NO MORE STOLEN SISTERS.
Her monochromatic drag style, which is often influenced by Indigenous culture, is anything but one-note.
In the past, Verley has auditioned for season 11 and season 12 of the U.S. series. She never made the cut, though she found a silver lining in being able to star on the Canadian counterpart this summer (available to stream on WOW Presents Plus.) “I realized, being on Canada’s Drag Race [was] more of a place where I was going to be able to talk about being Indigenous,” she says. “When I was living in L.A., so many people I met didn't even know what ‘Indigenous’ meant. They're like, ‘What's an Indigenous person?’” Growing up in Surrey, British Columbia, Verley was equally confused about her own cultural identity. “I had no one to look at on TV that was like me. I went through this whole phase in high school, feeling like I had to be white passing to be successful,” she says. In 2015, she then developed a love for drag as a means to express herself as a Two-Spirit person. She says competing on Drag Race also allowed herself to fully accept her identity as a proud, Indigenous trans woman. “Being on the show helped me connect with my inner self that I was always trying to ignore,” says Verley. “I went in there being very open about viewing myself as non-binary, and by the end of it, I walked away feeling confident and understanding of myself. I was able to come home, have a conversation with my mom, and say, ‘I’m trans.’” — Christian Allaire/@IlonaVerley