Chelazon Leroux is Saskatchewan’s first drag queen called to kill Canadian Drag Race.
She said the opportunity to participate in the reality show was a big step forward, not only for her as an artist, but also for the community at large.
“Growing up, I never saw someone like me in the media,” Leroux said. She is a Two-Spirit Dene First Nations drag artist and content creator who grew up in northern Saskatchewan but now lives in Saskatoon.
Leroux, who uses the pronouns he/she/they, said the first time she saw another two-spirited Indigenous person on mainstream television was watching Season 1 of Canadian Drag Race.
“Having someone like me was the most life-changing thing in my life.”
Throughout the season, Leroux will face off against 11 other Canadian dragsters who will show off their performing skills as they try to win the title of Canada’s Next Drag Superstar.
Leroux said being on the show is important for two-spirited Indigenous youth, who need to see like-minded people in the world trying and succeeding.
“To be able to see someone loving what they do and making a life out of it and a career out of it gives hope for a generation,” she said. “It’s life-saving.”
Leroux said she is following in the footsteps of two other queens who have represented Indigenous and Two-Spirit communities in the show’s previous seasons.
“I’m just continuing this performance, but I’m the first from Saskatchewan, so it’s very exciting to tell a different story or a different perspective.”
She is no stranger to sharing her knowledge. Before TV, there was TikTok for Leroux. He is a social media star, with hundreds of thousands of followers. She often records under her “Auntie” persona, to share content that is both educational and cheeky, comedic.
The range of content is extensive, covering mental health and social issues, as well as life and beauty.
She also has an ongoing beauty tutorial series titled Mortal as auntwhere she shares all sorts of tricks, including teaching people how to do a bun (to become “snaggable real quick”.)
From concept to release, creating these videos is a relatively quick process for Leroux, who can do it all with a phone. While she can’t speak on the show just yet, she says, generally speaking, being on a professional set means much longer — sometimes exhausting — hours.
Ultimately, the focus is always on creating and she said she loves working with the other artists, noting that this herd of queens is full of diversity.
“You will see yourself in them,” she said. “You will laugh, you will cry and you will feel proud.”
Leroux said she felt pressure to do well on the show. She added that no matter the outcome, as long as there are people who feel seen and heard, she will have succeeded.
“My younger self would probably be terrified, full of anxiety – very normal reactions – but also very excited,” she said.
Leroux encouraged people to connect and “stay dead.”
Season 3 of Canada’s Drag Race starts Thursday, July 14 on Crave.