In their debut with the B Street Theatre, Kevin Kantor plays Miss Anorexia Nervosa, a talented young drag queen who challenges Georgia McBride. Artistic Associate Sean Patrick Nill met with Kevin to talk about the show, drag queens and more.
Where are you from?
I am from Denver by way of Chicago, but I’m currently based in New York.
What’s the earliest time you can recall drag or drag queens?
I, like many a young queer boy, wore out the VHS tape of Peter Pan starring Mary Martin in the titular role. I’d say that was probably my earliest memory of and definitive precursor to my affinity for challenging the notion of what gender should or can be. My first experience with watching live drag as performance was growing up going to the bars in Boystown in Chicago.
You’ve done this show at other theatres? What’s it like to perform the play again?
It’s been a wonderful experience to rediscover this character with a new family and in a new space. So much of a drag persona can be built around their fabulous wardrobe, so I must tip my wig cap to Gina, our costume designer, who has me feeling simply beautiful. And I truly love playing this character. I’m always excited to be playing queer characters, complex, three-dimensional queer characters who get to survive their own stories and celebrate their existence. She has hard-fought battle scars, and I love being able to showcase that you can be resilient but not at the cost of your humanity.
What are your impressions of the city of Sacramento?
I can’t wait until we’re open and I can actually do some exploring, but thus far I’ve had a wonderful time at my four main hangs: the theatre, Urban Fitness, the Safeway at Alhambra, and the Starbucks on N and 26th. (Maybe don’t run this answer haha.)
Why is this show relevant in 2018?
This show is truly for everyone and it is a celebration of joy—more specifically, I believe, an invitation for everyone to celebrate queer joy and chosen family. The Legend of Georgia McBride is a show so full of love and light and it actively welcomes people who may not consider themselves part of or initiated in the queer community, and says ‘We love you. We want you here. We want you to celebrate with us,’ while also realizing and paying respect to the hardships that the queer community had to overcome to earn this space, and at time, fight for our lives.”
Who are some of your favorite drag queens working today?
Sasha Velour is one of my top queer icons, hands down. She’s a culturally-conscious, politically-engaged, wears gag-worthy fashion. She’s a queen we need in times like these.
If you personally had a drag persona, what would be her name?
Ana Tevka, a slutty Jewish shtetl bubbe that lip syncs to Jewish Holiday standard and smells like Werther’s Originals hard candies.
Come see Kevin play Miss Rexy in The Legend of Georgia McBride, running now until December 9. Tickets available at B Street Theatre.