Dahlia Divine Moore has been a drag performer for 6 months! The first time I saw Dahlia perform she was the opening number for Alaska. And girl she came out singing and OH MY GOD she blew me away! She is a proud member of the Moore family, and her drag mother, Jaymelah Moore is a queen you will hear a lot about in upcoming interviews with local queens. Jaymelah’s own interview will be coming soon, but in speaking with Dahlia you can see just how much of an impact Jaymelah has had on her career to date.
Cara Coronado began performing in drag at the age of 21 and has been performing for almost five years. She didn’t have a slow process breaking into the drag scene – she took her dance skills and got attention immediately and was cast into a show and has been going strong since. She works at many clubs and acts at a hostess for her own show. When asked about her hosting, she showed her sly, humorous side and said she doesn’t like the same old same old. “I want to know who would you choose in a bar fight? Like Beyoncé or Cardi B? Cause that’s the real T you guys want to know! So yeah. I love hosting. It’s fun. I never hosted on Grindr when I was single. Never. I’d always go back to their place, but…”
Drag Adventures: What is your drag name and what is its origin? Did you have any previous drag names that you’re willing to share?
Dahlia Divine Moore: Girl, I’ve had too many to count! My favorite drag queen is Trixie Mattel, so my first drag name was Tallulah Mattel, and I hate myself for it. Then I got a drag mom and I changed it, then it was Ophelia Ova. Then Jaymelah (Moore) rescued me and it’s now Dahlia Divine Moore. The last name is the family name, and for the first name, I see the women of this family and I wanted to honor all these women, especially Monique because I never got to meet her. I wanted to have a strong, bitch name, so that’s where mine came from.
Cara Coronado: Mine was from Craigslist, just kidding. I was almost Alexandra McQueen. Awful. But I was very thirsty, attention seeking power bottom at the time, and I was obsessed with Lana Del Rey. I liked how she got her name and how it was very 60s inspired and how she wanted it to sound exotic. Then the Coronado came from the Hotel Del Coronado, which I stumbled across because of “Del Rey”. I used to think the hotel was extremely beautiful on the outside but haunted on the inside. I was also big about the first letters of the first and last names needing to be the same, so I came up with Cara from one of my favorite models at the time, Cara DeLevigne because she was stunning but not in your average way. I pronounce it Cara (K-air-uh) because I’m white, and Cara in Spanish means face and Coronado in Spanish means crown, so, a crowned face. I got so much shit for my drag name because everybody was like, it sounds too girly.
DDM: How do you get more draggy than Cara Coronado?
CC: Well now, but back then you had to be like a funny drag name, and I was like no! And watch it’s gonna be a name on everyone’s lips, and sure enough, that name’s been booked and busy ever since, so…
DA: What was it that got you to start doing drag? Who are your drag inspirations?
DDM: I’m the fucking idiot asshole that has a Trixie Mattel necklace on. But I have a weird relationship with drag race, I mean I’d never seen a full season of Drag Race until like All-Stars 2, but honestly, it was Jaymelah. The first drag show, you (Cara) were in it. It was you, Naudia (Skye), Jaymelah, it was…
DDM: yeah, it was Katya. That was the first drag show I ever saw. The first drag queen I ever saw was Jaymelah.
DA: (I made a gesture about the tiny hands – this video shows Katya interacting with Dahlia!)
DDM: Yeah bitch you remember.
CC: That was you?
DDM: Yes. Fucking Jaymelah walked out and I was like, Oh my God! Fuck! And I was literally like fuck me up! You (Cara) did the fucking 90s mix with all the theme songs, and I was like, Oh my God! Holy Shit!
CC: That sounds like me.
DDM: Yeah, you did the damn thing! And I gave you money.
CC: Do you want it back?
DDM: Yes. Clearly, my investment didn’t go anywhere.
CC: Never (Laughs). What was the question again?
DDM: Oh yeah, my drag inspirations. My first drag mom I actually met her at this show. I didn’t know women could do drag. So I went to one of her drag shows and was like, Holy Shit I can do this. She started to show me the way, but then when I met Jaymelah and started to get to know her she was like, nope, you’re mine! And now I’m a Moore! Jaymelah is iconic to me.
With her I was I was like I’m done. I’m done, dusted, sign my name on the line. Aja, I’m a huge fan of her aesthetic and where she’s taking her career. Trixie because she’s funny and she doesn’t do the typical like oh I want to dance. Like I can’t do that, I’m fat as fuck. I’m not gonna go out there and dance and break my hip. I’m gonna be funny because that’s literally all I know how to do.
CC: When are you gonna start that?
DDM: I’m thinking about it soon.
CC: Oh, okay. Just wondering.
CC: I used to sneak into the Xotica show in Fresno, which is a show I’m part of when I was underage. And I saw The Dollhouse show. Back when Drag Race was on Netflix in America I watched season 3 I was like what is this? I’d always been told drag was just like weird and to watch I was just like, this is so cool! I was a weird ass kid. I used to pretend to be Prince and Michael Jackson and perform as them in my room, up until I was like 16 years old. And I had a set list, I had costume changes, which is basically what drag is now for me. But this was my chance to be Beyonce for a night.
CC: You go on here you’re a star. But I was in Fresno and a lot of the queens were doing tired-ass performances. I was like I’m gonna show them what a dancing queen can do, ’cause I’ve been dancing since I was younger. It was more like, I’m gonna show you all up! It was like gonna be a one and done thing, but I was like oh bitch, I’m gonna werk it out and show these girls, and here I am now. As far as inspirations, Raven, Trixie, Willam, Divine, Manila, Lady Gaga, Donatella Versace, Kim K, Bianca Jagger, and Sponge Bob. There’s a movie called the Queen, it’s from the 60s, and Crystal LaBeija’s one of my big inspirations too. And actually, Jaymelah and Deja Skye, funny story, someone who really inspired my drag, in the beginning, was Jaymelah. I followed her and was so shook by her stage presence. It inspired me 100% and I still give her credit to this day. She was more of an unofficial drag mom to me than my actual drag moms. (Which now I’m an orphan) (laughing)
DA: If you’re an AFAB queen, a drag king, or a transgender queen do you feel like you have had to work harder to be accepted, or has your local community welcomed you?
DDM: Absolutely. Absolutely 100%. I mean, I am AFAB, but I don’t identify that way anymore. I identify as non-binary, trans-masc, so it’s like I’m kind of here and drag is completely separate. It doesn’t matter what my gender is, I’m fucking you up, sis. Gimme your money. But it’s like, I can’t paint to be like pretty. I can’t do fish cause it’s like fish cause I’m already fish so it’s like…
CC: (gives her a look) who said that? Just kidding! I fuck with her all the time. (Dahlia cackles) No she is fishy.
DDM: So it’s like exploring new facets of that kind of art because it kind of becomes a completely different subsection of this art. It’s the performance of gender, so when you add that underlying layer, it’s just more, it’s just…Moore, ah, ah!
CC: Ha! Yeah, yeah! I mean, honestly, I’m just a drag queen but for the longest time, I had an issue with Drag Kings, (specifically) the males wanting to be drag kings. Because a lot of the time they would wear an outfit from forever 21 or H&M that didn’t fit right, had no appeal, and would walk around to a pitched down version of Adele. It was LAME, boring, and had no effort. As she said, I don’t give a fuck what you identify as, if you’re a drag queen, drag king, a pony, a, I don’t even know what this AFAB thing is?
DA: Assigned Female at Birth.
CC: Okay werk. No that’s actually hot though. But whatever you identify as, just be fierce. That’s what I like about her (Dahlia). She’s never been, “I’m just gonna do like what everyone else does,” no. She paints as hard as us, she works on her outfits as hard as us, she doesn’t go out there in jeans and a t-shirt and like, “what’s up?” Look at her, she’s sickening!
DDM: Thanks Mom. That’s the only nice thing she’ll ever say about me.
CC: Yeah, yeah. Did you get that on film?
DA: Do you fully tuck or use panty hose and prayer?
CC: Fully tuck. Well, it’s a mix of both. I use three gaffs, which is just nylon tops, the stretchy part, and a sock, and let my balls go up so they don’t peak out, but I guess with the tights they bring it in, so. You know at the end of the day if a ball comes out, they know I’m a man. I’m not Tatianna. No one’s like, “is she real or not?”
DA: How would you describe your style of drag?
DDM: Uhm, hey, that fat girl got in here, is she okay? Is she okay? (me and Cara cackling) That’s my style. Hey, that fat girl is kinda funny. Does she have a meet and greet? Does she have the wristband?
CC: My style, it’s a mixture. I love taking every part of drag. I’m very comedic obviously if you get to know me like I’m literally an idiot.
DDM: At Acid Betty on my snapchat I was literally like, this fucking idiot!
CC: Yeah it was like this beautiful image and you’re like ooh, body, and then I turned around and it’s like a Hitler mustache. But I love to mix camp and I love to mix glamour, you never know what you’re gonna get with me any time you see me. I love pageant drag but I’ll never do it. I guess one word you could use to describe me is, Iconic!
DA: Have you ever had a fan girl moment with a queen you’re working with and how do you deal with it?
DDM: I’m still trying to figure this out. For Alaska I had to like, It’s fucking Alaska. Okay. Hello Alaska. Now that I’m doing it more, and this is my third Ru girl show, I’m kind of figuring it out. I mean, I’m gonna cry when I meet Trixie, that’s just gonna happen, but I’m going to have to tell myself, she’s a human being.
CC: I fangirl in a weird sense. I’m really happy and excited that I’m meeting you. Alaska was one that a couple of times it was like, that’s her, cause Alaska is just so grand and she’s so like, she’s Alaska! The first time I ever fangirled though was with Raven, cause I was like, she’s gonna know I’m like copying her mug. Like she’s gonna clock me for everything, but she was super sweet. Katya was another one. I did fangirl meeting another queen, but I did not have a good experience (name withheld for the sake of the fans). That’s the opposite side of it, it’s like you fangirl, cause it’s like I’m so excited to meet you. Like Adore, that’s one that I was like, I’m so happy to meet you – the nicest person I’ve ever met in my entire life.
DA: I love her so much.
CC: Yeah! So nice. So humble, and so just like, she’s like your cousin, you know? But like, (this other one), I was so fan girling out to meet cause I loved her, but she was so rude. And to this day I still say maybe she was just in a bad mood, because trust me, I have days when I’m in a bad mood, so I’m giving her a chance to redeem herself. Because even if she was a bitch to me I still love her.
DDM: Regardless of what our day was like, we have to come in and pretend to be like, I’m a fucking drag queen, yes Gaga, and it’s like how many times have I already said that tonight?
CC: Because if you don’t people are gonna go like, you’re a bitch.
DDM: Like, “You’re rude!”
CC: So like, you always have to be on.
DA: Is your drag persona different from who you are, and if so in what ways?
DDM: I wish it was, but she’s fully not. I’m a cunt in drag and out of drag.
CC: Mine is a total 180. I’m the same in a sense, but I’m more reserved and quiet as a boy. Cara gives me that freedom to do whatever the fuck I want. She’s my superhero suit. But I struggle with anxiety that has a minor case of depression with it. So as a boy, I get anxious and I don’t really want to be out. But comedy-wise, I’m the same. I say the same shit as Brandon as I do as Cara. I don’t change. But as a boy though, if you get to know me. I’m probably worse. You’ll probably be like, I just want Cara.
DA: If you do jumping splits how long did it take you to perfect the move?
CC: (looks at Dahlia and laughs)
DDM: Uh, about 6 minutes (she doesn’t do them)
CC: I still don’t know how to do a full jumping split. I don’t want to. I do a Jazz split. But you just gotta go for it. If you hurt yourself you hurt yourself. If not, hurray for you.
DA: Do you choreograph or do you play it by ear?
DDM: I’ve never practiced a number. And that’s what’s exciting for me. If I go and plan it I’m trying to remember what I planned I’m trying to remember everything. I just go out and have fun, have a good time.
CC: Sometimes both. I’ve been in dance since I was 5, I’ve done musical theater, I danced at Disneyland. A lot of people don’t know that, I’m a Disney boy. For me I’ll sit there in my chair and like (mocks dance moves), and I go on stage and whatever happens happens. Like I have an idea, but unless it’s a group number where I have to choreograph obviously.
DA: Biggest Pet Peeve with Audience members?
DDM: Don’t fucking touch me!
CC: Not even that, lip-syncing during a number that’s not yours.
DDM: Or like trying to perform my number while I’m performing it. You can live and be like, yes, fuck it, but like don’t perform while I’m performing.
CC: Here’s my thing. If you’re performing while I’m performing, first off, I get that you’re in drag, I get that you’re here. You’re not booked. So don’t try to be booked. That’s oh, that’s my biggest pet peeve. I’m known for dealing with hecklers. I also don’t like when people are on their phone. If they’re snap chatting that’s fine, but if they’re blatantly like on their phone…
DDM: Especially when they’re right up front! Like fucking go sit down!
CC: I grab their phone, and then I don’t give it back to them till they give me a dollar. Like, if you’re gonna come to a drag show, come to the drag show.
DA: Right! Like last night my video is these guys like Deja (Skye)’s back here and (they were right next to the stage with their backs to her).
DDM: I saw that.
CC: That was probably me during Deja’s performance, I was like ugh. Just kidding! I love my sis, she’s great.
DDM: Like, when is this over? (kidding, they love Deja) No, it’s the dollar tug of war, either give it to me or don’t fucking give it to me.
CC: Oh yeah, they want to wait like, if you have it presented I’m gonna grab it. But no, it’s like, don’t try to make it about you during my moment because at the end of the day, I’m getting a check, you’re not.
DA: If you were on RuPaul’s Drag Race what kind of challenge do you think you’d win? What kind of challenge would likely land you in the bottom?
DDM: All of them and all of them. If there’s a singing challenge or if there’s a talent or any comedy challenge, let’s go bitch, let’s fucking go!
CC: Same here. Anything like theatre or singing, music.
DDM: An improv challenge, the Bitchelor that they just did.
CC: Yeah, I’ve said this before and I’ve actually talked to Adore about it, if I were on that show I would do her treatment of the charisma like I would talk my way out of things cause I’m a stupid bitch. Anything like sewing I’d be like, oh.
DDM: I sewed a hem. There’s a hem here. There’s a hem here.
CC: There’s a hem here, there’s a hem here, but I know. The thing is I’m not gonna Derrick Berry it and like make a skirt. Like I know okay, I’m gonna bring a body suit, cut this fabric, I know how to cut it, glue it to the fabric, boom, I look beautiful, call it a day. I’m a bullshit artist. I’m a bullshit artist.
DDM: So the fuck am I. That’s my drag aesthetic.
DA: Do you have a favorite story from your drag career?
DDM: My favorite story was becoming a Moore. Since the day I met Jaymelah, she has been my number one supporter, even when I was someone else’s daughter. She’s been such a rock and she’s taught me so much. I’ve been so blessed to be welcomed into this family unconditionally. It’s really crazy to think that a last name changes anything but it absolutely did. My career was not a “career” before I changed my name. Every member of this family is a supporter and it’s so intense and so wonderful. I was nervous because I was afab, and I wasn’t sure how they would respond to that, but I’ve never had a problem and honestly had nothing to fear. I’m so loved and I cherish every single one of them.
CC: I have so many stories that are my favorites. I mean if you’ve seen me perform you know I can werk it out, but I’m also very clumsy. Lol in a cute way. So the countless times that I’ve fallen down or off stage always make me laugh. One of my earliest memories, when I knew I was on the right track, was doing a contest show at 340 nightclubs in Pomona that was hosted by Bianca Del Rio, who’d just won S6. It was a drag suicide night which means we all didn’t know which songs we were performing to. So the DJ would play like 5 parts of songs in one mix and we had to do our best. Everyone else did alright but with my songs, I knew parts of them and I’m really good at selling a lipsync. So, remember this is when I first started so the wigs were real happy. I double-stacked wigs at the time. During 4/5 songs which was the Dolly Parton version of I will always love you, Bianca got on the microphone and was like, THIS BITCH IS FUCKING GOOD! GIVE IT UP FOR HER!! The audience went crazy. Bianca then goes THE WIG IS FUCKING AWFUL BUT SHES GREAT! And at the moment where it goes AND IIIII, I snatched off the wig and had another wig under and the audience went BEZERK! Bianca was laughing and living so hard! I still think about that moment because that’s when I realized my charisma was farther than others.
DA: Can you share a time when you had to get into Drag in challenging circumstances?
DDM: My niece was at my house one day to visit and she arrived just as I’d started getting into face. She’s two, so she wanted to play and every ten seconds it was “auntie Kassie!! Auntie Kassie!!” It took me ten times as long to get ready and it was worth every second because I love that damn kid so much. I pretended to put some makeup on her and she was happy.
CC: I’ve had to get ready with no power using my phone light only and a compact. It was a freaking challenge gurl! One time I got ready the backseat of a car going from Fresno to LA at dusk using a compact. Including padding and tucking. The struggle was real.
Dahlia Divine Moore info:
I regularly work every Sunday at Climax bar in Modesto for our Dragalicious Divas show, and every Monday night at Badlands in Sacramento for Afterhours with Apple Adams. I’m also performing with Willam at Climax February 24th, with Hellen Heels for One Helluva Show at Faces in Sacramento on March 18th, and the charity show at Faces on March 31st.
I’m on all social media! Find me on twitter and Instagram @thedivinedahlia and Facebook at Dahlia Divine Moore.
Cara Coronado info:
You can catch me everywhere! I reside in Fresno. You can catch me there every Thursday for THE XOTICA SHOW in FRESNO! You can also catch me in MODESTO For SICKENING EVENTZ. and you can usually catch me in SACRAMENTO at either Badlands or Sidetrax and sometimes SPLASH in San Jose!
In terms of social media – on all platforms, it’s @CaraCoronado including YouTube and Facebook. Thanks to my lawyers. (laughing) You can also check out my mixes on Soundcloud – https://soundcloud.com/CoronadoMixes
Written by Contributor Rebecca Cave