RuPaul’s Drag Race queens usually go one of two routes when they leave the show – either jumping straight on the Werk The World/DragCon promo tour, or releasing a single based on one of their catchphrases (see Soak It Up, Purse First, Brown Cow Stunning).
But season 11’s third place queen is taking on a different project.
**Warning: spoilers ahead**
A’Keria C Davenport is starting up a charity for transgender women and LGBTQ+ youth following her time on Drag Race, inspired by a late friend.
Speaking to Metro.co.uk about her post-finale plans, the 31-year-old said: ‘I’m actually working with some cosmetics companies and I’m trying to also do some skincare products. And I’m also starting a charity which will be a safe haven for transgender women and homosexual youth.
‘So when things aren’t going as planned in your life, whether your family are putting you out because of your lifestyle, or you’re a victim of transgender gay-bashing, which takes place a lot. I lost a very close friend, so that’s something that’s very dear to me.’
A’Keria’s future plans come after she made it tantalisingly close to the crown, after reaching the final four.
However, eventual winner Yvie Oddly’s backbends and general weirdness outdid A’Keria during their lip sync to Rihanna’s SOS (side note – a tune), leaving Miss Davenport in third place.
A’Keria told us: ‘Of course I was upset at how it went, but I was proud of myself because regardless of what they say, I gave it everything I had, and everything I said I would.
‘I just wanted to go in and… I have established myself as an entertainer, so I know my strengths and my weaknesses, so going into it, I just wanted to show who I am. I was there to entertain. I wouldn’t change anything about my performance. Honestly, nothing at all.’
A’Keria progressed from being a classic pageant girl to an all-round performer – the highlight being when she played a street twerker running from the cops in the LADP challenge.
And while the queen – real name Gregory D’Wayne – knew she had it in her, she admits eight years in pageants did form many of her habits.
She said: ‘I am happy with how I was portrayed when it comes to who I am as an entertainer and breaking that mould of a stereotype as the average pageant queen you’ve seen on Drag Race.
‘When you come from a pageant background, there are so many requirements of how you’re supposed to act or present yourself when you’re a reigning queen. So I was sticking to that, because I’ve been doing pageants for eight years.
‘I knew I always had it in me. Everyone who knows me knows I am so goofy, I just let stuff roll off my tongue – but only as Gregory, It was actually whether I would allow myself as A’Keria to be as free as Gregory would be with my friends.’
And that versatility is sticking with A’Keria when she performs on stage post Drag Race: ‘You can expect to see a versatile entertainer, someone who can entertain the masses – whether it’s something comedic, or looks, or dancing – there’ll definitely be twerking.’
RuPaul’s Drag Race is available to stream on Netflix.
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