Harry Eelman

“I need to take a vacation, because I want to survive, like Gloria Gaynor.”

RuPaul’s Drag Race star – and GT cover model – Yekaterina Petrovna Zamalodchikova (but your Dad just calls her Katya) announced on Instagram live last night that she’s taking a break from drag.

The season seven contestant and All Stars 2 finalist – real name Brian McCook – addressed fans in a video spoken entirely in French, explaining the break was due to her mental health.

“There is no emergency. But I needed to take a little break,” she said. “It was time to take a vacation, because my health, the drugs, my brain, that wasn’t good.”

Katya continued: “But I am not crazy, you understand of course. I’m a language student first, an artist second, a drag queen third. Health is the most important thing for me.

“Right now, this is not a crisis. I’m taking a vacation for me. I need to take a vacation. The sun is there, I’m happy. My health is here, I’m happy.”

She reiterated to her fans: “I’m telling you this with a sense of urgency. I’m not dying. Let me tell you the truth. I’m not dying, I want to live. I’m a drug addict, but I’m sober. Today, and yesterday. And before. But I need to take a vacation, because I want to survive, like Gloria Gaynor.

Harry Eelman

“I don’t have a drug crisis right now, because I’m sober. I’m taking care of myself today. And that is the reason why I’m happy. But I need to choose carefully the projects that will not … you understand.

“But I need to take a vacation because I’m tired, I’m exhausted, my brain doesn’t work anymore, because of the drugs, because of all the gigs, I believe you understand. We’ll see, and I wish you a good day. Bye bye.”

Katya and Trixie Mattel – the funniest duo in RuPaul’s Drag Race herstory – appeared on the cover of our January issue and spilt the T, telling Gay Times that the core purpose of drag has been lost on the show’s younger audience.

“I think everybody should like drag, but not everybody should do it. In some ways, the popularisation of drag has made it look like the point of it is getting attention and so I think there’s a huge surge in this industry. But, maybe a lot of people are doing it for not the right reasons,” Trixie told us.

Katya added: “People are not having fun with it anymore which is very strange. And also, people are thinking it’s some legit profession like being a docent at a museum. People are confusing it for a legitimate career path which it absolutely isn’t.”

Read our full interview with Katya and Trixie in our latest issue now at buy.gaytimes.co.uk