RuPaul's Drag Race star Mimi Imfurst makes history in Cuba

Mimi Imfurst

A contestant from RuPaul's Drag Race has become the first US drag queen to perform in Cuba.

Mimi Imfurst, who appeared in season three of the US show, performed in a Cuban venue on New Year's Eve.

She lip-synced to Madonna's Express Yourself with a team of local dancers.

Due to an embargo on American culture in Cuba, a communist country, it was the first time they had ever heard the 1989 hit single.

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LGBTQ+ rights in Cuba were relatively poor for many years but evolved rapidly in the early 1990s.

Despite persecuting gay people during his early years in power, Fidel Castro said he opposed policies against homosexuality in 1993.

LGBTQ+ rights in Cuba have progressed under current president Raul Castro and his daughter Mariela Castro, who runs Cuba's national centre for sex education.

Mimi's appearance was arranged with the help of Cuban government LGBT organisation, El Proyecto Divino.

Through the embargo the Cuban people have shown the awesome power of the tenacity of the human spirit
Mimi Imfurst

"The moment was overwhelming, the idea that we can come together to create a piece of art," says Mimi.

"My trip to Cuba was life changing. I got to experience the rich history and culture of Cuba by living in their houses and spending the week disconnecting the outside world.

"More importantly I left inspired. Through the embargo the Cuban people have shown the awesome power of the tenacity of the human spirit.

"At the end of the day that will always win."

Mimi first appeared on the 2011 series of RuPaul's Drag Race, where she was eliminated in the third episode after losing a lip-sync battle to rival queen, India Ferrah.

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