Katya Zamolodchikova (RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 7 and All Star’s 2) was a guest on the podcast, LGBTQ&A with Jeffrey Masters this week, and opened up about past suicide attempts, sex work, and what it’s like to be doing a Russian character in 2017.
The full interview is available here and below are some clips of their conversation released here on INTO.
Katya has been “extremely suicidal”:
“I think about suicide every day cause I joke about it. And also I’ve been … I’ve spent a ton of my life extremely suicidal. I tried to kill myself in the shittiest way back then. But I’ve realized now that it was literally just so that I didn’t have to do something that scared the living hell out of me.”
Katya spent a week in a psych hospital after a suicide attempt:
“I’ve tried to, and like I said, and then it was never going to work but it was like a cry for help. It was like a diversionary…diversion tactic. And then I had to spend like a week in a psych hospital, couldn’t leave. And I was scared…I just replaced one scary thing with a whole week of scary shit. So it was really crazy.”
Katya talks about getting paid to sleep with men:
“I basically got to fuck men while I was in drag. Men who were extraordinarily handsome…it actually fucked me up because it got my body used to fucking 10s.”
“There was intimacy, but there was no strings. It was just pure. Sometimes it was a transaction, sometimes it was for money. Other times it was just for fun.”
Katya says they were mostly straight men, but she didn’t question their sexuality
“Straight-identified, for the most part. And I was always very curious and careful to not ask questions that challenged their ideas in their head that they were fighting with.”
Katya says she stole $20,000 from the shop she worked at to pay for drugs and also helped finance a pageant:
“I stole $20,000 from the shop that I worked at…I was addicted–I am addicted to crystal meth.”
“I used a lot for rent, I used a lot for other kinds of drugs…I actually financed some of the girl’s pageants with some stolen money, which I was so into. Like I think I was actually in a program in the pageant as a donor with stolen money. How fucking drag is that, bitch? Miss Gay USA contestant number 12 is generously funded by Brian McCook at Dorothy’s Boutique or whatever and this stolen fucking cash. It’s just amazing.”
“I confessed. And you know what? I’m going to say it. This is maybe worth mentioning because I had … when I did that, that was the last secret I ever had. And that sounds so dramatic and Hollywood.”
Katya says her Russian character was never about being Russian:
“My character was never about being Russian. It was about being confident. What, as an American, what voice would you use for your confident voice if you had no confidence? Russian, obviously. They all sound like they’re angry. They all sound like they know exactly what they’re talking about. And they all sound like they’re a little bit sad about it, so you know it’s the truth.”
Katya says that with everything going on with Russia in the new right now, doing a Russian character sucks:
“Oh, it sucks. You know what, I slept through that 24-hour news cycle where those fucking Russian hookers pissed on some bed. I … piss queen since the jump. Russian drag queen since the jump.
“And then I sleep through the 24 hour new cycle that was literally the pinnacle of my stupid satirical career. I am such an idiot.”
LGBTQ&A is a weekly interview podcast that’s documenting the stories of the LGBTQ community. It’s hosted by Jeffrey Masters and available on iTunes, Spotify, I Heart Radio, Stitcher, and Google Play.