Hannah Conda Vs The World

Hannah Conda Vs The World
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Sydney-based drag performer and RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under Season Two Runner-up Hannah Conda is representing Australia on Season Two of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK vs the World.

In a conversation with Star Observer, Hannah spoke about showcasing Australian drag to the world, that iconic Priscilla-inspired lizard look, and what it was like to walk into The Werk Room once again. 

‘Just Enjoy The Ride’

Sharing how she feels representing Australia and New Zealand, Hannah said, “It’s overwhelming but it’s an incredible honour.” 

This time in The Werk Room, Hannah is way more relaxed. 

“I felt more relaxed,” Hannah said. “I think because you’ve been through the machine once before, you know what to expect, you know how it’s all going to work generally. So I just felt a little bit more at ease. 

“I was excited, which I don’t think I really allowed myself to be while I was at Downunder… You’re thinking about everything. You want everything to be perfect. And the reality is, like my song in the first episode, nothing is really perfect.” 

She added, “Why waste any time and energy on being stressed when you can just enjoy the ride for what it is.”


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‘When They Pop Up Those Collars, I Just Lived’

In the series premiere, the runway category was “Queen And Country.” The queens were able to celebrate their home country with the world.   

Hannah wore a look created by Marrithiyel Aboriginal fashion designer and artist Paul McCann. It was inspired by the 1994 movie, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.  

Speaking about how the outfit came to be, Hannah said, “I wanted to incorporate something to do with our First Nations people. The other thing, for me, as a drag queen and as a Queer person in Australia, the first time we saw ourselves was in Priscilla, and my favourite costume from that was the lizards…It’s not a very long scene, but when they pop up those collars, I just lived.”

In order to make the look more extravagant, Hannah contacted McCann, whose artwork has been worn by celebrities such as singer Casey Donovan, journalist Narelda Jacobs, singer Thelma Plum, and Australian MP Linda Burney.

 “[McCann] rang me and he’s like, ‘I’d love, if you’re okay with it, to put a message on the back’. And I said, ‘Paul, this is your piece as much as mine. You put whatever you like on it, and I’ll wear it. I’m your muse, just go for gold’,” Hannah said.

McCann wrote the word “Treaty” on the back. 

“It was really special because when I got it back, he didn’t tell me what [he wrote] until I flipped it around.”

Hannah added, “I was really honoured to walk on the BBC saying ‘Treaty’, and being able to showcase Aboriginal artwork.”


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‘Wear My Kiss’ by Sugababes

Before moving to Sydney in 2015, Hannah grew up in Perth.

Hannah’s first drag performance was at an amateur drag night in 2010 at Perth’s Court Hotel.

Recalling the experience, Hannah said, “I did ‘Wear My Kiss’ by Sugababes because I needed to tell this guy that I was hanging out with, that I liked him. 

“I thought two birds one stone– I’ll do the drag show, but I’ll tell him that I like him while I’m doing the show.” 

Hannah continued, “So the whole concept of the show was that when it said ‘wear my kiss’ I went up and I kissed him on the cheek and then he knew that I liked him.”

When asked if the plan worked, Hannah laughed and said, “No, it went terribly. The drag was great– everyone loved that. But that relationship really fell apart real quick after that.”

‘I’m Hannah Conda– And It Just Felt Right’

Talking about how she came up with her drag name, Hannah explained that it was inspired by a drunk Irish man in Perth.

While walking from the Court Hotel to Connections Nightclub, she said, “This drunk Irish man came up – he just grabbed me and he was like, ‘you’re an anaconda’. I was like, ‘Sure, whatever, no worries’, and I kept walking. Then for the rest of the night, my friends were calling me an anaconda.”

A couple of weeks later, while preparing for her first drag performance, her friend drag performer Ruby Jules suggested the name “Rosie Cheeks.”

“‘Absolutely not! That is an awful name. Why don’t I be Anna Conda?’,” Hannah said.

“I liked the puns, but I like when the puns have a little bit more to it. Anna is a bit basic. ‘Let’s just make it Hannah. Like a girl’s name. I’m Hannah Conda’– And it just felt right.”

When asked what surprises people about her, Hannah cackled and said, “Well they’re not surprised that my lips aren’t real. They’re very aware of those blow-up things in my face.” 

Moving forward, Hannah plans to spend a month in the UK and “doing some viewing parties and celebrating with the UK fam, because you know, they’re part of our story now.”


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