For Kylie Sonique Love, it was simply about “pushing herself to her greatness.”
The season 2 contestant of "RuPaul’s Drag Race" (also the first-ever contestant to come out as trans) entered the "RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars 6" competition ready to move herself out of her comfort zone and with a hilarious Snatch Game of Love turn and dynamic runway looks, Love showed that she is the multi-faceted performer that she always wanted to be. I sat down to talk with Kylie about her "Drag Race All Stars" experience, the music she has been working on, and for Kylie, why drag is simply “what helped me experience who I am as a person.”
Michael Cook: Congratulations on being crowned the winner of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars 6! How does it feel?
Kylie Sonique Love: Thank you ... It feels right (laughs). It feels really good and I feel so grateful.
MC: Apart from being part of the Christmas special, you have come back and proven yourself to RuPaul, your competitors, and yourself. What was it like coming back as whole new performers in a whole new game?
KSL: For years I had an idea that it would be so great to go back and show them who I am and all of these things. During the time that we were filming All Stars 6 though, it was during the pandemic. I hadn't done drag in months. I didn't think that I would ever get to do it again. Being called to go back and do Drag Race, it was a blessing. For me, I thought "let's make the most of it" because I may never get to do this again; I may not ever get to step foot in another club and do drag. I just lived in the moment and wanted to have fun doing it and make the most of it; to not get caught up in the bullshit. I went have a good time and be one hundred percent myself; I thought it might be my last time doing drag again. Something in me...I feel like a whole new person. Which is so weird, because I already thought that I was. You only live once, but you can live twice if you do it the way that you want to do it.
MC: You were the first trans woman to come out as trans from "RuPaul's Drag Race." What is it like to be the person that laid that groundwork that many contestants since you have followed? Were you always just that type of a brave performer?
KSL: I didn't realize what I was doing at the time, because it was a scary time to come out. Trans people were not on television and they were made fun of when they were. They even made fun of themselves because that was the only way to be seen. My trans-ness was so new to me also. I didn't know how to speak for the trans people, and I just spoke from my heart. Now there is so much more could say about it, but then I just really was trying to explain to RuPaul and everyone how I was feeling on the inside. It was so liberating and it was the kick in the ass that I needed to push through to the next journey in my life. Drag is something that helped me experience who I am as a person. It just feels really good that somebody has to open the door for those other people to come in, and I am from the South, so I use my hospitality (laughs)! Get on in here everybody! It feels really good to be that person, and somebody had to do it. There are other people before me that did it also.
MC: Speaking of Dolly Parton, did your Southern roots help you inhabit Dolly Parton for Snatch Game Of Love in a way that we have never seen before. Do you think that is fair to say?
KSL: Absolutely. It was something in me that I didn't know was there, but now looking back it's like "this was always with you." Growing up around the people that I grew up around, I knew that I lived in a house with a bunch of people and that we looked alike, but we were nothing alike. And the minute they know that you're different, they're gonna treat you like anyone that they are racist or prejudice against. So it's scary to live in a home with people who don't understand people who aren't like them. I've gagged myself, honestly, because I didn't know who I was going to do on Snatch Game. Dolly came to me and I kept seeing signs of Dolly so I thought I would listen to the universe. That is something that I am proud of; I have learned to listen to the universe and not try to go against it. I talked to my mom before I left and she said "you sound like Dolly Parton." It was like "perfect!"
My backup was Miley Cyrus actually. We're friends though. and I thought that if I were to go and bomb this ... (laughs). I thought Dolly be fun to do. When I saw Miley she asked if I had done her for Snatch Game and I said, "No, I did Dolly, I did good and you'll be proud of me" (laughs).
MC: You have started releasing varied and different types of music. Is music now something you want to dive into full force?
KSL: Yes! I've been writing songs since I can remember. As a kid I would always make up songs after I heard them on the radio and I would remix them and make up my own words. I was really shy also, which is silly because I would sing in church. When I was in military school, they had a choir and I would sing in that and everyone would laugh. A part of me shut down from singing in front of people and I would just write songs and sing to myself. Music kind of helped me accept my voice over the years, and writing has helped me to tell my story. Music is something that I really want to do and it is something that is universal and can bring everyone together, whether they understand what is being said or not. It can make you feel good and you could learn something from it, or you can just have fun with it. I think I want to work with more artists and show people this go-round what I am made of. Music is definitely something that I am looking forward to doing in the future. I have a new song out called "Complete Me" and the video is out now. It is a different vibe than "Do It Like Dolly" and "Gooey."
MC: You are now part of the Drag Race Hall Of Fame. What do you think it was that pushed you over the edge and helped you snatch the crown?
KSL: I don't look at it as me being "better" than anyone else there. I don't think anyone deserved it more than the other. I think we all worked really hard and we all had different aspirations going into the show. I think for me it was the cherry on top of the experience and it is an opportunity to be a voice that people can listen to. Whether I won or not, I am still going to work hard, pursue acting, do music, and share my voice and still pursue everything. At the end of the day we all worked really hard to be there and I am grateful. It is the cherry on top of all of the hard work and all of the personal challenges that I made for myself when I was there. There were plenty of times that I said I could do it like "this" but people would expect that. I wanted to push myself so I could grow while I was there and push myself to my greatness. I wanted to go with what I know, but push myself more. I did an entire male character on the show, and I acted; that was something new for me. I dressed up as Dolly Parton, which was new to me. There were so many things that I have never done before and I did them my way. Winning that crown is just a blessing, the cherry on top of a wonderful experience that I had.
MC: When does Kylie Sonique Love feel herself?
KSL: I feel like I am always being myself, that is one thing that I have promised myself. I am the worst liar ever and I am so much better as a person just being honest, although something I can be too honest about. At the end of the day though, no one can say that I was lying and there is nothing more uncomfortable than feeling like that. I think just being myself and being as real as I can be and speaking my truth. Listening to other people also helps too; listen and live in the moment. Live in each moment and don't get ahead of yourself.
Follow Kylie Sonique Love on Instagram @xosonique.
Check out the other interviews at All Stars 6 homepage.