Inspired by the success of Nathaniel Hall’s First Time, and the popularity of subsequent activities marking World Aids Day, Sale Waterside Arts made plans for a series of events that celebrate and explore LGBTQ+ life in Trafford. They worked in collaboration with Trafford Council, Creative Industries Trafford, Contact Theatre, and many others, to create a meaningful programme of events. The inaugural Pride in Trafford festival will showcase a wide range of LGBTQ+ artists over five days, running from Wednesday 15th – Sunday 19th May.
Offering something different to larger planned events like Manchester Pride, there is a strong community feel to Pride in Trafford. Community activities form the foundations of the festival. The Mayor of Trafford and children from Springfield Primary School will be raising the rainbow flag outside Sale’s Town Hall on Friday 17th May, to mark the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT).
Other community events include a Pride Bike Ride on Saturday 18th May, and Rainbow Reflections, an evening of activities run by young LGBTQ+ people from The Proud Trust. There will be a panel discussion, Queer on Screen, addressing the inequalities in representation for LGBTQ+ and BAME characters across the media. There will also be Rapid HIV Testing available, encouraging people to know their HIV status.
In addition to these community activities will be an exciting programme of music, theatre, comedy, and art. All events at Pride in Trafford have an emphasis on nurturing local LGBTQ+ talent. Local artist, Youcef Hadjazi, will be launching his exhibition Portraits of Others, a series of photographs of individuals from Muslim backgrounds exploring gender and sexuality.
Music headliner, Youngr, grew up in Trafford and has racked up over 34 million streams on Spotify, selling out tours across Europe and America. He will be supported by Benedict Cork.
On Friday 17th May, there will be a triple-headliner comedy night. Tom Allen, is best known for his appearances on Mock The Week, 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, and Live at the Apollo. His camp, riotous comedy is delivered with sharp, sarcastic wit. He will be joined by Bethany Black, who will bring her decidedly dark, deliciously different humour to the stage of Sale Waterside. The evening will be closed by Annette Fagon, a rising star of the comedy circuit, whose comedy varies from mental health to her anger management issues. This promises to be a cracking night!
Theatre highlights include Trans Creative: Breaking Ground, a scratch night for transgender and non-binary performers curated by leading transgender artist Kate O’Donnell, artistic director of Trans Creative. Several Raze Up development workshops, networking opportunities and showcases, will take place, presented in partnership with Contact Theatre.
The Cocoa Butter Club will also be bringing their unique mixture of cabaret, burlesque, circus, spoken work, live music, voguing, and comedy. Celebrating and showcasing LGBTQ+ performers of colour, this show will provide much needed representation of artists who are hugely marginalised and discriminated in an industry that lacks equality.
With this wide range of events happening around Sale Waterside Arts, Pride in Trafford offers something for everybody. Most importantly, it offers exposure and opportunities for the local LGBTQ+ community.