Meet the Kiwi Queens ready to rule

There's a new tribe of local glamazons vying to keep the title in New Zealand.

After the triumph of Kiwi queen Kita Mean in the very first season of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under, there’s a new tribe of local glamazons vying to keep the title in New Zealand for season two.

Among them is Spankie Jackzon, 37, who has already won TVNZ+ reality series House Of Drag and says coming of age in Palmerston North has toughened her up for the cut-throat competition.

Spankie Jackson

“The Manawatu- wasn’t the easiest place growing up as a fabulous lady of the lash,” she tells Woman’s Day. “Homophobia was alive and well, but it taught me resilience, and gave me heart and a strong sense of community.

Luckily, things have changed and now I’m doing regular drag shows in Palmy. Who would’ve thought?!”

Also representing small-town Aotearoa is Aubrey Haive, 25, who hails from Timaru. Of her early days performing, she says, “Many of the locals enjoyed it, rallied around me and supported me so much, but the ones who didn’t were very vocal about it. It taught me to build a thick skin and just believe in myself.”

Aubrey Haive

Having previously walked the runway for New Zealand Fashion Week, Auckland makeup artist Yuri Guaii, 25, says her cosmetics and sewing skills will give her the edge – and she’s sure the Kiwi queens have the competition in the bag.

“We’re down-to-earth, self-deprecating and never take ourselves too seriously,” she declares.

Yuri Guaii

The second season of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under premieres on 30 July on TVNZ+.

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