Carly Ozard’s got somebody to love

If a deceased bisexual 40-something glam-rock icon and a straight, 20-something cabaret princess seem like an odd pairing, explain why to Carly Ozard, who’ll spend two evenings at The Rrazz Room sharing her revelry in and reverence for the talent and the legend of Queen’s Freddie Mercury.

A 7-year-old Ozard first experienced Mercury on the radio, “and it was like I woke up,” she says. “Was it a guy? Was it a girl? I had to know more.”

The already musically discerning pre-tween wasn’t exactly in love with the song — the anthem “We Will Rock You” — but she knew the voice was “insane,” and in a good way.

The fascination remained over the years. “I started singing along with his recordings and, even though I’m not a rocker, I found we had a similar range,” she says. She shared her passion with her parents, who also enjoyed Mercury’s style.

“A relationship was born,” says Ozard, who was drawn to Mercury’s diverse musical tastes. “He’s so crazy. He incorporated every kind of musical genre you can think of in one man from rap to rock to opera and more. I mean, ‘Seaside Rendezvous’ has a tap break in it.”

The ability to mix it up appealed to Ozard, who was beginning to resist the operatic vocal path she was on in school. “I was being told you could only be one thing and that being an opera singer was the only correct use of my talent.”

Of course, Ozard rebelled. She moved from her Belmont home to San Francisco’s Castro district. She appeared in musicals with 42nd Street Moon and the Lamplighters; and she studied cabaret at the feet of divas like Andrea Marcovicci.

For the last few years, Ozard has been building a smart body of work. She’s collaborated with prime local talent like Tom Orr and Barry Lloyd, creating clever and very personal shows like “Bitter and Be Gay!” about the foibles of dating men who turn out to make better girlfriends than spouses, and “Bewitched, Bothered and Bipolar.”

If she had a wish to be granted, it would be to open a venue here in which emerging artists could hone their craft.

“There needs to be a place where people can gain the experience with things like lighting and sound and performance to be ready to play a place like the Rrazz Room,” she says. “If you know any angels who want to fund this, send them my way!”

IF YOU GO
Carly Ozard

Where: Rrazz Room, Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason St., San Francisco
When: 10:30 p.m. Oct. 22-23
Tickets: $20 to $30
Contact: (866) 468-3399; www.therrazzroom.com

artsCarly OzardentertainmentNEPOther Arts

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