Mariah Paris Balenciaga is the stage name of Elijah Kelly, a drag queen, hairstylist, makeup artist and performer from Gainesville, Georgia. She competed on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 3, placing 9th.
On May 8, 2020, it was announced that she would be competing in All Stars 5. She was eliminated in the third episode, placing 8th in the competition overall.
Drag Name Origin
Mariah was given to her by the father of the House of Armani who recruited her in the ballroom scene. It rhymes with her boy name Elijah so it was easy for her to remember. She was Mariah Armani and then Mariah Balenciaga when she became one of the founding members of the House of Balenciaga. Paris is from her drag family name.
RuPaul's Drag Race
|Season Competed||Season 3||All Stars 5|
|Ranking:||9th Place||8th Place|
|Mini-Challenges Won:||1 (Ep. 3)||0|
|Times as Team Captain:||1 (Ep. 3)||0|
|Times Placed High||1 (Ep. 3)||0|
|Main Challenges Won:||0||0|
|Times Placed Low||2 (Eps. 4, 5)||0|
|Times in Bottom:||1 (Ep. 6)||2 (Eps. 2, 3)|
|Episode Eliminated||Episode 6||Episode 3|
Mariah was eliminated in the 6th episode of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 3. The main challenge was for the queens to do their best celebrity impersonations in the Snatch Game. Mariah chose to impersonate Joan Crawford. She was critiqued for being too toned down and too quiet to be Joan Crawford. The queens and the judges both thought her makeup was too harsh. Mariah was put into the bottom two with Delta Work. Delta outshined Mariah, and Carmen Carrera commented that Mariah did not know the lyrics to the song. Mariah was sent home, placing 9th overall.
All Stars 5
Mariah had a spoken word act for the first challenge, which was the Variety Show. She was safe, but her performance was praised by guest judge Ricky Martin and many fans believe she should have won the challenge.
For the second episode, the challenge was to write lyrics and perform them to "I'm in Love!". Mariah was picked by Shea Couleé to be on her team. Mariah was criticized for not standing out, but praised for both her runway look and performance look. Carson Kressley stated that he liked Mariah's performance look more than her actual performance. She placed in the bottom three along with India Ferrah and Ongina, but was saved from elimination. Shea Couleé won the challenge, while Ongina was sent home.
All Stars 5
- "In a room full of 10s, I'm always grand prize."
- "My name is Mariah, aka Mariah Paris, aka Mariah Successful."
- "Her look is definitely not polished, it's definitely not fabulous; it's almost as if I went into my granny's trunk in the attic." (in reference to Raja's cyclops hat entrance.)
- "When it comes to going out in drag in the day time, I'm good. 'Cause baby, if it's right, it's right."
- "Miss Venus? You're too young, baby, to have that much work in your face. That much wrong work." (Referring to Venus D-Lite's plastic surgery to look more like Madonna)
- I'm tired of seeing patches and blotches of highlight here and there. No, ma'am!. Girl smooth that shit out, blend it out." (referring to Shangela in Untucked Season 3, Episode 2. "Queen in Space".)
- "I look like I got like, fix-a-flat in my face?"
- "You know what? I have thick skin, but that is your one free pass bitch!"
- "I'm the Milk-Maid."
- "Prepare to gag on my eleganza!" (as Boobarella in Season 3, Episode 2 challenge" Queens in Space".)
- "A pineapple gown with glitter on it, bitch! Girl, I just can't take this. It's too much. Get my pocketbook I'm leaving." (referring to Manila Luzon's pineapple gown in Untucked.)
- "Were you really born a genetic woman?" (to Kristen Cavallari in Episode 3 "QNN News")
- "Uhm, I'm in the bottom 3 and I'm still just pretty.... next on news at 10!" (to Raja in Snatch Game Untucked.)
- "We are the ones who are innovators, and the driving force behind progress in humanity."
- "Elephant shoe, Honey..*Laugh*, cantaloupe, and shalabalabatuna."(referring to her not knowing the words to Jody Watley's "Looking for a New Love."
- "I saw the fishnets and they were ripped." (to Shangela referring to Mimi Imfurst.)
- "I'm feeling entertained, amused."
- "It's gonna be hell getting the bags back home." (after her elimination).
- "Congratulations, RAJA!!!" (mirror message after her elimination).
- "I'm Shannel and I wear costumes." (About Shannel's outfit in Drag-U)
All Stars 5
- "Come on Grandma Barbie!" (to Jujubee)
- "I'm Mariah Balenciaga, aka Mariah Paris, aka Mariah Successful, aka Miss Queen of All Stars Season 5."
- "Shea Couleé, why so emotional, baby?" (reading Shea Couleé in the Reading is Fundamental challenge) While throwing rose petals
- "The marks. The stains. My words I shall not refrain. From veins, the pain flows of those chained. Stains from the fights for rights, freedom's still not in sight. Stains from clashes and lashes. Stains on the walls of those with voice, power, and pride. Stains of those who refused to be silenced or hide. Stains on the wall of those feared and misunderstood. Stains of those who were told who to love. How to love, how to act. Religious veils sanctify that. Retaliation to a terror born of this nation. Stains of those who lived through segregation. Will we transcend and ascend, will the fear and hate will ever end? That's the greatest question of all... Until then, I'll continue to tell the story of the stains on the wall." (Her spoken word talent for the Variety Show)
- "I wish I could’ve done this to a jackass." (when she was voting for the queen to be eliminated)
- "Bitch, you gonna get those off? You deserve to rest your digits." (to India Ferrah)
- "Girl, who is pussy pink?" (referring to Blair St. Clair's skin runway look)
- ''Girl, what was that? I was like is she doing the Finding Dory whale call? *whale noises* I was like bitch! Oh, no!'' (about Ongina's voice in the recording of her ''I'm In Love'' verse)
- "I love two-star hotels!"
- ”Girthy meats and cheeses.“
- ''My tear conducts have turned into raisins.''
- ''My mind is a fishbowl with nothing in it but peebles and vodka.''
- She started doing drag when she was 18 years old during a Halloween party.
- Mariah has been doing drag since 1999 or 2000, as she mentioned on the first episode of Season 3 that she had been doing drag for 11 years.
- Mariah is a hairstylist full-time out of drag.
- She is sometimes confused with San Francisco drag queen Mahlae Balenciaga.
- On Season 2, Mariah appeared in two episodes of RuPaul's Drag U.
- Mariah is a frequent guest on Kimora Blac's show "Wait, What?". She has also been a guest multiple times on Fashion Photo RuView, filling in for Raja or Raven.
- She was on the US and UK versions of "Lip Sync Battle", performing with Rita Ora and Nico Tortorella.
- She was an extra in The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.
- She was in the music videos for Lizzo's "Juice" and Aly & AJ's "Star Maps".
- She is the third queen to compete in All Stars to be eliminated in the Snatch Game of her original season, after Gia Gunn and Monique Heart, who competed in All Stars 4.
- Although she was safe, Ricky Martin congratulated her on her All Stars 5 Talent Show.
- She is the second queen to do a Spoken Word show on an All Star Variety Show, after Tatianna in All Stars 2.
- Though she was known and referred to by just her first name on Season 3, Mariah goes by her full drag name on All Stars 5.
- She has the same season stats as her friend Kimora Blac from Season 9.
- If Mariah would have made it to the Snatch Game episode in All Stars 5, she would have done Jackée Harry.
- She launched a line of scented candles.
- Mariah is one of the 7 queens to compete on more than one season, but only lip-sync once, the other six being Milk, Thorgy Thor, Pandora Boxx, Ongina, Blair St. Clair and Nina Flowers.
- She is the first queen in the franchise to decline their exit interview after being eliminated.
Season 3 Looks
All Stars 5 Looks
4th: Yara Sofia (Miss Congeniality) • 5th: Carmen Carrera • 6th: Shangela • 7th: Delta Work • 8th: Stacy Layne Matthews • 9th: Mariah • 10th: India Ferrah • 11th Mimi Imfurst • 12th: Phoenix • 13th: Venus D-Lite
Jason Carter • Shawn Morales
|2nd & 3rd: Jujubee & Miz Cracker|
|4th: Blair St. Clair • 5th: Alexis Mateo • 6th: India Ferrah • 7th: Mayhem Miller • 8th: Mariah Paris Balenciaga • 9th: Ongina • 10th: Derrick Barry|
|Jason Carter • Bruno Carvalho • Bryce Eilenberg|