Golden Handbag Award winning vocalist Gabriella Parrish is known for bringing powerhouse vocals and shedloads of soul to many of the country’s top LGBTQ+ venues and Pride festivals. Born and bred in Brighton, Gabriella featured on the international and acclaimed TV special Adele at the BBC, which has been viewed 60 million times on YouTube alone. Here, she tells Graham Robson what she’s been up to during lockdown, her tips to keep us going, and why we should make the most of the peace and quiet…
I have been enjoying the garden when I can, cooking and watching Netflix. I am big film lover and I also love Masterchef, Dragons’ Den and American Idol so I have been catching up on these.
We’ve seen you perform on Facebook. How does it compare to working in front of a crowd?
It’s different, but fun. I feel more nervous than I would at a normal gig as there’s no live PA system and no one there to tell you if you are doing good or not. So if you are doing songs people don’t like you can lose them which you obviously don’t want as you want everyone to enjoy it. I feel that once you get going it is great fun and very interactive, you feel more relaxed you don’t have to wear heals or eyelashes which is always a bonus!
The Brighton set have been really busy doing live stuff on Facebook etc.. Have you seen much of it?
I have seen a fair few people doing it, all of them are different and great, and I think it gives people something to do and feel like they are still doing what they love just in a different way.
Any tips to keep us from climbing the walls during lockdown?
If you have a garden, get out in it as much as possible. If you don’t then go out for 10 mins a day even just for a walk around the block. Clean as much as you can. Look at what you want to achieve in your home or any work you might want to do that you don’t normally have the time for. Enjoy the peace, we don’t get it often. Call your family and friends, there is no need to feel alone.
Get back to live shows, see my family and friends, have a BBQ and enjoy the garden.
I miss not being able to see my mum and dad and my family the most; we are all very close so for me I find that difficult. Also I miss being able to sit outside somewhere with a coffee on the weekends.
Any thoughts on Brighton & Hove Pride being cancelled?
I think it’s a shame, of course, but I really think that it is the right decision for everyone’s safety. We will overcome this and one day it will be a distant memory and when we get there I am sure we will have a Pride bigger and better than we have ever had before.
Share some words of wisdom to get us through…
Stay focused on the end goal, we are all struggling at times but it is bigger than any of us and it requires all of us to work together to overcome it. We are a strong country; we always have been and now is no different.
Sometimes things happen and it makes us evaluate our lives for the better. I think when all of this is done we will be the best we have ever been, so we need to do what is right – stay home, support our NHS and key workers and wait until we meet again.