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A Guide to the Bristol Pride Festival 2017

A Guide to the Bristol Pride Festival 2017

4 July 2017 |

It’s that time of year again, so dig out the rainbow-coloured flags and get set to take to the streets for the annual Bristol Pride festival! The festivities taking place across the city promote equality and diversity while boasting a jam-packed programme of cultural activities and spectacular events. From improvised theatre and Pride comedy, to film screenings and huge musical acts, get into the spirit of Pride with this LGBT+ cultural extravaganza descending on Bristol this week.

For all those theatre buffs and budding thesps, don’t you dare miss out on Pride Theatre Night on Tuesday 4 July at the Wardrobe Theatre. This year the beloved theatre show has teamed up with local troupe Degrees of Error to put on a special edition of their sell-out Edinburgh Fringe production ‘Murder, She Didn’t Write’; a hilarious, semi-improvised murder mystery set to feature an array of gender-swapped suspects. It’s a whodunnit guaranteed to have the audience rolling in the aisles.


Image Credit: Pride Theatre Night, Bristol Pride
 
And the laughter doesn’t stop as Pride week progresses, as Thursday 6 July sees the stellar performers of Pride Comedy Night take the stage at the Bierkeller. Hosted by Funny Women Award-winner Jayde Adams, the show is due to feature an impressive line-up of comics. Look forward to the acerbic wit and salty sarcasm of American actor and comedian David Mills, as well as the gothic stylings and dark comedy of Bethany Black, whose debut show ‘Beth Becomes Her’ chronicled the story of her being transgender, from transitioning to falling in love.
 
Filmgoers will be inordinately excited about the Queer Vision film festival, taking place this week and lovingly curated by Bristol Pride. There’s a range of films on show this year – one of the highlights is Miles, showing at the Watershed on Sunday 9 July. This funny and moving film follows the out-and-proud teenage protagonist Miles, and his attempts to get out of small town America through – of all things – a volleyball scholarship. Based on a true story, it’s an uplifting watch laced with nineties nostalgia and heart-warming moments.


Image Credit: Miles, Bristol Pride
 
The final weekend of Bristol Pride is set to start with a Friday night line-up like no other. Kicking off the musical acts will be dreamy electro-pop group Avec Sans, whose energetic live shows have billed them alongside artists like Ladyhawke and the Pet Shop Boys. They will be followed by none other than Katrina (from ‘And The Waves’ fame) who will have you ‘Walking on Sunshine’ with her back catalogue of chart-toppers. All paving the way for a performance from headliner Belinda Carlisle, one of the pop world’s greats and former member of The Go Go’s, who is celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of her triple-platinum album Heaven on Earth this year. Also on Friday, fans of RuPaul's Drag Race will be in for a treat, with appearances from the one and only Sharon Needles as well as Willam Belli in Eat Sleep Drag Repeat at SWX Bristol. 


Image Credit: Belinda Carlisle, Bristol Pride
 
And now to the main event: Pride Day will be taking place on Saturday 8 July at Bristol Harbourside. The largest free Pride in the UK, this is set to be one huge all-out, all-day party. Beginning in the morning, the Pride Parade takes to the streets at 11am and by the look of it there’ll be even more revellers this year than the 6,000 people who lined the streets in 2016. The Parade leads all the way to the outdoor music stage festival area, where the Main Stage will be hosting musical stars like American singer-songwriter Jennifer Paige (remember her global hit ‘Crush’?), Bristol favourites electronic 9-piece Dr Meaker and headliners – drumroll – the boys you went to school for, Busted. But of course, there is so much more to Pride, including the flamboyant fun of the Cabaret Stage, alongside great food, bars and that festival must-have - the Disco Dodge Ball Games Arena, where you can also play some Voguing Volleyball, naturally.


Image Credit: Busted, Bristol Pride
 
The party doesn’t stop there, though, because you can head to the Official Pride Afterparty at the Bristol O2 Academy – where three rooms of DJs and live performances will have you dancing ’til dawn. Alison Limerick will be belting out her club bangers and the locally sourced DJs of Horse Meat Disco are champing at the bit to play their heady mix of classics, italo disco, house, oddities, Afro and punk funk. Or alternatively, head to Hush – Official Girls’ Afterparty at Basement 45 for Gal DJs and all sorts of colourful performances.
 
Bristol Pride Festival is taking place from 29 June – 9 July. Bristol Pride Day is on Saturday 8 July at Bristol Harbourside.

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