Ticket Launch Review

Tuesday 3 May 2011

GHT LGF at ticket launch 2011WRITTEN BY ANDREW ROBERTS

On the August Bank Holiday of 1991 a bring & buy fundraising event was held outside The Rembrandt Hotel on Canal Street. This was the start of something, something that would become the biggest events in Manchester’s calendar. Pride. Fast forward 21 years (and a few name changes later) Manchester Pride is getting set to return ‘Louder & Prouder’ than before.

Taurus Bar was the host for the launch of this summer’s event. A huge M and P were stationed outside for people to have their photos taken with. Pictured are staff from George House Trust and the Lesbian & Gay Foundation with the letters. Were these hinting to what was lined up for Pride?

Jackie Crozier, the festival’s director took to the stage to let us in to what we could expect from the event. There are a few elements for Pride’s 21st birthday but one thing seemed to be very important; community, even though thousands of people will come for Pride, it should feel like an intimate gathering. Everyone should feel like they’ve been involved.

So, what can we expect? Here are a few hints as to what is coming:

  • The Lowry will be holding the “Queer to Stay” exhibition which will chart the 21 year history of Manchester Pride through memorabilia and stories. It will show the impact that the festival has had on people, charities and community groups.
  • Fringe – so far over 40 events have been programmed. Although these have not yet been revealed, I’m sure there will be some great things to see and do. I shall no doubt let you know about the goings on soon.
  • The Big Weekend – Here’s the numbers bit... 55 lifestyle stalls, 45 market stalls, 4 days, 3 stages, 2 video screens, 1 great big hangover. I’m excited already. You’ll have noticed the addition of video screens, 1 will be stationed in the main arena and 1 will be stationed in Sackville Gardens. If, like me last year, you only got to see Kelis’ tinsel wig with the aid of binoculars then this is great news! No details of the performers yet, these will be announced in due course. Hmmm, I wonder who it’ll be.
  • The Parade – Best of British has been chosen as the theme and participants have been encouraged to think outside of the box. With the Royal Wedding now a distant memory, this is another chance to dig out the Union Jack bunting. Expect around 100 floats to snake around the city leaving a glitter wake in their trail.
  • The Vigil – This is a very emotional event as people gather to remember friends, family or partners that they have lost to the HIV virus. Manchester Pride is the only festival to hold a Vigil and long may this part of the calendar continue.
  • Bring & Buy – in a nod to the very 1st “Pride” in 1991, there will be a bring & buy sale on the Sunday of the Big Weekend.

What else can I tell you? You’ll have noticed the new look website, and you would have probably seen the ‘Loud & Proud’ posters around the Village. You can also get involved. Volunteers are required and you can apply here. Finally you can buy your tickets now, yes right now. They are on sale from the usual outlets.

Tagged inBehind the scenesLaunch 2011

A celebration of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender life

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