For the first time in Rupaul’s Drag Race history, a Canadian queen will compete for the title of America’s Next Drag Superstar.
Drag queen performer Brooke Lynn Hytes is filling some tall shoes as the first Canadian competitor to be featured on the Emmy-winning series.
Dubbed as the Queen of the North, Hytes is the drag persona of Brock Hayhoe, who originally hails from Toronto, Ont.
Hytes will compete for the crown and a grand prize of US$100,000 in a series of weekly challenges while battling it out against 14 other fierce queens to prove she has the charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to be crowned the winner of Season 11.
Hytes began as a ballet student at the National Ballet School in Toronto before gravitating to drag at Toronto bars and nightclubs. Eventually Hytes headed stateside to pursue a drag performance career in New York.
Canadian fans of RuPaul’s Drag Race have long griped that a homegrown performer hadn’t appeared on the series, despite a vibrant array of acts to choose from across the country. Part of the challenge was getting a Visa to work stateside.
The Season 11 queens were announced on Jan. 24 by Adam Rippon and Season 10 winner Aquaria in a live YouTube announcement.
“I’ve been watching the show since the very beginning and it’s something I never thought I’d be able to do because I’m Canadian,” Hytes said in the YouTube announcement.
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“I have to be legal to work here, and I made it happen. I make stuff happen, what can I say?”
In the years that followed, Hytes bounced between Canada and the United States, eventually landing in Nashville after winning the 2014 Miss Continental pageant with a ballet performance of Britney Spears’ I’m a Slave 4 U.
Many fans took to Twitter to discuss the Canadian queen joining the cast.
—With files from The Canadian Press