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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Tia Kofi on why her Drag Race UK win is ‘vital’ for franchise


RuPaul’s Drag Race UK vs the World season two winner and Queen of Clapham Tia Kofi has mirrored on changing into the primary individual of color to grab Drag Race UK crown.

Final week, the 33-year-old drag queen and “Learn My Lips” singer fought off competitors from Hannah Conda, Marina Summers, and La Grande Dame to safe victory.

Regardless of Drag Race UK present for 5 years throughout seven common and worldwide seasons, Tia grew to become the primary individual of color to bag the crown, and solely the fifth individual of color to make it to the ultimate (after Tayce, JuJubee, Mo Coronary heart, and Black Peppa).

Talking completely to PinkNews following the large win, Tia defined why it “means absolutely the world” to be a Black Drag Race UK winner – much more than being the primary within the UK franchise to take dwelling a £50,000 money prize.

“It’s extra necessary to me that I’m the primary UK winner of color, as a result of with the ability to symbolize individuals who haven’t seen themselves mirrored on Drag Race UK is a privilege and an honour,” she says.

“It’s one thing that I hope I do properly and I hope I do, not solely folks of color, however everybody, very proud because the queen of the mothertucking world.”

Tia Kofi being announced as the winner of Drag Race UK vs The World.
Tia Kofi gained RuPaul’s Drag Race UK vs The World season two. (BBC)

Along with being the primary Black UK winner, Tia Kofi is barely the second Black queen in the entire European Drag Race franchises to win, after Drag Race France season two star Keiona took the crown dwelling final August.

“Seeing Keiona win Drag Race France was an incredible second and I feel you may all see that in Keiona’s response. It’s so emotional,” Tia displays.

Nonetheless, having a Black queen win within the UK feels further “vital” for Tia – although there’s a little bit of strain that comes with the title, too.

“[There is] perhaps just a little little bit of strain to uphold myself to a typical, as a result of it does generally really feel as an individual of color you do should work twice as onerous to be seen on the identical stage,” she says.

Tia’s win is a big leap ahead for the UK franchise, contemplating lower than 1 / 4 of the present’s contestants have been folks of color. For Tia, rising illustration doesn’t begin and finish with folks of color both; she’s eager for extra trans contestants and cisgender ladies to seem on the present, too.

Drag Race UK vs The World season two winner Tia Kofi holding her sceptre in the air.
Tia Kofi is the primary Black winner of Drag Race UK. (BBC)

“Victoria Scone is the one AFAB illustration that we’ve had. We’ve been lucky sufficient to have trans contestants, Dakota [Schiffer] and Cara [Melle] who’ve appeared on seasons of Drag Race, and I feel it’s actually necessary to showcase that.

“In fact, I’m by no means ever going to argue with folks making illustration on display screen [and] on stage extra numerous.”

Regardless of her historic achievement, Tia has needed to endure a wave of abuse from so-called followers who’ve denounced her win. Nonetheless, the queen isn’t letting it get her down.

“I sort of anticipated some negativity, however general, the response has been overwhelmingly optimistic,” she urges.

“It’s so great to see so many individuals attain out, like previous contestants, previous winners, individuals who really feel that they will see themselves mirrored on display screen.

“One in all my favorite tweets I noticed was somebody saying, ‘Lastly, Black, lanky, awkward ladies are seen’. And I used to be like, sure! I’ll proceed to be all of these issues at 200 per cent to drown out the haters.”

Tia has beforehand shared with PinkNews a poignant message for her haters, about how she hopes that “whoever has mistreated them, or whoever has taught them to behave like that, isn’t in [their] life any extra”.

Nonetheless, her message following her win is just a little easier.

“It was plenty of noise, and it did get to me to some extent, however I’ve really obtained an incredible assist community and actually great folks round me,” she says.

And to the haters? “Like, suck a d**okay.”



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