Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall apologises for not including drag kings in Confetti video

21 June 2021, 16:08

Little Mix perform as their male drag alter-egos in Confetti video

Sam  Prance

By Sam Prance

Jade Thirlwall apologised on behalf of Little Mix in a piece about ways in which to be a better LGBTQ+ ally.

Little Mix have just issued a formal apology after being criticised for not including drag kings in their 'Confetti' music video.

In April, Little Mix released their first single since Jesy Nelson left the group. 'Confetti (feat. Saweetie)' became an instant hit, and it recently became the girls' 18th UK Top 10 single. The song also received praise for its queer-positive music video in which Jade Thirlwall, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Perrie Edwards perform in drag alongside some iconic UK drag queens.

However, the group also faced backlash for not inviting drag kings to star in the video and now Jade has apologised for it.

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Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall apologises for not including drag kings in Confetti video
Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall apologises for not including drag kings in Confetti video. Picture: RCA Records UK

Shortly after the video initially came out, multiple drag kings came forward to say that they were disappointed that they had not been invited to take part in the video. Speaking to PopBuzz, London-based drag king Chiyo said: "I stan Little Mix so hard. I love their new album. I love the 'Confetti 'song. I really, really wanted to love the music video."

They added: "When I watched it, I was so excited to see people that I love and admire just thriving in their glory. But then I saw Little Mix as kings, these cis, heterosexual women, something in me just broke a bit. I know that they have never interacted or showed any interest in the drag king community. It was such a missed opportunity."

Now, in a new Metro piece about being an LGBTQ+ ally, Jade has addressed the backlash and apologised. She said: "I don’t think there’s such a thing as a perfect ally. I’m still very much learning. Even recently, after our 'Confetti' music video I was confronted with the fact that, although we made sure our video was incredibly inclusive, we hadn’t brought in any actual drag kings. Some were frustrated, and they had every right to be."

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She continued: "You can have the right intentions and still fall short. As an open ally, I should have thought about that, and I hadn’t, and for that, I apologise. Since then, I’ve been doing more research on drag king culture, because it’s definitely something I didn’t know enough about, whether that was because it isn’t as mainstream yet mixed with my own ignorance. But the point is we mess up, we apologise, we learn from it and we move forward with that knowledge."

Jade ended by writing: "Don’t let the fear of fucking up scare you off. And make sure you are speaking alongside the community, not for the community."