The performer behind Katya, the beloved season 7 and All Stars 2 star of Drag Race, has announced a hiatus from drag.
Real name Brian McCook, he made an Instagram live video last night spoken entirely in French.
He opened up about his mental health struggle, saying: ‘I’m not dying because I want to live.’
It came as some messages, sent out in the last few weeks, have also had his followers concerned.
McCook has previously opened up about struggling with staying sober from drugs and alcohol.
Katya reads open letter in French announcing hiatus
In the open letter to fans, he said: ‘Hi, it’s Katya. This is a message transmitted in French, if you’re not French this is not going to make any sense to you.
‘In French, I’m going to talk about David Lynch, and also about my health.
‘There is no emergency, there is no emergency. But I needed to take a little break. It was time to take a vacation, because my health, the drugs, my brain, that wasn’t good.
‘If you’re French, this will make perfect sense.
‘I speak French, but I never have the opportunity to practice speaking French because I’m always busy, I’m always working. I work a lot.
‘I’m a language student first, an artist second, a drag queen third.’
He adds: ‘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.
‘You have to understand me. In the future, I need to take more vacations, I’m a person, I’m a human. You need to hear 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.
‘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.’
‘I’m not dying because I want to live.’
Trying to ease the fears of fans, McCook said: ‘I’m ok. I’m not dying because I want to live.
‘But I need to take vacations, like a normal person. The people who are listening will understand, can understand. And that’s all I wanted to say, that’s all. In French, because it’s the language of knowledge. All languages are languages of knowledge, but I speak in French because I need to speak slowly to speak correctly.
‘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.
‘The most important is that I keep coming back.’
‘I need to take a vacation because…my brain doesn’t work anymore.’
Responding to fans asking why he was speaking French, he said: ‘I speak French because it’s a language I understand fluently, better than Russian, Spanish, and Japanese. That’s all.
‘In French, I need to say, I’m human. That’s all. It’s a joke for Americans, for French people, it’s not.
‘I love French, I’ve always loved French. I learned French because I love French. Today, right now, I tell you “bonjour.”
‘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 will understand. We’ll see, and I wish you a good day. Bye bye.’
The Katya and Trixie Show on Viceland is scheduled to return on 24 January.