South Florida is a vibrant place to live, with lots of colorful entertainers, and no group makes it more fun than our drag queens/female impersonators. Therefore we here at Hotspots decided to start a new column that will feature one queen every week, so that the community gets to know them a little bit better.
It was my pleasure to pick Latrice Royale for the inaugural column, as Latrice and I have been friends for almost 20 years.
What was the first drag show you saw? Tell me about the experience.
The very first drag show I ever saw was Kenny Kerr’s Boylesque show in Las Vegas. I think I was maybe 16 years old. I was completely baffled that this was a man looking like a woman. It opened my eyes to a whole new world of possibilities.
When did you decide you wanted to do drag and when did you realize it would be a profession?
Well, I was dared into doing drag in the first place. And after winning the Drag Wars Competition at the World Famous Copa in Fort Lauderdale after only my second attempt, I figured I had a knack for it. It wasn’t until about four years later that I transitioned into drag as a full-time career.
Who is your drag mother, and who is your favorite queen other than your drag mother and why?
I never had a drag mother “proper,” however I have claimed Tiffany Arieagus and she has finally announced me officially as her daughter. I guess I must have finally done something right! [laughs] My favorite queen other than Mother Tiffany is, hands down, Bianca del Mother Effin’ Rio. She is clearly the smartest business woman out of the RPDR franchise, and DEFINITELY out of the winners. Both Tiffany and Bianca are professionals who exemplify the definition of artistry and business, and that’s why they are who they are to me.
What’s your favorite number to perform and why?
I have several favorites, but where I get my ENTIRE life is performing gospel. I love taking the children to church. It’s food for the soul and they get to experience something that they never would have expected in a nightclub.
What’s the best thing that has happened to you in drag?
I got engaged while in drag in front of what felt like the whole world at Seattle Pride. Now the video of the proposal has more views than my music video!!! It’s like, that’s nice, but also like, well damn! [laughs] It was a really special moment and people really connected with it and got some joy when they needed it the most. I was really happy to get to share it in such a special way. THANKS JUJUBEE!!!
What sets you apart from other queens?
For starters, I’ve always been the type of person who marches to the beat of their own drummer. I’ve never exactly fit in, which frees me from feeling the need to TRY to fit in. I’m “Large and in Charge”—for real for real! “Chunky yet Funky”—I think I move as well or better than any big girl in the game. And I’m “Bold and Beautiful”—Latrice embraces all her curves and swerves. But most of all I pride myself on spreading positivity throughout the world in these trying times. I don’t see enough of THAT in this industry.
What does the future hold?
My future is bright and unpredictably exciting. I’m booked further ahead than I ever have been in my entire career, and I have a whole new set of dreams and ambitions. Doing these cabaret shows has really opened me up to other avenues of entertainment, and I look forward to being able to touch people more directly as I continue to grow as an entertainer.