The new international career of Rita Baga

Rita Baga says it in an interview: She has to schedule her rest periods. It’s not surprising since she filmed the second season of who can sing (Noovo) and the new show The train in me (Desire). And that’s before announcing to the whole world that she’ll be the host of the Belgian version of the phenomenon RuPaul’s Drag Race. The press spoke to him at the end of a long day’s work in the land of Brel and Angèle.

Posted at 8:00 am

Samuel Larochelle

Samuel Larochelle
Special collaboration

From the beginning, Quebec Drag states that it is strictly forbidden to disclose the filming dates of Drag Race Belgium to prevent the curious from doing research to discover potential participants who are no longer performing on stage or on social networks.

However, she can tell us how she got the job. “When I received an invitation to audition for a new franchise in Belgium, I immediately said yes and was very excited. Then I read the message again and saw that it was supposed to be the moderator! I had trouble concentrating for the rest of the day. »

Little did the producers know, however, that Rita’s alter ego, Jean-François Guevremont, had lived in Brussels for eight months to do an internship after graduating from high school in Human Relations. “Most importantly, in their eyes, I was the first French-speaking finalist in their franchise and had television experience. »

She revealed her connection to Belgium to them during the auditions, where drags from all over the world – including Belgium – were called. When she found out she would be the hostess, Rita Baga felt like she was on cloud nine.

I’ve always dreamed of breaking into the international scene and I’ve never hidden my pride in speaking French. To see a person like me, originally from the south coast of Montreal, achieve his dream, in French at that, is the apotheosis!

Rita Baga

In French please!

Rita Baga spoke in the language of Molière and agreed to moderate in international French. “It will be a bit of a surprise for the Quebecers who will be watching Drag Race Belgium, because I will almost have a radio Canadian voice, but it is not difficult for me. Coming from the theater, I’ve never found it difficult to make myself understood in Belgium. »

However, he criticizes the choice of a non-Belgian person for the animation. “I completely understand the concerns of people who want a local agent. That means there were auditions. In the eyes of RTBF, the equivalent of Radio-Canada, and the production of World of Wonder, I made the best impression. »

The criticism leveled comes in part as RuPaul, the franchise’s Queen Mother, is accused of allegedly not capturing all the local nuances of culture in the UK and Oceania, where she also hosted and judged several seasons.

On the subject, Rita Baga states that she is surrounded by a jury that supports her and that she does everything to dominate Belgian culture.

I have first class syndrome. I don’t pretend to say I know Belgian culture as well as a Belgian, but I do try to understand the intricacies upstream.

Rita Baga

In addition, the Quebecer plans to appropriate the very formatted concept with her humor and positivism. “Having been there myself, I would like to provide constructive and favorable comments that will be used for the drags. It’s a dream for the majority of drags in the world to be a part of this show. We don’t need to add extra pressure by being negative. »

To pay in advance

This humanity also served him during the filming The train in me which will appear in August. Far from aiming to turn people into drags, the show aims to support contestants at an important event: wedding, come out, starting a business, etc. “We help people who need a boost in self-confidence. Who better to help them than three drags? »

Rita Baga is joined by Sasha Baga and Petula Claque, colourful, altruistic co-hosts with considerable skill. The first has 10 years of retail experience in the apparel world and a background in hairdressing, while the second teaches the art of makeup.

As benevolent as the show is, the co-hosts are sure to raise eyebrows from people who think drag takes up too much space. Or those canceling drag events aimed at toddlers, such as story time moderated by drag queen Barbada.

“It’s all driven by fear and ignorance. It’s a big step backwards after so much progress in recent years. The most despicable thing is that it is often guided by a desire to be politically correct, while behind Barbada, Sébastien is an experienced teacher. »

In his eyes, there can be no doubting his abilities.

“Fear comes from not knowing what it means to be a drag. I find it unfortunate that under the label of not wanting to hurt people, we deny the next generation access to educational content on acceptance and openness,” says Rita Baga.

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