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You Gotta Have Faith: Mzz Kimberley on Being Part of Duckie Family Legacy

Mzz Kimberley is a cabaret performer, actor and singer. She writes for Run Riot on being part of the Duckie family and keeping faith in yourself at all times.

I’m just getting home from rehearsals and thinking to myself how blessed I am. I’m working, I’m healthy, I have my baby dog Lula who is always there for me when I arrive home.  I have great friends who I respect, and they respect me. Yes, there are things in my life that needs attention. I have bills coming out of my ass, my place needs to be painted, I could do with making more money and someone I regarded as a friend betrayed me.  These are problems that are not worth getting upset by. I’m still blessed. The bills will be sorted, my place painted, I will make more money and what a blessing it was to be betrayed by a person I thought was a friend.  The reason why being betrayed is a blessing, because it made me stronger and to get rid of negative energy in your life is very important. I don’t think many realise how powerful positive energy is to surround yourself with. When you’re with someone who lifts you up, you can fly as high as the sun. Being around negative energy will only bring you down and destroy your soul.

I’ve been in London now for many years and have had an amazing career and have done many things your average person wouldn’t even entertain. From playing tennis at the Palace to being the face of the world’s most famous gay club, ‘Heaven’. I have had many knock backs, but learned to stay strong and keep going. Having faith in yourself is the key. I was lucky to have parents who taught me to always believe in myself and with hard work you will succeed in whatever you want from life. I never thought being a black transwoman would hold me back. Yes, it was not easy at times dealing with not only racism but transphobia coming from my own community. But believing in yourself is powerful and positive.

As I said I have done many amazing things in my time here in the UK, but it is a huge honour to be the host of Duckie Family Legacy.  Duckie Family Legacy is an evening for queer people of colour and their allies, exploring the roots of Queer People of Colour. These communities coming together, learning about each other and supporting each other is rewarding. Currently in life with persons such as Putin, Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson and Trump, we need each other.  Being involved with Duckie Family is the greatest gift ever because it has brought us together and being together we can help bring change and support social justice for all.  When I’m on stage looking in the audience, it fills my heart with joy, feeling safe and appreciated by communities that have had to fight just to live.  

As I mentioned earlier I was just getting home from rehearsal.  I’m working on the most amazing play ever and my most challenging part to date, Dead and Breathing.  Written by Chisa Hutchinson and directed by Rebecca Atkinson-Lord. Dead and Breathing is a dark comedy of ethics and mortality that positions the right to die against the right to live your own life. Through constantly surprising humour and persistent questioning, Dead and Breathing investigates morality, and the intense tug-of-war between the right to die with dignity and the idea of life as a gift. I play a trans woman who is a nurse, and Christian with a foul mouth - love it. I get the amazing opportunity to share the stage with a beautiful Hollywood and Broadway actress, Lizan Mitchell. I am so blessed.


Duckie Family Legacy @ Rich Mix 17 Feb

All images by Darren Evans and Almass Badat.