Chi Chi DeVayne, Popular Contestant on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race,’ Dies at 34

That second captured a paradox, Jenna Wortham wrote in The New York Times. “Queer and gay culture has been so widely co-opted and incorporated into mainstream popular culture that it can feel commonplace, embraced by default,” she wrote. “Yet, pop culture has barely started grappling with more complex and ugly contemporary narratives, ones that make clear that universal acceptance is still a fantasy.”

Zavion Michael Davenport was born on Sept. 24, 1985, in Shreveport, La.

In a 2017 interview with The Shreveport Times, Ms. DeVayne described her early, pre-fame life. There had been classes on ballet, West African and fashionable dance and gymnastics, she mentioned. There had been additionally days spent with mates in empty fields throughout which they’d “turn flips all day long,” she mentioned.

“And once I started doing drag I had to incorporate that into my act because everybody likes a dancing queen,” she informed the paper. But there have been additionally setbacks. “I was tired of working two jobs and I felt like I didn’t have time to go back to school because I had to work to pay bills and I was in bankruptcy,” she informed the paper.

She began performing at a membership and gained a devoted following for her eccentric exhibits.

Then got here “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” the place Ms. DeVayne’s Southern attraction, acrobatics and candor would discover its greatest viewers. “Girl, I’ve seen people shot,” she mentioned on the present. “I’ve smelled, like, the smell of brains. When I tell you I come from the streets, I’m not kidding.” In one other interview, she spoke about becoming a member of a gang and carrying a gun. “‘Drag Race’ definitely helped me heal from a lot of things from my past,” she informed The San Diego Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender News.

She completed in fourth place on Season eight of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” and located a world viewers. Ms. DeVayne carried out in exhibits all over the world, telling The Shreveport Times, “Outside of the United States, the fans are wild.”

In 2018, Ms. DeVayne returned to compete among the many present’s all-stars. Though she was extra skilled, so had been her opponents. She completed eighth. “I’m so sorry,” she tearfully informed the judges in a single episode, admitting that the opposite opponents’ excessive ability ranges made her query her personal price.

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