Valentina, Miss Congeniality and breakout star of RuPaul’s Drag Race season nine and current contestant on Drag Race All-Stars season four opened up about their gender identity in a new interview with Out.
“I identify as non-binary,” Valentina told the magazine. “I don’t completely feel like a man, I don’t completely feel like a woman. I feel like a goddess. I feel like I’m my own gender.”
Valentina is one of several Drag Race contestants who have come out as non-binary or gender non-conforming since first appearing on the show, Out notes. Season five winner Jinkx Monsoon is non-binary, season six finalist Courtney Act and season seven winner Violet Chachki are gender fluid, and Valentina’s season nine co-contestant Aja is also non-binary.
Valentina will play the role of Angel Dumott Schunard in Fox’s live production of the musical RENT, which airs January 27, and told Out that their non-binary identity will inform how they play the character. “I get to bring that aspect to my Angel character,” Valentina said, “and really have an idea of like, ‘Why is she so happy and so confident in her armor, in her drag?’”
“I do take the responsibility of being a gay non-binary drag queen person taking on a really important iconic role like Angel and I hope [audiences] tune in for it.”