Cheddar Gorgeous is auctioning off her ‘Tickled Pink Runway’ from RuPaul’s Drag Race UK for World AIDS Day.
In the sixth episode of the show’s fourth season, the entertainer memorably donned a black bodysuit embellished with bright pink triangles, which she explained were inspired by the ACT UP movement – an organisation fighting to end the AIDS epidemic.
Its slogan, ‘Silence = Death’, was branded across the outfit.
The Manchester-based queen explained the significance of the clothing to her cast member Dakota Schiffer: “During the HIV/AIDS crisis in the ‘80s, the ACT UP movement took those symbols that were used against us and turned that into a symbol of queer resistance.”
Following the episode, Cheddar was met with overwhelming praise from viewers and LGBTQ+ organisations/charities for using the runway to start a discussion about HIV stigma.
All proceeds from the raffle will go to George House Trust and the Terrence Higgins Trust, two of the UK’s leading HIV and sexual health charities.
Darren Knight, Chief Executive of George House Trust, said in a statement: “Cheddar is an absolute legend on every level, giving their time freely, gladly, and warmly to George House Trust for many years.
“We’re delighted that we’ve got such an amazing ambassador, supporter and friend who is a force for good. Cheddar understands how HIV has changed and also that fear and stigma still exists.
“They articulated that on Drag Race by shining a spotlight on HIV activism with this iconic Act Up runway look and through educating everyone watching that Undetectable Equals Untransmissable.”
Knight continued to praise Cheddar for using their platform to “educate the Drag Race audience” about HIV/AIDS and described them as someone who “shares our vision of a world where HIV holds no one back.”
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Ian Green, Chief Executive at Terrence Higgins Trust, added: “Cheddar’s stunning runway look paying tribute to HIV activism over the last four decades and the Silence=Death Project was undoubtedly one of the absolute highlights of this season’s RuPaul’s Drag Race UK.
“What was even more powerful was the werkroom chat with the other queens that will have educated so many people about the realities of HIV today, including that someone living with HIV and effective treatment can’t pass it on.
“We’re very grateful to Cheddar for their continuing work to tackle HIV stigma and for raffling off this iconic look to benefit people living with and affected by HIV.”
The reward for the winner will be the runway look, an invitation for them and a guest to attend the LGBT History Month exhibition in Manchester – where the outfit will be on display from the 1 February 2023 – and an overnight stay in the Kimpton Clocktower Hotel.
The runner-up will receive an invitation for two to attend the LGBT History Month exhibition and a meal at The Refuge restaurant.
To enter the raffle, visit here.