It's been 50 years since the Stonewall Riots birthed the global LGBTQIA+ Rights movement, and needless to say, WorldPride intends to commemorate and celebrate like it never has before. As New York gears up for nigh on 3 million revellers descending on the city, we round-up the not-to-be-missed events honouring the rainbow half-century. Get loud, get proud, and fly the flag with Pride.
Nothing says Pride like a fabulous stage show, so enter East Village Off-Off Broadway institution and Tony Award-winning troupe La MaMa, joined by LGBTQ+ artists from NYC, Philadelphia, Paris, Italy, and South Korea to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. The month-long Queer productions roster includes Nia Witherspoon’s Black Panther-era backdropped Messiah, the human rights and gay plight-dramatising Global Gay from Parisian director Salvino Raco, and historical-referencing South Korean production 13 Fruitcakes.
Stonewall 50 at La MaMa / for performance and ticket information / +212 352 3101 / lamama.org
At the southern tip of East River-lying Roosevelt Island sits Four Freedoms Park and its monumental staircase, set to be transformed into the city’s largest pride flag come 15 June. The day is a fam-friendly affair, with food trucks and picnic blankets on the lawn, plus drag queen story hour at 12.30pm. Attendance is free, and the 12ftx100ft flag will stay in place until the closure of the festival on June 30.
Ascend with Pride / visit eventbrite.com to register
Officially kicking off the WorldPride festival is the always delicious, relatively tame Pier 97-staged Garden Party event, where the city’s star chefs and top tables join together under the setting sun for an evening of seasonal eats, delectable drinks, and of course, dancing into the night. Hosted by the stellar LGBT Community Center, proceeds help support its ongoing services to people in need within the community.
Garden Party / Pier 97 / Hudson River Park (cross at W 59th Street) / 6-10pm, 24 June / gaycenter.org
Undoubtedly one of the highlights of the annual Pride calendar, Pride Island brings together all that is grand about the event itself: outrageous costumes, boundless energy, all-inclusive ethos and incredible music. And who better to headline this most important of years’ line-ups than style and gender non-conformist and trailblazer, Grace Jones. Still one of the world’s most captivating performers at 71 years old, Jones is joined by Kim Petras, Teyana Taylor, Pabllo Vittar, Amara La Negra, myriad DJs and revellers galore.
Pride Island Music Festival / Pier 97 / 59th Street & West Side Highway / from 2pm, 29-30 June / nycpride.frontgatetickets.com
For more Gotham tips n' tricks around Pride month and beyond, check out the LUXE NYC guide quicksticks.
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