Remembering Heklina: Heklina Will Not Be Silenced

Apr 4, 2023 · 1985 views

Heklina with a shit eating grin with Marc Felion and Peaches Christ, backstage at the Drag Queens of Comedy Show in Chicago. Photo: Fausto Fernós.

We are heartbroken.

San Francisco legend Heklina was found dead in her hotel room on Monday morning in London by her longtime friend, collaborator and co-star Peaches Christ.

Over the years we taped so many good shows with Heklina that it’s hard to pick one, so this week we’re reposting our favorites to celebrate the amazing life and legacy of this amazing comedian and drag queen.

Along with her gal pal Peaches Christ, Heklina shaped and created the modern drag scene in San Francisco with their wildly popular and irreverent Trannyshack shows and nights at STUD. After the name change of the shows to Mother, Heklina and Peaches moved their events to Oasis, a bar she co-founded with her longtime friend D’Arcy Drollinger.

Heklina touched so many people’s lives, including ours.

A fierce, original drag queen with a wonderfully twisted sense of humor, Heklina was a popular guest in the early days of our podcast Feast of Fun, back when we called it Feast of Fools.

Later on she went on to create her own podcast “Drag Time with Heklina” where she interviewed many notable queer artists including Ana Matronic of the Scissor Sisters.

Back in 2006, our first live podcast in San Francisco featured Heklina in it, and she was so befuddled about what the Internet was that in a rare moment, she showed up out of drag in her everyday clothes for the show.

Despite always being super busy, Heklina took time to visit with us whenever we were in town or when she came to Chicago.

It’s devastating to think about the sorrow, but it’s comforting to know that her humor, style and rascally nature lives on in the lives of so many artists, LGBTQ+ folks and the people who loved her in San Francisco.

Thanks for all the memories, laughs and fun Heklina.

Here’s what we think her twisted sense of humor would have said about her own death:

“The next roast of Heklina will be held at Fleischmann’s Crematorium.”

Heklina’s death is a lot like drag: both real and fake, deeply personal, heartbreaking and ridiculous. Long Live Heklina!

Originally posted FOF #2344 – Heklina Will Not Be Silenced – 06.14.16

Heklina built her drag community from scratch and survived the AIDS crisis. Nothing is going to stop this gal. Photos: Joesph Wolfgang Ohlert & Nick Ice.

Heklina built her drag community from scratch and survived the AIDS crisis. Nothing is going to stop this gal. Photos: Joesph Wolfgang Ohlert & Nick Ice.

Heklina is a living legend- she started her amazing drag show in San Francisco way back in 1996. This iconic night of drag, then known as Trannyshack, ignited the careers of countless entertainers including Lady Gaga, Peaches Christ and Ana Matronic.

Over the years, Heklina saved her dollar tips and got some friends to invest in her own club Oasis only to rebrand the drag show as Mother and not without a little controversy.

Today, Heklina joins us to take a look at the horrific shooting in Orlando and how gay bar owners are responding to the violence.


How drag queens have gone from being fringe acts to mainstream attractions.

Why San Francisco can’t have nice things.

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Heklina’s tips on picking up a straight guy on Craigslist!

Just one of her tricks!

Just one of her tricks!

Episode #2344

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