Contributing Author: Alex Powers
For our new “Road to All Stars Season 2? series, Dragaholic is getting reacquainted with some Drag Race fan favorites who have a serious shot at a coveted spot in the RuPaul’s All Stars Drag Race Season 2 cast. We’re kiki-ing with glamazons, dolls, fishy foes and maybe even a few shady apes. RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 6 contestant, fan-favorite and the signature Puerto Rican queen of the season April Carrion was able to talk with us about her background, life since leaving the show and her All Stars Season 2 ambitions. Don’t forget to check back each week for new interviews in this series; we’ve got a lot of amazing interviews that we can’t wait to share with you!
The Road to All Stars Season 2: Full Interview List
The Road to All Stars Season 2 Interview: April Carrion
Dragaholic: Thank you again for speaking with me today. Not sure if you realized this, however you were the recipient of Dragaholic’s “Cutest Boy” award for Drag Race Season 6!
April Carrion: No, really?!
D: Yes, congratulations! One thing the fans wanted to know is, how is your love life at the moment? Do you have a boyfriend?
AC: I do have a boyfriend. We will be together four years in about a week!
D: From the show, it was easy to see that you and Adam Lambert shared a bit of chemistry. Have you seen him since and, if so, what came out of it?
AC: I have not seen him since the show. I tweeted him but he didn’t respond—that little whore! (laughs)—but hopefully when I do end up seeing him he’ll remember who I was!
D: What got you started with drag? Was there a particular queen or experience that prompted you to take it up?
AC: It’s so funny because when I first heard about drag I didn’t really want to do it…even though people said I look feminine or whatever. But then I entered art school and through art school, I was exposed to it more and fell in love, not with the drag queens but with the conceptual aspect of it, being able to not only transcend my own gender but also transform into anything I wanted to be: boy, girl, or anything in-between. I fell in love with it and decided to enter a little pageant being held on the other side of the island. I decided to document [becoming a drag queen] in a series of art projects—drawing, photography, sculptures, videos—I only wanted to do [drag] for the project itself, without doing it again. I ended up winning [the pageant], which was really fun and unexpected. After that, people kept asking me to do it more and I said no at first. However they kept asking and asking so eventually I was just like, ‘we’ll see how this goes!’ and I think it’s gone pretty well so far!
D: It absolutely has! So would you say the visual and illusionary aspect of drag that brought you into it?
AC: Not so much the visual aspect alone. I am a very visual person, however, it was more the conceptual part that I fell in love with. Through expressing myself, and becoming anything I want to be, I feel free.
D: You definitely have a lot of versatility in your style. One look that a lot of people loved, which was shown on the Drag Race reunion special—the “black and white” one with the green hair and makeup—was very popular because many of the fans could not even recognize you! Do you like to surprise people with your looks?
AC: Yeah, definitely. I really don’t rely on just being fishy or pretty, because I do want to add more substance to what I do, and I put a lot of thought into each look that I put out. I really like to keep people guessing and experiment with different things: fun makeup, fun hair, fun costumes. It’s just cool!
D: Have you had any haters on social media? If so, how do you go about dealing with them?
AC: I don’t think I’ve experienced too much hate online…usually if I see a snotty comment I’ll just ignore it. You can’t do anything about things like that. It’s not like were all $100 bills, in the end not everybody is going to love you. It’s important to always look to the positive side of things and focus on the people you love and the people that love you. That’s why, at meet-and-greets, I love taking time to interact with my fans—hugging them, talking to them, taking pictures—because I really do appreciate the people who believe in me and my work.
D: Is it difficult being such a big drag star in the U.S. and commuting from Puerto Rico?
AC: No, not really. Being from Puerto Rico is cool because you have the flair and the culture to take with you. It’s been a little bit—not difficult, but a lot of work, absorbing all of this new culture in the U.S., but it’s worth it. I always try to learn from new people and experiences.
D: Are there any U.S. cities in particular that you love or would love to see?
AC: I’ve been to a bunch of cities that I love so far, however I really loved San Francisco, I love New York—but I think that’s a given—and I really want to see Seattle.
D: Do you have any Tee worth spilling on All Stars Season 2? When will it be filmed? Have any announcements gone out for casting?
AC: I bet you have more information about it that than I do, because I don’t really know anything! I think the opportunity to do All Stars would be super fun so I’m just promoting the hell out of it. I don’t know when or if it’s even going to happen. I would like it to happen though, and to be able to go and represent both the Puerto Rican and the Latin community.
D: We loved your runway look photos that you would tweet each week of broadcast following your leave from Drag Race. What inspired you to do that?
AC: Well, after leaving the show I was a bit depressed for a while. I felt I had left too early, had disappointed all of the people rooting for and believing in me, so, I figured I should show them and everyone else that I was well prepared for the competition and had what it took to be a contender for the crown. It was a release in a lot of ways, it allowed me to not only show my fans my looks but also gave others a chance to get to know me and think ‘Hey, that’s an interesting queen!’
D: Those were awesome. Every one you put up I thought, hey, she could have won that runway!
AC: Thank you, and yeah I had many people saying the same thing. Honestly I was surprised that another queen hadn’t thought of it before.
D: Yeah, now anyone who does it after you will look like a copycat!
AC: Yeah, right? (laughs)
D: Why do you feel it is important for you to be cast in All Stars Season 2, aside from being able to represent your country and culture?
AC: It’s important in that I’ll have the chance to redeem myself… people would have the chance to see what they didn’t see on season six. I’ve grown a lot from this experience—I didn’t always do drag every single day, after all—and it’s been fun. You learn new tricks and ideas each time you do drag, and I feel I’ve learned a lot. For example, I was in San Francisco recently and saw some of the weirdest drag I’ve ever seen. However, I embrace and appreciate things like that because it expands the possibilities for how I do my own drag. I’m prepared to show the world that I’m ready to snatch the crown and be the first Puerto Rican to do so!
D: So you feel the personal growth you’ve gained from the experience so far will be an asset to you on All Stars Season 2?
AC: Definitely, I think everybody [from the show] has grown. I’m really critical about what I do. I’m constantly trying to pinpoint things I can improve and expand on. I’m ready for this!
D: Are there any queens from the show—including your season—that you feel should or will be cast in All Stars Season 2?
AC: Well, I just don’t really care, bring them all! (laughs) I obviously want to compete with the best of the best—it’s called All Stars for a reason, the competition has to be fierce—so bring ‘em on!
D: Any unfinished business from your season? Things you would have wanted to say to your fans, etc.
AC: No, except that I do love my fans and I’m really grateful for them. The fans gave me power when I didn’t feel I had it. When I was eliminated and feeling down on myself, it was my fans who kept me motivated. In each city I visit, there are so many Papilokos (fans) telling me encouraging things, like “You left way too early, I was mad!” which was really uplifiting to me.
D: Upon leaving the show, who was your personal pick for the winner?
AC: Bianca was definitely a strong contender to me, and Courtney because of how polished she was. Also, I really thought Ben would get top 3. She really knew what she wanted and I could tell she was in her element as a performer. She had a fully developed character, too, which I love in a drag queen.
D: Any big events coming up on your schedule that you’d like us to promote?
AC: I don’t really know my schedule (laughs) I’ll be in a lot of cities and pride events coming up. I’m planning a huge event in Puerto Rico but I don’t have a date for it yet… it’s still in the works.