Melinda Verga is making “herstory” as the first drag queen to represent Edmonton on Canada’s Drag Race.
Eight years ago Verga wanted to take a combination of her skills of singing, dancing, acting and designing to the next level and turned to drag.
Out of drag, Verga works in shipping and always dreamed of being on the reality competition series to network and help push her drag career full-time.
“The goal is to try and get on the show so you get the exposure, you get the platform and then hopefully you get to travel and work in so many different places all over the world,” Verga told CTV News from her Edmonton home.
She describes her drag style as “fun, fierce and fabulous.”
Verga says being cast on the show was one of the happiest days of her life and describes having a break down.
“I ugly cried, like I balled my eyes out. I actually had a headache for about three days,” she said.
Canada’s Drag Race is a competition series, based off the U.S. version, where drag queens compete for the title of “Canada’s Next Drag Superstar.”
Melinda Verga in Canada’s Drag Race. (Crave)
Verga says she has a lot of pride and honour to represent Edmonton on the national stage.
“We have such an amazing arts scene in this city and tremendous talent that we have in this city and quite often I feel like everyone is just kind of sleeping on Edmonton as far as talent and the arts scene,” Verga said.
“That was our moment to shine, it wasn’t just mine.”
Verga holds many titles within the city including Mz. Gay Edmonton 2017 and winning Edmonton Drag Idol in 2008.
DRAG RACE HIGHLIGHTS
Verga stepped up to the challenge and faced 11 other queens on the reality competition.
One of the biggest surprises of the season was Verga’s husband Scott Green showing up on the show.
Months before he appeared on the show Green had a stroke that hospitalized him for three weeks.
Green appeared for a Maxi Challenge where the queen’s design skills are put to the test by giving someone a drag makeover.
“When it was Scott that walked through the door I collapsed completely and broke down,” Verga said.
Verga jokingly says putting Green in drag was “impossible and hell.”
“Scott has really sensitive eyes so once we got to apply eyeliner, eyeshadow or anything around the eyes, he could not stop blinking and he could not stop shedding tears.”
Green says the phone call to have him in the show caught him off guard.
“I was like, ‘You know I got to do this for him, I want to surprise him,’” Green said.
Verga’s time on Canada’s Drag Race ended that episode when she had to “lip sync for her life” to a Carly Rae Jepsen song against drag queen Nearah Nuff.
While her journey on the show ended, Verga is excited for what lies ahead and has advice for other Edmonton queens.
“Find that happiness in your life and shine it out to the world so you can inspire people who just might inspire other people. It’s a life changing experience.”
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