Manila Luzon

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Manila Luzon
Manila Luzon Newspaper.jpg
Manila Luzon performing in May 2014
Born Karl Philip Michael Westerberg
(1981-08-10) August 10, 1981 (age 34)
Cottage Grove, Minnesota, United States
Residence Manhattan, New York U.S.

Drag queen
Reality television personality
Graphic designer

Musical career
Genres Pop
Instruments Vocals
Years active 2011–present
Height 178 cm (5 ft 10 in)
Partner(s) Antoine Ashley
(2006–2012; Ashley's death)
Comedy career
Genres Blue comedy, observational comedy,
Subject(s) LGBT culture, Philippine culture, fashion
Influences Imelda Marcos, RuPaul

Manila Luzon (born Karl Philip Michael Westerberg; August 10, 1981[1]) is an American drag queen and reality television personality, a native of Minnesota who now resides in New York City. She is best known as the runner-up of the third season of RuPaul's Drag Race.[2] Her name is a play on words of the capital city (Manila) and the largest island (Luzon) of the Philippines, where her mother was born.[3] His father is an American of German and Swedish ancestry.[4]

RuPaul's Drag Race[edit]

With a high sense of camp humor, Manila received high marks from the judges throughout the third season of competition. Highlights of the season included her win for a controversial impersonation of a Japanese reporter and forming the "Heathers" clique (the group taking its name from the popular cult film, Heathers) with fellow contestants Raja, Carmen Carrera, and Delta Work. She also won an emotionally charged lip sync against contestant Delta Work. Other memorable challenge wins included making over a heterosexual jock into her drag sister and making a couture dress out of paper money.

Career after RuPaul's Drag Race[edit]

The publicity generated by her participation on the show brought many new opportunities to perform at various national and international LGBT events throughout the U.S. and Canada including New York Pride and Vancouver Pride. She has also been active in AIDS awareness and activism. After being featured in a Gilead Sciences ad titled "Red Ribbon Runway" with fellow Drag Race co-stars Carmen Carrera, Delta Work, Shangela Laquifa Wadley and Alexis Mateo,[5] the dress she wore was featured wearing was auctioned off by Logo in commemoration of World AIDS Day. Proceeds from the auction were donated to the National Association of People with AIDS.[6] In 2011, Luzon, along with third season Drag Race contestants Carmen Carrera and Shangela Laquifa Wadley, appeared in a television commercial for travel-related website Orbitz.[7] In addition to the commercial, she and Shangela also did an entertainment news segment for US Weekly where they discuss current male celebrities and reimagine them as drag queens.[8] In August 2012, NiniMomo, a Long Island-based company specializing in poseable fashion dolls, released a doll in Luzon's likeness and wearing the now famous pineapple dress she wore during his time on Drag Race. The doll, which was available via special order, marked the first and only time a Drag Race contestant has been immortalized as a doll.[9][10] That is until, two years later, a couple of fans of Manila produced their very own 3D-printed Manila Luzon doll.[11]

RuPaul's Drag U[edit]

Manila served as a drag professor on RuPaul's Drag U. Appearing in three episodes, she helped makeover a housewife looking for a makeover in the first episode. In her second appearance, she made over a lesbian contestant, while in her third stint as a drag professor, she helped makeover her sister Rachel.

RuPaul's All Stars Drag Race[edit]

Manila performing "D.J. Girl" by Katalina in May 2014.

On 6 August 2012, it was announced that Manila was one of twelve past Drag Race contestants selected to join the cast of RuPaul's All Stars Drag Race that premiered on the Logo network on 22 October 2012.[12] Paired with contestant Latrice Royale to form Team Latrila, the duo was eliminated in the third episode of the series that aired on 5 November 2012. Prior to the airing of the series finale, Manila (along with All Stars contestants Raven, Latrice Royale, and Tammie Brown) appeared in a television commercial for travel website Orbitz's new portal for LGBT leisure travel.[13]

MTV's Made[edit]

On 12 October 2012, Manila appeared on an episode of the MTV series Made where she mentored a young man in the art of drag, allowing him to explore his drag alter-ego as he prepared for New York City's Gay Pride Parade.[14]


On 8 November 2011, Manila released her first single, "Hot Couture". Her sophomore single, "Best XXXcessory," was released on 21 August 2012. Her third single, "The Chop," a duet between Manila and Latrice Royale was released on 6 November 2012, a day after the episode that featured their elimination from RuPaul's All-Stars Drag Race aired. Along with other RuPaul's Drag Race contestants, Manila appeared in the music video "Queen" by Mimi Imfurst's band Xelle.[15] On 30 September 2014, Manila released her new single "Eternal Queen" to her YouTube account, which is dedicated to her deceased partner, Sahara Davenport.[16] The video received over 30,000 views in just under a week.[17]

Personal life[edit]

A longtime resident of New York City, she resided in Harlem with her boyfriend Antoine Ashley (Sahara Davenport), who was a contestant on the second season of Drag Race. Antoine died of heart failure at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore on October 1, 2012.[18]


Studio albums[edit]

Title Details
Eternal Queen

Extended plays[edit]

Title Details
Hot Couture (Remixes)
  • Released: April 24, 2012[20]
  • Label: Karl Westerberg
  • Formats: Digital download
Best Xxxcessory: The Remixxxes
  • Released: October 22, 2012[21]
  • Label: Manila Luzon
  • Formats: Digital download
The Chop Remixes
  • Released: December 26, 2012[22]
  • Label: Manila Luzon
  • Formats: Digital download
Bring It!, Remixes, Pt. 1
  • Released: January 17, 2014[23]
  • Label: JRED Music
  • Formats: Digital download
Helen Keller
  • Released: January 28, 2014[24]
  • Label: Peace Bisquit
  • Formats: Digital download
Bring It!, Remixes, Pt. 2
  • Released: March 14, 2014[25]
  • Label: JRED Music
  • Formats: Digital download


Title Year Album
"Hot Couture"[26] 2011 Non-album singles
"Best XXXcessory"[27] 2012
"The Chop"[28]
(featuring Latrice Royale)
"Bring It!"[29]
(featuring Jinkx Monsoon)
"Helen Keller"[24]
(featuring Roxy & Richie Beretta)


  1. ^ "Person Details for Karl Philip Michael Westerberg, "Minnesota, Birth Index, 1935-2002" —". 
  2. ^ RuPaul's Drag Race' Grand Finale: A Photo Recap Celebration from 26 April 2011
  3. ^ Getting Personal With Manila Luzon from Next Magazine 5 May 2011
  4. ^ Twin Cities native competing on RuPaul’s Drag Race, premieres tonight from 24 January 2011
  5. ^ Red Ribbon Runway. 2011-07-26. Event occurs at 0:39. 
  6. ^ Spargo, Chris (2011-12-01). "NOW: Red Ribbon Runway Auction". NewNowNext. Logo. Retrieved 2011-12-02. 
  7. ^ Orbitz Commercial - Rupaul's Drag Race Cast on YouTube
  8. ^ See Brad, Rob, Jake, Zac Reinvented as Drag Queens! on 'US Weekly 25 April 2011
  9. ^ NiniMomo: Manila Luzon from
  10. ^ Manila Luzon Gets Her Very Own Doll from 12 August 2012
  11. ^ I Learned How to 3D Print a Drag Queen So You Don’t Have To from
  12. ^ Ru Paul's All Stars Drag Race cast includes Jujubee, Latrice Royale, Manila Luzon from; 06 August 2012
  13. ^ The Queens Take Vacation Back: Orbitz Behind The Scenes from 12 November 2012
  14. ^ Manila Luzon Makes MTV Debut On 'Made' Friday, October 12 from 12 October 2012
  15. ^ Spargo, Chris (25 October 2012). "XELLE’s ‘Queen’ Music Video Features Every ‘Drag Race’ Queen: Watch October 25, 2012 ● by Chris Spargo". New Now Next. Retrieved 6 March 2013. 
  16. ^ "Manila Luzon - Interview". Retrieved 1 November 2014. 
  17. ^ Manila Luzon – ETERNAL QUEEN [official]. YouTube. 30 September 2014. 
  18. ^ Spargo, Chris. "Sahara Davenport’s Family Releases Official Statement". NewNowNext. Retrieved 3 October 2012. 
  19. ^ "iTunes - Music - Eternal Queen by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  20. ^ "iTunes - Music - Hot Couture (Remixes) by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  21. ^ "iTunes - Music - Best Xxxcessory: The Remixxxes by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  22. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Chop Remixes by Manila Luzon & Latrice Royale". iTunes. 
  23. ^ "iTunes - Music - Bring It!, Remixes, Pt. 1 (feat. Jinkx Monsoon) by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  24. ^ a b "iTunes - Music - Helen Keller (feat. Roxy & Richie Beretta) by Cazwell & Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  25. ^ "iTunes - Music - Bring It!, Remixes, Pt. 2 (feat. Jinkx Monsoon) by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  26. ^ "iTunes - Music - Hot Couture - Single by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  27. ^ "iTunes - Music - Best XXXcessory - Single by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 
  28. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Chop - Single by Manila Luzon & Latrice Royale". iTunes. 
  29. ^ "iTunes - Music - Bring It! (feat. Jinkx Monsoon) - Single by Manila Luzon". iTunes. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
RuPaul's Drag Race runner-up
Season 3 (2011)
Succeeded by
Chad Michaels & Phi Phi O'Hara