‘RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under’ announces premiere date

The eight-part show will premiere on May 1

The Australian edition of RuPaul’s Drag Race will premiere on Saturday May 1 this year.

The eight-part special RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under will hit streaming service Stan, who first announced it in January this year.

Comedian Rhys Nicholson will be a guest judge each episode, sitting alongside RuPaul and series regular Michelle Visage in evaluating the drag queen contestants. The show’s contestants were revealed on a float at the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras last month.

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The show was filmed in New Zealand earlier this year.

The program has already been marred by controversy, after two contestants apologised for past instances of racist behaviour. Anthony Price – known as the drag persona Scarlett Adams – was called out for an image from 2012 where they had darkened their skin, blacked out two of their teeth with an Indigenous flag on their shirt, as well as undated occasions in which they had dressed as an African American woman, played a stereotypical Asian character on stage and wore a Sari.

In a statement, Price said, “There is no way to sugar-coat it, when I was a teenager roughly eight years ago I performed in blackface/cultural appropriation. I was young and ignorant. I am no longer this person”. Per The Guardian, Price has met with non-white drag queens to discuss the issue and help repair hurt caused.

Richard Chadwick, whose drag persona is Karen From Finance, also apologised for a picture of a large golliwog doll tattoo on their leg after it emerged on social media. Golliwogs are a historical racist caricature of Black people, considered deeply offensive. Chadwick said they had long since removed the tattoo, addressing it in an Instagram post.

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