Outrageous outfits? Check. Elaborate makeup? Check. Known as Gaga? Check. A Pinellas County woman may not be one of the biggest pop stars on the planet, but there’s something 81-year-old Gloria Walz has on Lady Gaga: She’s been using the Gaga name for close to a quarter of a century.
Walz, a community volunteer and writer for her community newsletter, has been performing as a clown named Gaga at Pinellas County area churches and nursing homes for 24 years, according to WTSP in St. Petersburg, Fla.
“Now that Lady Gaga is using it, my friends say, ‘You ought to sue her,’” she said, referring to the coincidental use of a name Walz has performed under. “I said ‘No, no no.’”
Her lips and nose is ruby red, matching her cheeks, which has the makeup resembling oversized commas. Vertical blue lines are above and below both of her eyes. Her multicolored, puffy shirt with designs of stars, stripes, and plaid is complemented by her baggy red bucket hat. She wears a pin that simply says, “Gaga,” in red.
Walz’s time at the clown school offered by her local church allowed her to figure out what she wanted to do: Bring happiness to others.
“That’s me, this is me inside here,” she said. “This is Gaga.”