Meet drag king and BRICKS Voices cover star Landon Cider who uses comedy, drama, horror, political satire to show kings can reign just as fierce as queens.
IMAGES Courtesy of Landon Cider
How can we foster a sense of community while in isolation?
I can only speak through my experience, and as a full-time performer my passion is on stage, that’s where I connect the most to local communities and when I travel. So without that access, I’ve switched to digital platforms where I’ve been able to maintain a connection of entertaining people even from my living room. Bringing joy and distraction from the ugliness has always been my favourite part of drag, and figuring out how to do that digitally has helped me stay connected.
What does the word queer mean to you?
It’s an umbrella that kaleidoscopes the already beautiful colours of our rainbow.
What is your earliest memory of the queer community?
Watching Queer as Folk and being confusedAF.
If there is one thing you could say to oppressors of queer people, what would you say?
People who shame people for love don’t deserve my energy
Who inspires you?
Strong women around the world, even those who don’t realise their strength yet..I see you. And the memory of my mom. She was a badass.
Representing a subculture within a subculture always comes with heavy responsibilities but I could only do my drag and do it my best. And frankly, I’m damn proud of myself.
Why do you think that there isn’t as much representation of drag kings in the mainstream as there is for drag queens?
In two words – historic misogyny. Kings and male impersonators have been around just as long and in some cultures even longer than our queen counterparts. But men are always the glorified artists and given the credit that both women, men and those in-between deserve. Women have always been artists, engineers, hunters, scientists, architects, providers and anything else you can think of. But men hold the pen to the pages of history books and write women out of them.
You were recently on Dragula where you won, what was that experience like for you, especially being the first king to win the competition?
It was truly a beautiful nightmare come true and overwhelming in the most magical of ways. The outpouring of love, support and stories of inspiration have soaked deep into my spirit. I don’t entirely reflect our massive sea of kings because there are artists out there doing things I could never dream of doing! Representing a subculture within a subculture always comes with heavy responsibilities but I could only do my drag and do it my best. And frankly, I’m damn proud of myself.
What do you think about the mainstreaming of queer culture?
All mainstreams have always been fed by small streams. everything and everyone started out as something special and it just takes others to take notice to feed it into the main. I think the importance of getting popular/well-known as an underrepresented artist is the responsibility of reminding people of where we came from. The mainstream brings more life into the surroundings, but we still need to nourish and nurture to continue its growth.
Are you optimisitc about the future for queer people?
I’m always optimistic and recgnise we have the power to create our destinies. Humans, queer or not, now have more representation then ever before! At the touch of a button youth can see themselves in those standing out, tall and loud. And that’s the future I’m proud to be a part of.