She’s stunning and captivating, a work of perfection.
However, counting Miss Fame as just another pretty, fishy queen would be the biggest mistake. It was a mistake I made during the premiere episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race. There’s so much more to this queen than meets the eye.
During her nine episode stint on the show, we got only a small glimpse of Miss Fame’s many facets. She proved herself to be a fearless competitor, always willing to try new things and refusing to be told she can’t. She showed pure compassion and empathy for her sister queens, wanting to know them on a personal level. Who can forget the uncontrolled tears that marred her porcelain skin when Ginger revealed her struggles during an episode of Untucked? Or the warm hug and sympathetic ear she was more than willing to offer to a struggling Katya?
Miss Fame was kind enough to take a moment out of a New York tour with her mom and sister to chat with me. That moment turned into a conversation where I gained so much more insight into this beautiful chicken loving enigma.
Immediately following her elimination on Drag Race, Miss Fame released her first music video, Rubber Doll, from her upcoming debut album. Produced by Killingsworth Recording Company, the same studio behind Adore Delano’s hit album, Rubber Doll is the perfect debut to what will be an eclectic album that varies from dance tracks to ambient pop.
“All of these songs that are written are from experiences, whether they’re more humanizing or heartfelt, or simply dance tracks, they connect to me and I was really immersed in the album.”
Rubber Doll transcends the stereotypical image of plastic perfection to provide a glimpse into the art of fetish.
“I was introduced to the fetish world through my clients who were also cross dressers. Through makeup and the art of being Miss Fame, I was kind of like this dark star in their vision. They were allured by me, but I was unattainable. I’ve kept a journal for 10 years and one of the entries happened to be my experience with the fetish community and being introduced through these men that I transformed.”
For Fame, Rubber Doll is a great way to show the duality within herself.
“I’ve gotten to do some really cool things in runway shows as a boy, but Miss Fame gave me opportunity so much quicker, so much more colorful, and at such an accelerated rate, I couldn’t deny the existence of her. Being Miss Fame gives me life.”
Kurtis Dam-Mikkelsen, the future Miss Fame, grew up on a farm surrounded by athletic siblings, grandparents, and an uncle with a local reputation as a star basketball player. Not necessarily an ideal setting for a young boy more interested in artistic things than sports. Determined to succeed on his own terms, Kurtis found natural success and praise in 4-H and FFA showing chickens.
“I was this kid that was artistic and sensitive, and I loved animals. Growing up in the house I did, with my grandparents, my grandfather wanted to have a reason to go and support something that I did. He wanted to go see us playing sports because he liked being proud of his family. So for me, when I started doing 4-H, I was really good at it because I was passionate about it. I loved animals and he could come and support that like he was going to a sports tournament because it was a competition.”
Kurtis has applied the same sense of success to Miss Fame as well. “Being so different in my family, how can you gain the support and acceptance of your family if nobody’s ever done it before? It was so left field. It’s only when you become successful that people will perceive it in a respectful manner.”
It’s that will to succeed, to innovate, to push the boundaries, but on her own terms, that seems to fuel Miss Fame. It was a drive we saw throughout her nine episodes of Drag Race. Not once did Miss Fame ever refuse to try something outside of her comfort zone.
“Drag is an evolutionary art. I don’t say I’m a one trick pony and this is what I do, and I’m not willing to try anything else. I think we should explore what we’re capable of, push the boundaries, push ourselves to be better, and then see what the end result will be…artistically I’m always learning. As a human being, I’m always learning. It’s a wonderful thing.”
Miss Fame’s current focus is to evolve as an artist and to expand her musical career. The release of her debut album and another music video are both on the horizon. But Fame doesn’t want it to stop there. “I’ve just planted the seeds. This album is going to be a huge exposure. I feel like it could become something that breaks past the drag categories.” For Fame, that means not seeing drag as a limitation in music, but as the future of music. RuPaul has done it before, but Fame believes other artists are capable of it too and she wants to be one of them.
Beyond the recording studio, Miss Fame dreams of walking the catwalk for Jean Paul Gaultier and other iconic fashion designers. Inspired by the golden age of Hollywood and the infamous supermodels of the 90’s, particularly Linda Evangelista, who came up more than once during our conversation, Miss Fame brings her obsession with the curves, shapes, and glamor of those unforgettable beauties into her aesthetic. It’s something she says we don’t have much of, even in Hollywood, because styles have changed so much.
“Who’s going to wear a corset all the time? Me and Violet!”
Miss Fame would like to see the fashion industry evolve to not only blur the lines of gender, but to showcase more duality. A dream photoshoot would have to be a major fashion editorial, to be featured and recognized as a standard of beauty and credited for the fact that it’s drag in Italian Vogue.
“I could represent a brand as a man and stand there in a suit, but also put on a gown, a body, and paint my face in such a way that really represents and encompasses that beauty has no boundary. Gender doesn’t have to say that because you were born like that, you have to be like that. We’ve had so much evolution with trans models being so successful, I ask where is the drag queen that’s modeling on the super level? I would love to be the one to break through and be the representation of a duality model. I think there is something very special about the aesthetic being created and then removed.”
The future is certainly bright for Miss Fame. The refreshing aspect of Miss Fame’s success is that it goes beyond being recognized on the street. For Fame, success also means being an example for someone else. It means being able to inspire and make connections with others through her art. For Miss Fame, RuPaul’s Drag Race was only the beginning.
Don’t miss a beat, take a moment to follow Miss Fame.