Here’s a fun queen who turned up a few years ago and is now turning it OUT in 2021: from DR to LI to NYC, it’s the sassy, spicy Ruby Slay Monroe! [Cover photo: Stasi]
Thotyssey: Happy Post-Pride, Ruby–thanks for waking up to chat with us, lol!
Ruby Slay Monroe: Hello Thotyssey! Happy Post-Pride hangover! Lol, thank you for asking me to do this–I’ve been looking forward to this for years, believe it or not, haha!
Us too! I see you were at the restaurant John Doe on Sunday with AriaJae and the gurlz. How did that go?
It was amazing! First off, the venue has some of the best meals and drinks I’ve had and enjoying the company of my sisters Yaga Tigerlily, Robin Rose Quartz, Miss Bussy, Freeda Kulo and of course AriaJae made my Pride day very memorable. I love that for me, lol!
Wonderful! After a year of digital shows and weird Covid protocol-dictated live gigs, it must’ve been so epic to perform for a large, excited crowd of actual humans who didn’t have to remain seated and masked the whole time.
Oh yes, everyone is so much more excited to be out and about and have more interactions with the queens, and talk, and get to know more people from our amazing city. I can take my hand off the panic button for now, lol!
We hear that, and can’t wait to see what’s to come! But before we discuss the future, we must first step back to the beginning. Where are you from originally, and what were the things that interested / influenced you while growing up that may have ultimately led you down the Drag Path?
Ufff, not my childhood trauma… lol, just kidding! I am originally from The Dominican Republic, but I live in Long Island at the moment. I just turned 26 on June 17th, and that makes me a Gemini *wink wink*–problematic dot com, lol!
The things that interested me and influenced me to do drag would probably be my family, and just showbiz in general. My family is full of musicians like my aunts and uncles, mainly my father tormenta, who is part of a group called Banda Real in the Dominican Republic where he lives. So constantly being around musicians and Dominicans who use any excuse to throw a party, drink and dance made me want to be part of showbiz in some way. But I tell you, I never imagined it would be drag! I was never exposed to drag or anything like it before I moved to the US. Artists like Britney Spears (#FreeBritney), Shakira and Christina Aguilera influenced me massively into this gay red glitter ball I’ve become.
I also remember as a child dancing to “Fefita La Grande” with a towel on my head pretending it was a wig lol. Maybe I’ve been part of drag long ago without realizing it.
It always start with the Towel Wig, lol!
It does! All the gays I think as some point had a towel on their head as a wig.
How did you premiere as Ruby?
My first time performing was here in Long Island in a Pride for Youth center, where they provide free HIV testing, counseling and help get our people on PrEP. My friend Uriel asked me to do this pageant called “Miss Vida Gay” to help bring people in for testing, etc. That’s where I premiered as Ruby, with my Shakira number, lol! After that, I continued to compete here in Long Island in a competition called “Drag Factor” hosted by Syn and produced by Nick Dantuono (neither of these shows exist anymore, by the way). I eventually started going to “Drag Wars” [in Manhattan] hosted by Shequida, and started to make a name for myself.
I actually remember when you won the “So You Want a Job” competition at Cherry’s on the Bay on Fire Island! They didn’t give you a job, though–rude, lol!
The tea is being spilled, haha! Yeah, I did win that competition of I believe 20 or so drag queens and performers. Apparently I’m supposed to contact them, which I disagree on. They have lots of queens asking for jobs, so I kinda understand their point of view. Still, I contacted them… and maybe next summer if the pay is right, you’ll see me there with my own show!
You’re becoming a very prolific and busy queen these days!
Thank you! I’m a very spiritual queen and I believe whatever you put out there will come back to you ten fold, whether that’s love and kindness or ill intentions. I finally feel like the hard work and sleepless nights are paying off!
How might you describe today’s Ruby Slay Monroe Experience to the uninitiated, as far as the looks you serve and the numbers you do?
To the virgins, the Experience consists of mainly high energy numbers that could be considered Top 40. I like giving it my all; no matter how much I sweat, I wanna make people feel like dancing with me and screaming. You will definitely catch me doing splits, death drops (dips) and other crazy things that I probably shouldn’t do, haha! On special occasions you might get Spanish numbers–which I wanna do more of, because some people may not know I’m Latina or proud of my heritage. The Body Mowma is there, lol! I am a corseted, padded queen with a good pair of melons, so you’ll definitely see that hourglass figure you came to see.
You have some shows coming up where you’ll get to give us all your Latina queen realness very soon, starting with The Rosemont’s Sunday “Rica” brunch on July 4th.
Yes! I’ll be doing Spanish numbers with [brunch hostesses Victoria Holiday and] Vena Cava, so be on the lookout! If we are all lucky we’ll get some Shakira, J-Lo, Belinda, Paulina Rubio and uncut dick, lol! It’s a win-win situation, haha!
Another stage you’ll soon get to shine on is at Secret Room NYC, for Lucky Cheng’s “Noche Latina” on July 9. You’ll be with Ari Kiki, Egypt and Catrina Lovelace! Tell us more.
I won’t say much because I am still working on it, and I’m excited to work with all those queens. But you can definitely expect new Spanish lip syncs never seen before. I gotta say I am so grateful to Svetlana Stoli and Essence for helping me get this opportunity; I’ve been wanting to perform for Lucky Cheng’s for the longest time.
I’ll be at the Governors Comedy Club in Levittown the 16th [with Olivia London and Frida Cox].
And soon, [there will be] some out-of-state gigs with Angelique Stevens, Civilization and Liz B. N. Also, I’ll be doing competitions here and there like “Are You the Next Diva,” “Drag Wars,” and “Polish the Queen.” I also got some awesome looks in the works! So don’t forget to follow all my social media, and my Venmo and CashApp are itsrubymoney if anyone feels generous!
And I’ll just say that I am a Latina queen… and I can be white passing. But I’ll continue to use my privilege to help my POC and or LGBTQ+ community. Also, everyone that doesn’t think I’m talented can eat my butt, to end this with some shade, lol! Hugs and kisses for all!
One last question: would you ever do a show with Ruby Roo, Ruby Fox and Ruby Powers, or is that too much Ruby for one stage?
I would absolutely love too! I saw [Ruby Roo and Ruby Fox] perform recently together, and wished I was there. But who knows what will happen… we’ll see!
Check Thotyssey’s calendar for Ruby Slay Monroe’s upcoming appearances, and follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.