Hello, beauties. As you know, Lady Gaga has released her new album of creative prompts for your drag shows, and as we’re all cooped up indoors right now, you’re in a perfect position to begin work IMMEDIATELY on your Chromatica lip syncs. We’ll be expecting to see a high level of polish in your virtual livestreams, as well as if it’s ever safe to re-open performance venues in the US.
As I’m sure you’ve all listened to the album by now, I expect that you already have numerous ideas for your upcoming drag routines. But in case you need a cheat sheet to the various prompts in each song, I’ve compiled them into a handy list. Heterosexuals, you may read this as well. We’ll let you know when our shows are ready for you.
The instrumental opening to the album is sweeping, majestic, and brief, and may be used to begin a show with the house lights to black. If you have a degree in dance, you may use it here.
The lyrics reference Alice in Wonderland, so beginners may find it comfortable to go with a literal interpretation—blue dresses as in the Disney movie, Queen of Hearts costumes, Mad Hatter hats, etc. Advanced drag performers may construct size illusions on stage using stilts or forced perspective stagecraft. As the first song on the album, the song is an effective mood-setter, so it’s generally best employed at an early slot in the set list, activating the same “you’re in for something weird” vibe as the Cats overture. (Sidenote: do not allow work on Chromatica lip-syncs to overshadow rehearsals for your Cats lip-syncs.)
Continue to refine the Stupid Love number that you created in February. Because we have already seen you perform this number, you will be expected to add at least three new gags. Consult Irene if you need help with the choreography.
Rain on Me
Those of you who perform at venues that allow liquids on stage may wish to stock up on tarps now. The “rain on me” prompt may be used to provide the audience with squirt guns, but be sure that they are only given to trusted plants unless you want to explain to the manager why a bachelorette party shorted the stage lights. Advanced performers may wish to create a number that uses “reign on me” as a pun, particularly if you have already introduced the Queen of Hearts in Alice. Bukkake jokes will be considered hacky, unless you think you have something new to say about getting cum on your face.
Because the leaker allowed you to hear this one a few days early, you should already have a concept for this number. The lyric “I’m a free woman” provides wide latitude for symbols of liberation—rope bondage, handcuffs, smashing the patriarchy, etc. Be sure to educate yourself about the context in which Gaga wrote the song to avoid being inadvertently problematic.
Consider waiting for an acoustic cover of this one. The lyrics are mournful and pained, and while it may be fun to dance to, audiences may respond more strongly to a slower tempo and more sparse arrangement. Advanced performers may find some potential in contrasting the bummer lyrics with a comedy bit—this song is essentially a crying-clown routine, with colorful paint slapped over a tragic face.
End of intermission. You may use your dance degree here as well.
This song is correctly placed mid-album and should occupy a similar position in your set list. Beginners may begin work on an android-inspired routine, and will be allowed to reuse material from any Daft Punk numbers you have done in the past. Consider pairing with LoveGame, if you’re old enough. When designing your number, consider the meaning of the lyrics, which reference antipsychotic drugs. If you’re a statement queen, the use of “pop a 911” in the lyrics may be used to form connections to police violence.
Consider pairing with The Dresden Dolls’ "Coin Operated Boy" or Aqua’s "Barbie Girl"; extra points will be awarded for original mashups. Consider the “plastic doll” prompt a jumping-off point for costume concepts that involve challenging materials; beginners may wish to use this opportunity to learn how to craft with latex. Advanced performers may design a gag involving interchangeable limbs. Turn your tuck into a plastic bulge or create a Greek opening illusion. Another option: Something something something Valley of the Dolls. (I haven't quite worked that one out yet).
We’ll be expecting high-concept sex appeal on this one — and like sex, it's best if you don’t overthink it. There are plenty of double entendres here, and the lyric about “seeing inside” and "unwrap me” invites a reveal. Beginners may go a literal route with a candy-themed costume, but do not neglect the “sour” aspect of the song: There should be a payoff to the setups “I get a little angry” and “I’m super psycho.” Do not lip-sync to Korean if you do not speak Korean.
This is another song that audiences might appreciate more as an acoustic cover—or even a capella—from a performer who can emote with their full body. You'll be able to squeeze tons of tips out of those suckers if you go real hard on this one. Note the moment of quiet around “we could be lovers, even if just tonight” at 2:20 and build your performance around that.
Tons of hooks in this one, particularly for anguish queens: The “r-replay” lyric lets you play with jittery choreography; the reference to “monsters,” meaning Gaga’s fans, invites literal interpretation; the references to “damage” and “scars” are a gift to MUAs who can work with prosthetics. Consider watching Michel Gondry’s music video for Kylie Minogue’s "Come Into My World" for inspiration around the “replay” theme. Ugh, fuck, that music video is so good.
Optional. Not advised if show is running long. (And the show WILL run long.)
Sine from Above
Consider a number inspired by the divine. Angelic looks, nun costumes, or even a Jesus if you’re ambitious. This number should evoke a religious experience, but it doesn’t need to be literal; consider what hearing the voice of the divine and connection with the infinite means to you. Defer to drag kings on how best to interpret Elton's part. For extra credit, create a mix that merges the drums at the end of "Sine from Above" with the drums from the end of Belle and Sebastian’s "A Space Boy Dream," transitioning into "Dirty Dream Number Two."
This is your new anthem number, so you can FINALLY remove "This is Me" from your rotation. The call to “lift me up” is an invitation to advanced performers to crowd surf, but beginners can be creative with stagecraft to elevate themselves throughout the song. Feel free to edit out the bridge in your mix, it’s not doing anything for you.
Go for it if you want, but you better be real good at voguing.