To round out Pride month this year, we rounded up some questions for DMV native and Drag Diva, KC Cambrel - also known as KC B. Yonce! KC chats with us about the best way to celebrate Pride this year, when he feels most beautiful and his summer color palette.
photo by Daniel S. Ruben
KC, you're really able to transform into a version of the Queen B herself. We must know the story behind your drag name!
KC has been my nickname since middle school and Beyoncé is my go-to Diva...so KC B. Yoncé was born! I also used to dress up as Beyoncé every Halloween for years, but in 2017 I really started taking it seriously. I was in the Pride parade that year and received such great feedback that I decided to give it a real shot. Since then, I started performing in various drag shows and haven't looked back.
The Capital Pride Festival was unfortunately cancelled this year, but that doesn't mean we aren't celebrating the LGBTQ community. What's been your favorite way to celebrate and participate in Pride this year?
I was actually booked to perform on the main stage at the Pride Festival but since the event was cancelled, I think it's important to celebrate the origins of Pride which is activism. I've been marching and trying to educate myself more about LGBTQ rights as well as the Black Lives Matter movement.
That sounds like the perfect way to celebrate. Recently, SCOTUS ruled that a landmark civil rights law would protect gay and transgender workers from workplace discrimination. How does that affect the community and how did you react to the news?
It's like...FINALLY! Isn't it insane that in 2020 you could be fired for your sexual orientation or gender identity? (Absolutely!) It's a huge win - especially for our Transgender community who still face job and housing discrimination disproportionately.
How else can we be supportive allies to the LGBTQ community?
Support Local LGBTQ talent! Support virtual Drag Shows and LGBTQ owned businesses. You can also donate to local organizations that directly help the community such as Casa Ruby or Whitman Walker Clinic.
In light of the tragic instances of police brutality and a renewed focus on social progress, is there anything you'd like to share about your experiences as a member of the Black community and the LGBTQ community?
It's been very intense coming to terms with my place in the world as a black man and a member of the LGBTQ community. I finally see the importance of celebrating both my blackness and my queerness.
When do you have the most confidence and feel the most beautiful?
After crushing a performance and the crowd reacts accordingly!
Tell us about your most memorable drag experience.
I was featured on the popular TV show Schitt's Creek in the finale episode. As a huge fan, it was an honor meeting the cast and being interviewed by the producers. I didn't think they'd actually use my clip in the show!
How do you prepare to take the stage as KC B. Yoncé?
I'm a Virgo so I usually plan out what I'm performing a few days in advance. I listen to whatever songs I'm performing on repeat until I know every word! Day of, it usually takes me 2-3 hours to get ready depending on how intricate the makeup or hairstyle is for that night's look. I have my signature Beyoncé look, but I've definitely been branching out more recently!
What color palettes are you into this season?
I love metallic golds, deep peach, oranges, taupe and plum. Those are great summer colors for me. My go-to lip colors are deep reds and purples because they work best with my complexion, but I love a pink lip when I can pull it off.
SHOP KC'S PICKS:
PYT Day to Night Palette is a perfect collection of warm toned shadows with two base shades, three matte shades and three shades with a little shimmer.
TMF Vegan Lips in shade Cara gives you that bright pop of pink - just in time for summer. This highly pigmented matte lipstick has nourishing ingredients like jojoba oil, rose oil and avocado oil.
Who are some of your inspirations in the LGBTQ community?
Marsha P. Johnson is a gay/trans activist and icon who has inspired me to be more active in the community. I'm also a big fan of Billy Porter and Janelle Monae who have recently seen mainstream success by being true to themselves.
Thank you KC for sharing your experiences and story with us! You can keep up with KC on the 'gram at @kcbyonce.