We at Dragadventures adore Cynthia Lee Fontaine, we first met in 2017 when Dragadventures had just started, and the big drag world was very fresh and new to us. Dragtech was our second convention, we were unprepared and inevitably got sick. There was a queen to our rescue and her name was Cynthia Lee Fontaine, without a doubt the kindest queen we’ve met to this day. In 2018 we interviewed her to discuss her debut album, and well we’re back three years later (and boy has that time flown!) this time we’re talking about her new holiday single ‘Bring Me The Holidays’, touring, the pandemic (sorry) and the return of Dragcon LA 2022!
DA: Hi Cynthia, welcome to Dragadventures! We’re thrilled to have you ‘over’ for an interview, and thanks to the digital era we live in we don’t have to wait for another convention to speak to you (when we were preparing this interview, we realized that we last saw you way back in 2018!) It feels like life back then was so different and less complicated, in a way … How did you adapt to missing out on face-to-face interaction with fans? Thoughts on the “digital drag evolution’’?
Cynthia Lee Fontaine: Hi! First thanks for interviewing me again. It’s a pleasure! You know me already…I like to hug and interact with my fans. To be very honest I’m missing the human touch and interaction. But everything comes with an important safety reason. When it comes to the Digital Drag evolution, last year with the lockdown, it brought a lot of new digital alternatives and also for me a lot of learning. I learned how to film, edit and also I was hosting and performing for a lot of digital events for college students which is always a priority to me! I hosted more than eighteen digital events for different colleges and universities, including trivia and digital live shows. And honestly, this helped me a lot because, for a moment, it was difficult to lose in-person gigs and performances.
DA: What was your first gig back after the pandemic and do you have a favorite memory from it? What did you miss most about performing on stage?
CLF: My first gig back after the pandemic was a brunch in Dallas, Texas. I had the pleasure to perform with amazing and iconic personalities from the drag and pageant scene like Krystal Summers and Sasha Andrews! That’s the best memory from this experience.
DA: Speaking of gigs, You’ve been on the road with your drag race sisters April Carrion and Jessica Wild at the Bailamos after-party for Ricky Martin and Enrique Iglesias. How did it feel to be on such an iconic tour with legends and of course your sisters? What was the stand-out moment for you?
CLF: It was just so good because I didn’t get to see April and Jessica since the pandemic hit. Also, my stand-out moment for me was the surprise to see all the venues in California packed! But everything has been so precautionary and safe. It was a great feeling because you can feel the love and support, but also the need to go out and gather safely, to support and enjoy an entertainment performance.
DA: Another project you recently released was your new single ‘Bring Me The Holidays’, a festive Christmas song! What inspired you to release a holiday single, and what was the best part of making a Christmas-inspired song? For you, what are some of your favorite ‘Christmas songs’? Also if you could only choose one of them to listen to during the festive season, which one would it be, and who would sing it?
CLF: The best part of making my new single “Bring Me the Holidays“ was to work with my boyfriend Armando Barrientos. Working with the love of your life is always rewarding. Also, the reason why I wanted to do a Christmas song is because Christmas is my favorite holiday of the year. My favorite Christmas songs are “Silent Night” and “All I Want for Christmas” by Mariah Carey. If I have to choose one, it would be “ Bring Me the Holidays “ by Cynthia Lee Fontaine AKA Cucu (laughing)
DA: Next to your musical endeavors, you also run a successful Youtube channel, with beloved series like #cucuconfessions. What made you start up the confessions and will you do a season 4 for the return of RuPaul’s Drag Race season 14 or even any of the international seasons?
CLF: The inspiration for my YouTube channel was my cucu fans. They love to see me always on the screen! I want to please them and also give them funny moments. At this moment for 2022, I am focusing on my music career and other projects, but I will always return to YouTube for some fierce content!
DA: Speaking of it, Rupaul’s Drag Race is now entering its 14th season, and has produced countless international seasons across the globe. How do you feel the show has impacted your career, and would you ever compete on All-Stars?
CLF: Drag Race impacted my career in such a beneficial way, opening the doors for popularizing my character as an entertainer, traveling, and financial support. But also connected me more with my fans. When it comes to All-Stars, I will answer it to you with an example: if you are working as a cashier at a Supermarket and your boss offers you a promotion, will you take it? The answer is yes! (laughing)
DA: The days of a US-only version of RPDR are definitely gone, and fans can choose from a variety of new series and seasons: Thailand, UK, Spain, Holland, Canada, Italy, and soon France! Do you have a favorite among the international ‘sisters’ of RPDR? If you could compete on one of them, Which one would you choose and why?
CLF: I love all my sisters. But the one I connect with through social media is Vanessa Van Cartier, winner of Holland Drag Race. She is a loving and amazing person! Also in terms of competing on an international season, I might see myself more as a judge (laughing) and I always see myself at the Spain Drag Race Edition.
DA: Let’s imagine you get to design a runway challenge for a drag race season – what would it be called and what would the rules be?
CLF: If I design a challenge for the main stage of Drag Race will be “Queer Icon Realness From the Past. “ The competitors would have to do a homage to iconic figures in our queer community who helped us achieve our rights today and reimagine it with their own style.
DA: We think a challenge where contestants swap their drag with another queen could be very fun, ‘Freaky Friday’ vibes and all! Who would you swap with and why?
CLF: I think I would choose one of my sisters from season 2 of Drag Race and All Stars ⭐️ 1, the one and only Tammie Brown! Her drag is exciting and fun.
DA: May 2022 sees the return of RuPaul’s DragCon since the outbreak of Covid-19 and we can’t wait to return to a somewhat ‘normal’ drag fan life soon; how do you feel about going back on the road to meet & greet and do all the convention shenanigans?
CLF: First, I will tell you I’m going to DragCon 2022 in Los Angeles California. Second, I am ready! I know with everything happening and having more variants of COVID that are concerning, but I am missing my sisters, the fans, and my World of Wonder family a lot. Obviously, I and my Cucu team will be taking precautions. But I am excited for sure!
DA: We’re pretty sure we speak for drag fans worldwide when we say that we’re all so excited to see all of our faves again! What do you love most about conventions and do you have any tips and tricks for fans on how to “survive” the excitement (but let’s face it also the stress) of an event like that (fun fact – we still remember how you saved one of our team by giving her some cough drops at an M&G (this was back in 2017) because she literally was losing her voice)?
CLF: Omg I do remember! And it was back in the days when Drag Conventions was kinda new for everyone! My advice is to eat breakfast, drink a lot of liquids and of course wear a mask. Also comfortable shoes ?
DA: What does the new year hold for Cynthia Lee Fontaine, what are you most looking forward to? What should we be most excited about what to expect from you in 2022?
CLF: I’m excited that I am coming with more music! More collaborations with amazing artists, traveling and a huge production is cooking right now…more details soon. Plus of course DragCon! 2022 Cucu is coming for more! Thank you guys for this interview and also please stream my new Christmas single “Bring Me the Holidays,“ available on all digital platforms and watch and share my video available on my YouTube channel. I wish for you, all my fans, and everyone a happy holiday! Felices fiestas and a happy new year 2022! Thank you, Gracias ?
Be sure to follow Cynthia on the following social media and all the links to her music below:
Cynthia Lee Fontaine’s “Bring Me the Holidays” is available on all streaming platforms including Spotify and Apple Music. Visit CynthiaLeeFontaine.com.