CEBU CITY, Philippines — Waiting under the pouring rain, anticipating the ideal moment to dance with the love of her life beneath the streetlights after a span of anticipation, Taylor Sheesh’s emotions could have been described as a mix of nervousness and excitement, as she stepped onto the stage to once again sing her heart out.
Taylor Sheesh, Mac Coronel in real life, amidst all the popularity she’s been getting lately, is just like any other ‘Swiftie’ out there.
Mac is an avid fan of international star, Taylor Swift since his junior high days. Sixteen-year-old Mac would listen to the radio, listening to the early taps of rain trailing along the seams of their house’ creaky roof, and would wait until her fave TV segment would show up to the screen
Six years later, as though the fates have revisited her life again, she befell into a profession that would pull her back to her idol, even as years went by. Living out of her profession through her fangirling dreams since back then.
AN ORDINARY DAY IN THE LIFE OF MAC CORONEL
Twenty-eight-year-old Mac Coronel started her drag performances in 2017, while doing her day job as a call center agent in one of the BPO companies situated inside Bonifacio Global District in Taguig.
“Since 2017, I started doing drag and since fan ako (I was a fan of) (Taylor Swift) since 2009, so I tried to impersonate her and it works naman (really works),” Mac said.
Mac started her job as a call center agent in 2014, while she started appearing in drag shows in 2017. Since then, she has been simultaneously working while having fun with her new dynamic life.
Aside from doing drag performances as his own self during her first several years as a drag artist, Mac never used any other persona in her drag performances since then. Doing drag performances as Taylor Sheesh brings Mac back to her memories in high school, in which her love and support for her idol comforted her in her early days of puppy love and schooling.
In an exclusive interview with CDN, Mac shared that she finished high school in Sta. Catalina National High School in Antipolo, where she started appreciating the songs of star, Taylor Swift.
“When I heard the song ‘Fifteen,’ nakarelate ako sa kantang yun. Lahat naman tayo magfirst love ganun ganun kaso hanggang crush lang talaga kasi dapat unahin yung schooling,” she said.
(When I heard the song “Fifteen,” I can really relate to that song. All of us have a first love like that, like that, but it was only the crush stage really because we still have to prioritize schooling.)
CHALLENGES FACED BY TAYLOR SHEESH
During the interview, Mac also mentioned some difficulties she have had with in a life as Taylor Sheesh.
“Yung schedule and then yung culture sa drag parang ganun? Yung iba bigla bigla na lang, parang walang consent?,” she added.
(The schedule and then the culture of drag is like that? Others will just do a surprise thing, it’s like without consent?)
As Taylor Sheesh, Mac said that sometimes fans and audiences would go over the line, disregarding her safe space during and after performances.
“Madalas during photo ops, minsan nanghihila sila medyo off siya,” she said.
(Most of the times during photo ops, sometimes, they will pull me, it seems a little off.)
Instead of throwing the same energy back, Mac decided to educate them instead, especially to those audiences that were present in the venue.
“Pinagsasabihan ko talaga sila in a nice way actually. Dapat mo silang dahan dahan pagsabihan kasi ikaw yung magmumukhang masama,” she added.
(I really tell them in a nice way actually. We should really tell them slowly, because it will turn out that you will be the one that is bad.)
TAYLOR SHEESH IN THE NEXT 5 YEARS
In the interview, Mac expressed that even after 5 years will pass by, she can still see herself pursuing her career in the Drag community as Taylor Sheesh.
“Yes, since na recognized na siya globally so parang itutuloy ko na siya. Aside from being Taylor Sheesh, gusto ko magdrag, gusto ko magshow sa mga bar and sa mga events ganon,” she said.
(Yes, since she have been recognized globally so it would seem that I would have to continue her. Aside from being Taylor Sheesh, I also would like to do drag, I would also like to have a show in a bar and in events.)
And as if the fates were listening to Mac, she received another gig that entails a possible spike in her popularity, mainly online. In August, Mac received an invitation to a surprise birthday bash hosted by Filipino Celebrity and Global Influencer, Bretman Rock.
“Chinat ako ng manager niya parang random na nagtext sa kin, nagtext sya sa kin na nandito siya (Bretman) sa Philippines for a birthday ng pinsan niya. At ayun, dun na nagwork at sumakto siya sa schedule ko, and nagwork naman siya.” she added.
(The manager messaged me in chat, like some random text to me, he texted me that he (Bretman) is in the Philippines for a birthday of his cousin. And there it worked at it fit my schedule, and it worked.)
Photos and videos were then uploaded online; seeing Bretman and Mac, dressed as ‘Taylor Sheesh’, celebrating and enjoying the time they spent together.
With the popularity Mac has currently gained, Mac still believes that paying forward is the right way to do in saying thanks.
“Gusto ko talagang mag thank you sa kanila kasi nakakanoverwhelm. Grateful ako sa kanila kasi narerecognize na ang mga Filipino Swifties; that Philippines is a ‘Taylor Nation’ country talaga. Sa kung paano nakin sinuportahan si Taylor, ay ganun na rin yung pagsusuporta nila sa akin,” she said.
(I would like to thank them because they are really overwhelming. I am so grateful to them that the Filipino Swifties are now recognized; that the Philippines is a ‘Taylor Nation’ country really. How I supported Taylor is how they also supported me.)
Mac is set to embark on another tour across Filipino malls as part of her “Eras Tour 2.0 Unleashed,” A Taylor Swift Listening Party. Joining her on this glamorous journey is her fellow drag artist, ‘Taylor Shiteh,’ as they captivate audiences with talent, beauty and elegance, all while Filipino Swifties join them on this exciting journey.