Laganja Estranja

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Laganja Estranja
Laganja20160806 034227.jpg
Estranja in 2016
Jay Evan Jackson[1][2]

(1988-12-28) December 28, 1988 (age 33)
EducationCalifornia Institute of the Arts (BFA)

Jay Evan Jackson, known professionally as Laganja Estranja (born December 28, 1988) is an American choreographer and drag queen based in Los Angeles. Laganja competed on the sixth season of RuPaul's Drag Race, finishing in eighth place. She came out as transgender in 2021.

Early life[edit]

Jackson was born to Nancy Lynn Ferrin Jackson and David Michael Jackson[3][2], was raised in Dallas, Texas, and attended the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts.[1] Both of her parents worked as high school guidance counselors for over 30 years.[4] She obtained a BFA in dance from the California Institute of the Arts.[5]



Laganja Estranja's drag debut was at Micky's West Hollywood on November 7, 2011.[6] After winning the Amateur Competition, Laganja became an official "Showgirl" with a monthly gig at Micky's. Laganja went on to win "Queen of Queens" at 340 Nightclub in Pomona, CA and "Best Newcomer" in West Hollywood.[7]

In April 2013, Laganja Estranja auditioned for RuPaul's Drag Race.[8] She was accepted in the show, and filmed in the summer of 2013. In 2014, the sixth season of drag-oriented reality competition RuPaul's Drag Race aired on LogoTV.[9] Laganja performed moderately well on the show, winning a challenge when she was partnered with the eventual runner-up, Adore Delano.[10] Laganja was eliminated in the eighth episode of the season, placing her in a small category of contestants in the show's history who were eliminated the week after winning a challenge.[10] At the outset of the show, Laganja received quite a lot of attention on social media for her entrance.[11] During the show, Laganja became infamous for her over-the-top dramatics, catchphrases, and emotional breakdowns. Eventual winner Bianca Del Rio credited Laganja as the root of every memorable quote from the following season of RuPaul's Drag Race.[12] Laganja's mannerisms have since been parodied by fellow drag queens, including Alaska Thunderfuck.[13]

Laganja Estranja is the drag daughter of Alyssa Edwards, and the drag sister of Shangela[9] and Plastique Tiara —all of whom competed on RuPaul's Drag Race, Edwards appearing on season 5 and season 2 of RuPaul's Drag Race: All Stars, Shangela appearing on season 2 and 3 and All Stars season 3, and Tiara on season 11. Under the moniker of the Haus of Edwards, they have internationally toured and performed together on multiple occasions,[14] most notably at the pre-show warm-up for the finale episode of the seventh season of RuPaul's Drag Race.[15] Laganja currently hosts her own web show on the drag-centric platform World of Wonder, the same production company behind RuPaul's Drag Race, RuPaul's DragCon LA, and RuPaul's DragCon NYC.[16]

Laganja appeared as a Lip-Sync Assassin in the third episode of RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars Season 6, winning the lip-sync against fellow season 6 contestant, Trinity K. Bonet.

She was a featured performer during Jennifer Lopez's performance at the 2022 iHeartRadio Music Awards.[17]


In 2014, Laganja contributed vocals to a cover of RuPaul's "Jealous of My Boogie", for the album RuPaul Presents: The CoverGurlz. Throughout 2014, Laganja was featured on three singles, contributing a rap verse to each song. In 2015, she released her debut single as a lead artist, titled "Legs", which featured American rapper Rye Rye. In June 2015, "Legs" was rated as the third best song by a RuPaul's Drag Race contestant by Pitchfork Media.[18] In June 2015, Laganja was featured on fellow RuPaul's Drag Race star, Alaska Thunderfuck's debut album, Anus, on the track "Gimme All Your Money".[19]

In 2016, she released both her third single "Tease 4U" and a Christmas Album with the Haus of Edwards. Her single on the album is entitled "Green XXXmas," and the video featured exotic dancer Candace Cane.[20] In September 2018, she released her fourth single "Look At Me" featuring J. Tyler, and an accompanying video. The video took a stance against arrests for marijuana possession.[21] In November 2018, she released a lyric video for her fifth single "Smoke Break".[22]

Cannabis advocacy[edit]

As a cannabis rights activist, Laganja has hosted conversations on cannabis legalization at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, and at Impulse in San Francisco.[23] She has also been featured twice in High Times Magazine as well as on the cover of Dope Magazine,[24] making her the first LGBTQ+ advocate on the cover of a cannabis magazine.[25] In 2014, Laganja launched a collection of marijuana-themed merchandise including a jewelry line named Laganja Estranja Is My Enemy.[26] Laganja has also collaborated with Blunted Objects on a marijuana-themed statement necklace.[27]

In September 2018, Laganja was interviewed[28] by Civilized Magazine about her music video[29] for Look at Me that “slammed” the war on drugs. The interview by Civilized — a magazine reported to be for the millions of adults who choose to enjoy cannabis recreationally[30] — covered a number of aspects behind the imagery of Laganja's music video. Leafly, the world's largest cannabis information site, featured Laganja on its in-house podcast in January 2019.[31] The podcast, The Hash, explored, alongside Laganja, topics like homophobia in the cannabis industry and what it's like to often be the only queer person in a room.

The Laganja Estranja lifestyle brand includes a collaboration preroll joint with San Francisco's The Hepburns, called "LAhepburns."[32] Laganja also partnered with FRUIT SLABS, a company making cannabis infused, vegan, real-fruit squares for their 2019 PRIDE collection. Laganja worked with FRUIT SLABS to create a one-of-a-kind flavor to be offered for a limited time.[33]


Graduating from The California Institute of the Arts in 2011 with a bachelor of fine arts degree in dance and choreography, Laganja is a skilled choreographer, teacher, and dancer. A Presidential Scholar in The Arts, Laganja performed her original work “not today” at the Kennedy Center in 2007.[34] Laganja is also a YoungArts Silver Winner[35] and returns every year to the program to mentor high school students in Miami, Florida. Laganja's choreography credits include Germany's Next Top Model, NYC Cosmetics FACE Awards, and for commercial artists such as Miley Cyrus and Brooke Candy.[36]

In mid-2017, Laganja led a dance theatre project on gender expression with artists across Europe assembling in Nottingham, UK for a four-day workshop and showcase exploring the boundaries of gender identity.[37] “G[END]ER” was in collaboration with Backlit Gallery, Kitty Tray, and Nottingham Contemporary. In the fall of 2018, Laganja elaborated on this idea of gender expression with her dance residency at YoungArts.[38] The immersive experience included live vocals, original compositions, and curated set design. In late-2018, Laganja was partnered with the Pérez Art Museum Miami (Pamm)[38] to present the art of drag for a one-day Poplife Social YoungArts Takeover. The event at the world-renowned art museum included an invitation from Laganja herself, “Onto Pamm’s terrace to warm up their dance muscles, ‘sissy that walk’ across the space and participate in a fan dance inspired by traditional Japanese performance.”

In 2016, Laganja's Dance School, an international high-heels masterclass and confidence workshop, was founded with partner Kristen Lovell.[39] The master class has been held in dozens of cities in the United States and as an international experience, has traveled to Manchester, Nottingham, London, Newcastle, Dublin, Lima, Mexico City, and Amsterdam.[40][41] Laganja's Dance School is held weekly at The Basement Center of NoHo in North Hollywood, and a beginning Heels Technique class is held at Downtown Dance and Movement in Downtown Los Angeles.[40] In 2019, the documentary Laganja's Dance School was released. The documentary was directed by Selene Kapsaski and chronicles Laganja Estranja teaching a dance class in London.[42]

Personal life[edit]

Laganja spoke out against Donald Trump while the latter was running for president of the United States, and is committed to continuing to use her platform for social change.[43] In 2021, she came out as a transgender woman.[44]



As lead artist[edit]

Title Year
(featuring Rye Rye)
"Tease 4u" 2016
"Look at Me"

(featuring J. Tyler)

"Smoke Break"

As featured artist[edit]

Title Year
"Got Beat"[47]
(Kraax featuring Laganja Estranja, Cool B. & Lissa Wick)
"Oh No She Better Don't"[48]
(RuPaul featuring Drag Race Season 6 Cast)
"Gold Grill BBQ"[49]
(Krysta Youngs featuring Laganja Estranja & Melanie Fontana)
"Gimme All Your Money[50]
(Alaska Thunderfuck 5000 featuring Laganja Estranja)

Guest appearances[edit]

Title Year Other artist(s) Album
"Jealous of My Boogie"[51] 2014 RuPaul RuPaul Presents: The CoverGurlz
"Gimme All Your Money"[19] 2015 Alaska Thunderfuck Anus



Year Title Role Notes
2021 The Bitch Who Stole Christmas[52] Herself


Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2014 RuPaul's Drag Race Herself (Contestant) Season 6 – 8th place [9]
Untucked Herself Companion show to RuPaul's Drag Race [10]
2015 Skin Wars Herself Season 2 - Guest [53]
2017, 2019 Bong Appétit Herself Season 1, Episode 6 - Guest [54][55]
2018 Germany's Next Topmodel Herself Season 13, Episode 14 - Guest
2018 The Browns Herself Guest appearance [56]
2018–19 So You Think You Can Dance Herself (Contestant) Season 15 [57][58][59]
2019 Queen of Drags Herself (guest) Episode 6
2021 RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars (season 6) Herself "Lip Sync Assassin" (episode 3) [60]
RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars: Untucked (season 3)

Music videos[edit]

Title Year Director Ref.
"Jealous of My Boogie" 2014 Jay Jackson [61]
"Got Beat" 2014 Kristen R. Lovell [62]
"Gold Grill BBQ" 2014 Kristen R. Lovell [63]
"Legs" (featuring Rye Rye) lyric video 2015 Zigmortius [64]
"Gimme All Your Money" (featuring Laganja Estranja) 2016 Justin Andrew Honard [65]
"Green XXXMas" 2016 Kristen R. Lovell [66]

Music video appearances[edit]

Title Year Director Ref.
"No Bueno"
(Angel Haze)
2013 Frank Borin [67]
(Todrick Hall)
2016 Todrick Hall [68]
"Gimme All Your Money"
(Alaska Thunderfuck 5000)
2016 Justin Andrew Honard & Nick Laughlin [69]
"Mask, Gloves, Soap, Scrubs"
(Todrick Hall)
2020 Todrick Hall [70]

Web series[edit]

Year Title Role Notes Ref
2014 Be$tie$ for Ca$h Herself Guest [71]
2018 Wait, What? Herself Guest [72]
2018 Puff Puff Sessions Herself Host [73]
2019 The Pit Stop Herself Guest [74]
2020 Working Out Is a Drag Herself Guest [75]
2020 Bootleg Opinions Herself Guest [76]
2021 Binge Queens Herself Guest [77]
2021 Out of the Closet Herself Guest [78]


  1. ^ a b Tracy, Liz (September 20, 2018). "Jay Jackson, aka Drag Race Star Laganja Estranja, Gets Personal". Miami New Times. Florida. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Jay Evan Jackson". Ancestry Institute. Ancestry. Retrieved November 12, 2022.
  3. ^ @LaganjaEstranja (November 27, 2014). "@k10lovely & I have the coolest parents!! Even they are supportive of the #TeamGanja launch:" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  4. ^ @LaganjaEstranja (November 9, 2021). "It's called being vulnerable and that's just who I am… I grew up with two parents who worked as high school counselors for 30+ years. I was encouraged to wear my heart on my blouse" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  5. ^ "About". Laganja Estranja official website. Retrieved May 16, 2020.
  6. ^ "Laganja Estranja: 3rd Contestant @ Nov. 7 Showgirls! - YouTube". YouTube. Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  7. ^ "The one where Laganja Estranja gets sickening". Trans P.O.V. (Transgender Point of View). July 28, 2017. Retrieved June 7, 2019.
  8. ^ "Laganja Estranja: "Vote for RuPaul's Drag Race Season 6" - YouTube". YouTube. Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  9. ^ a b c Avery, Dan (December 13, 2013). "Meet The Queens Of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 6: Laganja Estranja, Milk, Magnolia Crawford". NewNowNext. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
  10. ^ a b c Reynolds, Daniel (April 11, 2014). "Last Words With RuPaul's Drag Race's Laganja Estranja". The Advocate. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
  11. ^ itsduardo (April 16, 2014), Come on season 6. Let's get sickening! (Laganja Estranja), retrieved May 28, 2019
  12. ^ "Catchphrases of Season 7 – 12 Days of Crowning: RuPaul's Drag Race Season 7" (SKIP TO 3:17). YouTube. May 27, 2015. Retrieved June 24, 2015.
  13. ^ "Walking with Laganja in Nature". YouTube. May 19, 2014. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
  14. ^ "The Haus Of Edwards National Tour April 2015". ITDEvents. December 24, 2014. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
  15. ^ Jacobs, Blake (June 1, 2015). "The Kids BEAT THE WALLS for the Haus of Edwards at RuPaul's Drag Race Grand Finale!". World of Wonder. Retrieved July 7, 2015.
  16. ^ "Puff Puff Sessions". WOW Presents Plus. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  17. ^ Ermac, Raffy (March 23, 2022). "Drag Race Queens Paid Tribute To Jennifer Lopez At Her iHeartRadio Music Awards Performance". Retrieved March 23, 2022.
  18. ^ Emmitt, Andy (June 26, 2015). "The Best and Worst Music of RuPaul's Drag Divas". Pitchfork Media. Archived from the original on November 30, 2016. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
  19. ^ a b "iTunes – Music – Anus – Album by Alaska Thunderfuck". iTunes Store (US). June 23, 2015. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
  20. ^ ""GREEN XXXMAS" Official Music Video by Laganja Estranja - YouTube". YouTube. Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  21. ^ "Look At Me feat. J. Tyler". YouTube. Laganja Estranja YouTube channel. Retrieved September 3, 2018.
  22. ^ "Smoke Break". YouTube. Laganja Estranja YouTube channel. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  23. ^ "CANNABIS". Laganja Estranja. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  24. ^ "DOPE MAGAZINE NORCAL ISSUE #4 SEPTEMBER 2015 "THE ANNIVERSARY ISSUE"". Issuu. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  25. ^ "Laganja Estranja Stars on the Cover of Dope Magazine | "Balancing Gay Rights, Cannabis, and the Pursuit of Happiness" by Sharon Letts". Laganja Estranja. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  26. ^ Schneier, Matthew (September 24, 2016). "Why the Fashion World Is Obsessed With 'RuPaul's Drag Race' (Published 2016)". The New York Times. Retrieved February 5, 2021.
  27. ^ "Laganja Estranja x Blunted Objects Gold Statement Necklace". Blunted Objects. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  28. ^ "Laganja Estranja's Political Imagery Against the War on Drugs Highlighted in New Music Video by Civilized Magazine". Laganja Estranja. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  29. ^ LaganjaEstranja (September 3, 2018), LAGANJA ESTRANJA | "Look At Me" feat. J. Tyler | Official Music Video, retrieved May 28, 2019
  30. ^ "About Civilized". Civilized. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  31. ^ "Drag Queen Laganja Estranja Battles Homophobia in Cannabis Culture". Leafly. January 22, 2019. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  32. ^ Spirus, Dr (October 29, 2018). "Laganja Estranja comes to YASS Magazine". YASS Magazine. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  33. ^ "FRUIT SLABS on Instagram: "This year we are celebrating PRIDE with lots of passion - a new flavor developed in collaboration with the one and only @laganjaestranja ✨…"". Instagram. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  34. ^ Tracy, Liz (September 20, 2018). "Jay Jackson, AKA Drag Race Star Laganja Estranja, Gets Personal". Miami New Times. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  35. ^ "National YoungArts Foundation Season Kicks off with Dance Residency, Community Events and Performances by Jay Jackson of RuPaul's Drag Race and So You Think You Can Dance". Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  36. ^ Hasse, Javier (September 4, 2019). "Cool Cannabis Careers: Laganja Estranja, LGBTQAI+ Marijuana Icon And Performance Artist". Forbes. Retrieved October 31, 2019.
  37. ^ LaganjaEstranja (November 26, 2017), LAGANJA ESTRANJA | End Of Gender | Exploritive Workshop | Nottingham, UK, retrieved May 28, 2019
  38. ^ a b "Laganja Estranja sashays into Pamm". September 3, 2018. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  39. ^ Tracy, Liz (September 20, 2018). "Jay Jackson, AKA Drag Race Star Laganja Estranja, Gets Personal". Miami New Times. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  40. ^ a b edibleslist. "LaGanja Estranja's Dance School | Edibles Magazine™". Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  41. ^ "Jay Jackson". IMDb. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  42. ^ "Laganja's Dance School". MUBI.
  43. ^ "Laganja Estranja of 'RuPaul's Drag Race' Fame Takes Down Donald Trump With Eloquent Speech [Video]". The Inquisitr. October 10, 2016. Retrieved February 5, 2021.
  44. ^ Nolfi, Joey (June 15, 2021). "'RuPaul's Drag Race' star Laganja Estranja comes out as trans: 'I feel so beautiful'".
  45. ^ "iTunes – Music – Legs (feat. Rye Rye) – Single by Laganja Estranja". iTunes Store (US). March 2, 2015. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
  46. ^ ""Hotbox" Preview". June 26, 2015. Retrieved June 26, 2015 – via YouTube.
  47. ^ "iTunes – Music – Got Beat (feat. Laganja Estranja, Cool B. & Lissa Wick) – Single by Kraax". iTunes Store (US). March 3, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
  48. ^ "iTunes – Music – Oh No She Better Don't (feat. The Cast of Rupaul's Drag Race Season 6) – Single by RuPaul & DJ ShyBoy". iTunes Store (US). March 31, 2014. Retrieved June 24, 2015.
  49. ^ "iTunes – Music – Gold Grill BBQ (feat. Laganja Estranja & Melanie Fontana) – Single by Krysta Youngs". iTunes Store (US). July 2, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
  50. ^ "iTunes - Music - Gimme All Your Money (feat. Laganja Estranja) - Single by Alaska Thunderfuck 5000". iTunes Store (US). Retrieved June 22, 2015.
  51. ^ "iTunes – Music – RuPaul Presents the CoverGurlz – Album by RuPaul". iTunes Store (US). January 28, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
  52. ^ Joey Nolfi (October 29, 2021). "RuPaul's new Christmas movie unites the largest Drag Race cast in history". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on October 29, 2021. Retrieved October 29, 2021.
  53. ^ Smothers, Thairin (June 8, 2015). "RuPaul's Drag Race Stars on Skin Wars Season 2". World of Wonder. Retrieved July 7, 2015.
  54. ^ "BONG APPETIT Season 1". Viceland. January 18, 2017. Retrieved January 18, 2017.
  55. ^ "Devil's Lettuce". Video. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  56. ^ Patterson, Denny (November 11, 2021). "'The Browns' Are Back in Town with a Second Season". Out Front Magazine. Retrieved January 10, 2022.
  57. ^ "See 'RuPaul's Drag Race' Alum Laganja Estranja's 'SYTYCD' Audition (VIDEO)". TV Insider. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  58. ^ "Laganja Estranja — BIO". Laganja Estranja. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  59. ^ "Jay Jackson Isn't Done Yet With 'So You Think You Can Dance'". Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  60. ^ Damshenas, Sam (July 1, 2021). "All Stars 6 just delivered one of the most hilarious and sickening Drag Race episodes ever". Gay Times. Retrieved July 1, 2021.
  61. ^ "RuPaul Presents: The CoverGurlz – Laganja Estranja "Jealous of My Boogie" Music Video". January 28, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2015 – via YouTube.
  62. ^ ""Got Beat" – Kraax ft. Laganja Estranja, Cool B & Lissa Wick". March 17, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2015 – via YouTube.
  63. ^ ""Gold Grill BBQ" - Krysta Youngs feat. Laganja Estranja and Melanie Fontana". July 7, 2014. Retrieved July 7, 2014 – via YouTube.
  64. ^ "LEGS feat. Rye Rye". August 30, 2015. Retrieved August 30, 2015 – via YouTube.
  65. ^ ""Gimme All Your Money feat. Laganja Estranja" - Alaska Thunderfuck". April 1, 2016. Retrieved April 1, 2016 – via YouTube.
  66. ^ LAGANJA ESTRANJA | "Green XXXMas" | Official Music Video, retrieved May 28, 2019
  67. ^ "Angel Haze – No Bueno (Official Video)" (SKIP TO 1:49). YouTube. June 10, 2013. Retrieved June 24, 2015.
  68. ^ Tharrett, Matthew (July 21, 2016). "Kim Chi, Willam, Mariah, Alaska And Laganja Get "Expensive" With Todrick Hall". Retrieved April 10, 2020.
  69. ^ Alaska Thunderfuck (April 1, 2016), Gimme All Your Money feat. Laganja Estranja [Official], retrieved May 28, 2019
  70. ^ Mask, Gloves, Soap, Scrubs (Official Video). Todrick Hall. April 29, 2020. Retrieved April 29, 2020.
  71. ^ Alyssa Edwards and Laganja Estranja - Be$tie$ for Ca$h. WOWPresents. July 25, 2014. Retrieved September 25, 2021 – via YouTube.
  72. ^ Physics with Laganja Estranja and Kimora Blac: WAIT, WHAT?. WOWPresents. November 12, 2018. Retrieved September 25, 2021 – via YouTube.
  73. ^ Baranberg, Sarah (January 17, 2018). "Puff Puff Sessions with Laganja Estranja and Gia Gunn Now on WOW Presents Plus!!". World of Wonder. Retrieved September 25, 2021.
  74. ^ Voss, Brandon (May 18, 2019). "Laganja Estranja Has Thoughts About This Week's "RuPaul's Drag Race"". NewNowNext. Retrieved September 25, 2021.
  75. ^ Nguyen, Nikki (May 13, 2020). "Laganja Estranja and Jason Wimberly Werk Their Legs on "Working Out Is a Drag"". World of Wonder. Retrieved September 25, 2021.
  76. ^ Drag Race Season 12 Episode 12 x Bootleg Opinions with Laganja Estranja!. Yuhua Hamasaki. May 16, 2020. Retrieved January 26, 2022 – via YouTube.
  77. ^ SPOILER ALERT: Binge Queens - RuPaul's Drag Race UK Season 3, Episode 1. WOWPresents. September 23, 2021. Retrieved September 24, 2021 – via YouTube.
  78. ^ Laganja: Welcome to the Bungalow, S5 E1, Out of the Closet. RuPaul's Drag Race. November 8, 2021. Retrieved November 15, 2021 – via YouTube.

External links[edit]