Drag Race UK: Dakota Schiffer on ‘privilege’ of being first trans woman to compete

A promo photo of trans woman Dakota Schiffer for RuPaul's Drag Race UK . (BBC/World of Wonder/Guy Levy)

Dakota Schiffer shared her joy at being the first trans woman to compete in the upcoming fourth season of Drag Race UK.

Dakota told PinkNews and other media that it was a “privilege” to represent the trans community on the hit show, which returns Thursday (22 September).

“In the UK, specifically, it’s a really difficult time and climate to be trans right now,” she began, “and to be given that opportunity to be a positive representation for my community was just overwhelming, it’s certainly something that motivated me.”

She continued: “It can feel daunting at times to feel like you have to represent everyone’s experience because trans representation is few and far between, especially on such a massive platform but it motivated me massively.”

The 22-year-old explained how her wish to see trans representation on screen and in drag was her biggest motivation to apply to Drag Race UK in the first place, so to be here now is “just amazing”.

Reflecting on how she found out she had been cast on Drag Race UK season four, she said: “I was in the middle of writing my dissertation and just about send my draft in and then you get a call that’s gonna change your life forever.

“I was like, ‘Oh my god, I was just at uni yesterday and now I need like 12 show-stopping looks’. Just trying to switch from a geography student to a competitor on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK season four in the space of a couple of months was certainly a challenge for me.”

However, the challenge was worth it. Dakota said that since the announcement for the season four cast dropped, “so many trans people have reached out to me and I can’t wait to actually watch the show now”.

Dakota was not the only one thrilled to see more trans representation in the show, with her fellow queens also praising this season’s inclusive casting. 

“I’m excited that the whole cast is really diverse,” fellow contestant Danny Beard said. “We’ve got our first trans contestant in our gorgeous sister Dakota so I just think, overall, it’s going to be a good season.”

Drag Race UK season four kicks off on 22 September at 8pm on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer.