Drag superstar BenDeLaCreme opens up about love and loss

Behind the Drag aims to showcase the off-stage lives of some of America’s most talented drag queens. The intimate series gives us the opportunity to meet the people behind our favorite over-the-top drag queens.

BenDeLaCreme is a drag queen from Seattle currently performing in Provincetown, Massachusetts who finds peace in love and life through drag.

Her headlining show, “Ready to Be Committed,” is inspired by her partner Gus proposing and features a mix of comedy and storytelling rather than the traditional lip-syncing and dancing you see in drag.

“The proposal was a complete surprise and something that sort of manifested childhood dreams of mine, that as a queer person, I never necessarily thought I’d have when I was young,” Ben said.

“I know that I feel loved by Gus, because he is committed every day to figuring out how we are going to be the best partners to each other, and that kind of dedication is really, really difficult to anything, let alone another human being,” he added.

Ben had a difficult childhood, from being “an overtly queer kid from a very young age” and losing his biggest supporter, his mother, at the age of 13. He grew up feeling somewhat unaccepted by the people around him. So, when he discovered drag, he felt that he found his purpose. 

On stage, BenDeLaCreme is optimistic and upbeat, almost to a fault, and Ben often uses the character to talk to the audience about more difficult things.

“I do consider [drag] something spiritual and something sacred. I really think that drag is bigger than just performance. I can’t believe the life that I get to live,” he said. “And when I think about going back in time, and telling that 13-year-old me, ‘Like oh my god, if you stick it out, this is the life that you’re gonna get.’ Now, I get the opportunity to say that to a generation of 13-year-old me’s.”

“BenDeLaCreme is the best of me, distilled into a fictional character, who can be all good qualities.”

If you enjoyed reading this article, you may also want to check out this article on Big Freedia, a New Orleans performer who made bounce music mainstream.

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