Venus, the 27-year-old Vancouver drag star, has won the title of Canada’s Next Drag Superstar, and a $100,000 prize, in Canada's Drag Race Season 4.
In last week's finale, it was down to Venus and Toronto's Aurora Matrix, who lip synched to Nelly Furtado's song "Try," in front of the Canadian artist. But ultimately, Venus came out on top.
"We both represented our drag in that finale episode so beautifully, but I am sort of the ballad queen of the season," Venus said. "I love to emote. I love that classic drag, emotive tune."
"Aurora was always my biggest competitor. ... It was more of the fact that Nelly Furtado is sitting right in front of us and we're staring this iconic woman in her eyes, performing her song in front of her, and just hoping that she likes what she sees."
Before those final moments, the top four competitors, Venus, Aurora, Denim and Nearah Nuff, had to write, record and perform a debut single, with advice from Furtado. Since Thursday's finale episode, Venus' song, "K.U.N.T. Manifesto," has been stuck in our heads.
"I was sitting there listening to the track like, 'What am I going to do with this?'" Venus recalled. "I feel like I just had to lean on the things that I enjoy in terms of music, so I'm a huge Nicki Minaj fan, I love her flow and her cadence, and I really wanted to highlight that within my own track."
"I really wanted it to be something that would stick in people's mind. So I guess that my mission was accomplished with that one."
Canadian queens are 'not going anywhere'
Venus is a Red River Metis two-spirit person and the first Indigenous queen to win Drag Race. For her final moments, Venus had the support of her family, much of which is based in Manitoba.
"A lot of my family came out to the finale party on Thursday and a lot of my Indigenous sisters, and there were a lot of relations in the audience," Venus said. "We had a beautiful land acknowledgement and speech by my great 'glammother' Jaylene Tyme, and I just feel very held within my community."
"There's a lot of pride, but this is just the beginning. ... This is something so much bigger than myself. Just because I'm the first doesn't mean I'm going to be the last. I sure hope not. This is now an opportunity for me to show everyone other Indigenous talent and Indigenous queens that I've looked up to. I'm just so, so grateful because this is a huge moment for myself and for the community as a whole."
Venus is actually heading to Festival du Voyageur in Winnipeg next month, a celebration for Metis people.
"I actually lived in Manitoba for nine months at one point and it was -55 C one day, and it was actually, literally colder than Mars that day," Venus said. "But I will do it for my people, it is in my blood, and nothing a little red wine can't help."
In terms of now representing Canada's drag community as a whole as a Drag Race winner, Venus' message is that Canadian queens are "not going anywhere."
Venus reveals which other Canadian drag queen she could beat in an 'All Stars' lip sync
With Venus now officially the fourth Canada's Drag Race winner, she's hoping in the future there will be an opportunity for a Canada-specific All Stars season.
"We have the talent, we have the personalities, that is something that I would just love to see, it would be so cool," Venus said.
Looking at her Canadian competition, including Canada's Drag Race host Brooke Lynn Hytes, Venus knows who she would prefer to lip sync against if a Canada All Stars ever happened: Season 8 All Stars winner Jimbo.
"No shade, look, it took her a while to win a lip sync on her All Stars," Venus admitted.
"Not everyone is an Aurora Matrix, girl can like split the house down. But that's the beauty of drag and the show, everyone has something else that they offer. But I think, perhaps, maybe I could beat Jimbo, if she didn't have a couple of tricks up her sleeve."
Looking to her future, Venus is excited to move forward in her career to pursue modelling, and maybe even become the next great horror movie star.
"I like to think I'm a beautiful lady and I would love to do modelling," Venus sad. "We see Miss Fame or Violet Chachki, these iconic queens who are at fashion weeks, and we haven't had a Canadian girl get to have that experience yet."
"But one of my biggest goals in my life, even before Drag Race, I've always wanted to be in a horror movie. So whether it's me in drag in a horror movie, or something like that, that would be so cool. Acting has always been my first love."
Where to watch 'Canada's Drag Race'
Catch up on all four seasons of Canada's Drag Race on Crave.