fear of sharks after seeing Jaws at the age of 10.
Coco Peru used to do tag graffiti
To get people interested in her early shows Coco Peru took to tagging the sidewalks of New York, “(I) spray painted on the sidewalks – ‘Miss Coco Peru – she knows’. So that people would look down and say ‘who’s Coco Peru and what does she know’.”
Does Coco Peru have advice for younger Queens coming up through reality TV?
“When I do meet the young queens nowadays who were lucky enough to be on a reality show, I encourage them, it’s great and they’ve had an amazing opportunity, but continue on creating a craft that’s going to carry them long-term.”
Where was the first time Coco Peru wore a dress?
“I used to sneak into my mum’s closet, when they were at work and slip into something more comfortable”.
Clinton/Coco Peru is straight up the most honest person you’ll ever meet.
When asked what her reaction would be if she found $45,000 in unmarked bills in a suitcase, Coco Peru said, “I’d take out an announcement, I’ve found wallets… and I do return them… My Catholic guilt will haunt me for the rest of my life”.
The most expensive thing Coco/Clinton has ever bought but never used?
“My parents bought me a piano when I was a kid, because I wanted piano lessons, they spent a fortune on piano lessons and it never took, I hated it. To this day I feel guilty that my parents wasted all that money”.
In the end, they donated the baby grand…” I used to love sitting on it… that’s the truth”.
What three things would she take to a desert island?
A photo of her husband, crossword puzzle book and a pen (to do the crosswords). “I’d end up comitting suicide, once the puzzle book was done!”
Coco Peru is back in the UK on tour, in Manchester, London, Bristol and Brighton, find out more at CocoPeru.com
The editor and chief of THEGAYUK. All in a previous life wrote and produced songs on multi-platinum records.