Every year, so many performers come through the nightlife of New York City, and every once in a while, a performer has what I call “stardust.” Kimmi Moore has that rare quality of smoldering sex appeal and raw talent, and from Fire Island to stages like Headroom in Jersey City, NJ and Playhouse Bar in New York City, has been delivering that and more as one of the premier performers in Manhattan today. I sat down with this dynamic member of the Haus of Assassins to chat about her surprising beginnings in the world of drag, the work it took to elevate herself and her craft, and how working with her sisters in the Haus of Assassins have given her much-needed inspiration in the past year.
Michael Cook: Let’s start at the beginning; how did Kimmi Moore start doing drag and when did you decide New York City would be the place you would make your mark?
Kimmi Moore: I had been doing drag all throughout college at school and the gay bars. Straight out of college, I had a job opening in social work, but something in me subconsciously said no and I moved to New York City. I waited tables and worked on drag; I really didn’t decide anything. Things just fall into place when they are meant to. It was only recently that I became comfortable with New York being my artistic home.
MC: So many New York City dolls have laid the groundwork for you to perform, true legends. Who are some of your favorite queens that have come before you and why?
KM: I only really got to know the NYC scene starting in 2015. I remember being inspired by Peppermint the most; someone who had taken drag to a higher level. I actually heard about her from someone who doesn’t even follow drag. Miss Fame and Petrilude, I watched on YouTube. I truly believe Miss Fame changed drag a lot.
MC: You have accomplished what many strive for, and have truly made a name for yourself in New York City; what advice do you have for the kids that will come behind you?
KM: Trust the process. Things fall into place when they are meant to. You don’t create a fully realized persona overnight. Allow yourself room to learn, grown, mess up, change. Be humble, but very confident in what you do. My biggest piece of advice is enjoy the ride and don’t rush it. Every year is important in developing who you are as an entertainer. I’m lucky to have the Haus of Assassins that have contributed to my development as a person and artist.
MC: Drag Race has given many New York City girls a whole different kind of legacy; what are your thoughts on the show? Any thoughts on taking a crack at that crown yourself?
KM: I think Drag Race really helped to launch gay culture into the mainstream and gave opportunity in a brand new way for drag queens. I love the show and I love the queens on the show. I do sometimes wish it was a little less reality tv and a little more competition. I may one day take a crack at the crown, but I’m confident that I can be even more successful than I am now with or without it.
MC: You and Boudoir LeFleur are two members of The Haus of Assassins; what is it like to be considered one half of one of the hottest drag duos in the city? What does it take to be a member of that Haus?
KM: I’m so thankful that I was able to come up in the scene with Boudoir. We really used each others strengths to build what we have. Our chemistry was genuine and our growth as a haus is due to selflessness, supportiveness and love for each other. Each member is individually so strong and unique, but with the powers combined creates something so special. Special thanks to Kamilla Kockman, Nick Gaga and Boudoir LeFleur for contributing to who I am and keeping me inspired.
MC: Playhouse is a stunning new space for performers of New York City. What is it like helping christen that stage as one of the headliners?
KM: Playhouse is everything I’ve wanted since moving to New York. I’m so honored to be on the most beautiful stage in NYC nightlife. Being on stage is therapy for me and to be underneath those Madison Square Garden lights is a dream. A special thanks to Playhouse!
MC: How have you stayed creatively fueled and inspired during this time?
KM: I haven’t….Just kidding! But it has been incredibly hard. I used the quarantine as a time to work on projects I wouldn’t have without it. That was a little bit healing for me. Then later on, the Assassins just tried to motivate each other with projects. Nick Gaga really pushed us to work on the ‘Sweet Melody’ music video replica and in the darkest time we went viral on YouTube. It shows that in dark times, you can still make magic. With all that being said, it is still very hard to stay inspired but you have to take care of yourself and remind yourself what makes you happy, even for just a few moments. And some of the time those moments will become something even greater. One step at a time.
MC: What do you absolutely celebrate the most about yourself and why?
KM: This is a beautiful question and almost made me cry… I am really honest with myself. And I have always been really brave and independent. This year, I’ve learned more about myself than I ever have. Isn’t it weird that you can learn about yourself?.. Anyway, I love me (most of the time) and I encourage everyone to find out more about themselves and to work on finding true happiness. And, therapy is great. Talk it out.
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