Iconic queens across the RuPaul’s Drag Race franchise gathered in the name of queer excellence and Latinidad in an exciting video release for Latine Heritage Month (Sep. 15 – Oct. 15) and LGBTQ Herstoy Month (October).
Behind-the-scenes of a glamorous and historic photoshoot, GLAAD asked Latine queens Vanessa Vanjie Mateo, Crystal Methyd, Bianca Del Rio, April Carrion and Alexis Mateo what being queer and Latine means to them, and how RuPaul’s Drag Race changed their lives.
“Growing up, I actually wanted to see somebody like me on TV,” shares Season 3 and All Stars Seasons 1 and 5 contestant Alexis Mateo. “Growing up in Puerto Rico was very lonely, and I knew there was something very strange and special about myself and even though people suppressed it and thought it was negative, I knew it was something that was going to be my future.”
Season 10 and 11’s Vanessa Vanjie Mateo, daughter of Alexis Mateo, shares that being on Drag Race feels like a “badge of honor.” “[I feel] unstoppable, I feel like the f*cking Avengers,” she adds.
On Latine pride, Season 6 contestant April Carrion says “Even more than ever I feel like I’ve embraced my roots. I feel like that’s where my power comes from.”
“It’s surreal, when you travel to Brazil, when you travel to Peru to do shows, and you’re there and there’s 3000 people there to see you,” says Season 6 winner Bianca Del Rio on her Latine fans.
GLAAD also asked the group which Latine queens inspire them. Season 12 contestant Crystal Methyd picked Drag Race: Mexico host, and Season 9 and All Stars Season 4 alum Valentina. “I’m obsessed with [her], even more so now that I’ve met her in person.”
“I’m my favorite,” boasts Miss Vanjie.
See how the other queens answer, and more on what Drag Race and Latinidad means to them via the full interview here.