With the Pride in London parade postponed until September (cheers, Covid), Pride celebrations have taken a bit of a knock this year. But, as ever, London finds a way! Here, The Resident picks out the best ways to mark Pride 2021 in London…
1 Wand-Activated Walking Tour of Soho
Greek Street’s Wands & Wizard Exploratorium has launched a magical tour of Soho featuring interactive window displays where dragon eggs glow, thunderclouds pulse and rainbows sparkle – all activated by a magic wand. The windows form part of a self-guided walking tour of Soho, in partnership with Mermaids, and highlight queer history in and around London’s most vibrant LGBTQ+ district. To take part, just buy a Magical Map and borrow or buy a magic wand to trigger the interactive window displays. Maps, wands, and charity t-shirts are available online or from The Wands & Wizard Exploratorium in Soho. Additionally, venues can opt to be included on the Magical Map as a Safe Space.
Book in person at the Wizard Exploratorium, 26 Greek Street, Soho W1D 5DE or online at magicalmap.io
2 Mama G’s Family Pride Party at Stanley Arts, South Norwood
Stanley Arts in South Norwood is hosting two Pride events with Petite Pantos and Lemon Jelly Creative. Mama G’s Family Pride Party and Pride After Hours both celebrate the core of Petite Pantos values: be who you are and love who you want. Mama G’s Family Pride Party offers entertainment and activities for all of the family from 12pm to 6pm, with pay-what-you-can tickets to attend in person or watch via Zoom. Pride After Hours, for the grown-ups only, takes over from 7pm to midnight with added alcohol (and still pay-what-you-can tickets). Enjoy the likes of Pride Panto, Drag Aerobics, Story Time with Mama G, arts and crafts, a Pride Choir, comedy from Katie Pritchard, Kayleigh Jones and Harry Wright, and more. Both events are raising money for the charity Mermaids.
12 South Norwood Hill SE25 6AB; stanleyarts.org
3 Pride Month with FRAME, various locations
London-based fitness studio FRAME has launched a series of fun classes designed to celebrate Pride, led by the studio’s leading LGBTQ+ instructors. Set over a number of the London studios, as well as a livestream class (Pride Dance Cardio at 6pm), FRAME has re-imagined a number of its most popular classes to create a super fun workout with a mega Pride playlist. In Shoreditch at 12.45pm it’s Pride Dance Studio; in Fitzrovia at 10.45am it’s Pride Rebounding; in King’s Cross at 9am it’s Pride Reformer Pilates; in Angel at 11.15am it’s Pride Dance Cardio and in Victoria at 11.15am it’s Pride Dance Cardio and Pride Rebounding at 12:30pm. The profits from each class will go to the instructor’s chosen charity, with Mermaids, Just Like Us, GLAAD and AKT to benefit.
To book see moveyourframe.com
4 Backyard Cinema Celebrates Pride, Wandsworth
Until 4 July
Experiential cinema venue Backyard Cinema is showcasing 10 of the greatest LGBTQ+ movies ever-made this June in celebration of Pride. Films include the Oscar-winning Moonlight, coming- of-age romantic drama, Call Me By Your Name, ballroom extravaganza Paris is Burning, gender-queer punk rock musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch, epic Elton John musical fantasy Rocket Man, and heart-warming British fashion story Kinky Boots. Movie lovers can watch the films in either of Backyard Cinema’s immersive destination experiences – Miami Beach (all sunshine, blue seas and art deco glamour) or LA Nights (board Backyard Airlines for sun-kissed Los Angeles). Tickets from £19.99.
Capital Studios, Ram Quarter, 13 Wandsworth Plain SW18 1ET; backyardcinema.co.uk
5 Staircase at Southwark Playhouse, Elephant & Castle
23 June-17 July
Staircase by Charles Dyer (1928-2021) was a West End and Broadway hit at its premiere in the late 60s. The comedy hasn’t been seen in London for more than half a century, but Two’s Company, which excels at bringing back forgotten masterpieces, is bringing the production back this month. Starring Paul Rider (Chicago, A Woman of No Importance) and John Sackville (An Inspector Calls, The Crown), Staircase follows the story of Charlie and Harry, hairdressers in Brixton in the early 60s who have been together for 20 years. Same-sex relationships are illegal, but quick humour and dreams keep them afloat until Charlie is arrested for sitting on a man’s knee in a pub. Tickets from £14.
77-85 Newington Causeway, Elephant & Castle SE1 6BD; southwarkplayhouse.co.uk
6 Pride Month at Rooftop Film Club at Roof East, Stratford
Until 30 June
Every Wednesday throughout Pride Month, Rooftop Film Club at Roof East is celebrating the LGBTQ+ community with great films, lots of glitter and cupcakes. Don your boldest pair of glasses for Elton John’s Rocketman on 16 June; celebrate the art of drag with The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert on 23 June; or watch 2017’s Oscar-winning Best Picture coming of age film Moonlight on 30 June. Add some sparkle to your night out with rainbow makeup and glitter beards, provided by a makeup artist in the lead up to the selected films (free and available on a first-come-first-served basis). Plus, on 23 and 30 June you can also enjoy a complimentary Pride Cupcake from Lola’s Cupcakes. Screenings from 9.15pm, tickets from £14.95.
Level 8, Stratford Multi-storey Car Park, Great Eastern Way E15 1XE; rooftopfilmclub.com
7 #SwitchOnLove Ball at ROWBOTS City
Experiential fitness brand ROWBOTS is throwing a #SwitchOnLove Ball to celebrate Pride Month and raise funds for UK-based charities Mermaids and Stonewall. The event, taking place at ROWBOTS City, will consist of a 90-minute special edition Balance Class split into three sections – 30 minutes of mobility, 30 minutes of rower/floor intervals and a 30-minute mindset and meditation session, led by special guest and meditation expert, CK. After the event, you’ll be treated to complimentary ‘Bots Beverages’ and Bubbles from The Reboot Bar, plus nibbles and other treats from their partners. From 12pm, priced £22.
Book via rowbots.co.uk or donate at gofund.me
8 Lola’s Cupcakes’ Pride Range
Until 30 September
Lola’s is waving the rainbow flag with its new limited-edition Pride cupcakes range. Crafted with passion and packaged with care, the Pride Cupcakes, which cost £19.20 for a box of six, come with either a chocolate or vanilla sponge base (or a mix of the two), decorated with colourful buttercream, sprinkles, rainbow sweets and topped with a hand-piped ‘Pride’. A selection of rainbow-layer cakes are also available to buy as part of the collection. Ten percent of all revenue raised from the range will go to Switchboard, the LGBTQ+ helpline. Available online and in stores until 30 September 2021.
9 stream.theatre’s Pride Month Productions
stream.theatre, the world’s first digital venue created by ROYO and Broadway on Demand, has launched three landmark productions to celebrate Pride Month. From Jeff Whitty, the creator of Avenue Q, and the Scissor Sisters’ Jake Shears and John Garden comes Tales of the City, The Musical (running 21-27 June), based on Armistead Maupin’s landmark series of novels about San Francisco in the 70s. From 14-27 June there’s Cruise, fresh from its sell-out live West End production, where it was described as ‘Life Affirming’ by The Telegraph and ‘stunning’ by The Guardian. Then there’s Hushabye Mountain (streaming from 18-20 June), which tells the tale of Danny, a young man, waiting to be let into heaven following his death from AIDS.
10 Pure Sport’s Pure Pride Fitness Club, Clapham Common
Wellness brand Pure Sport is hosting a fully inclusive outdoor workout event for Pride Month on Monday 28 June. Taking place on Clapham Common, the Pure Sport Fitness Club event will be led by Baz Gouldsbury, an active member of the LGBTQ+ community and passionate advocate for greater equality within sport. The workout will be for all abilities with an array of great coaches and team members available to help with the session. The event falls appropriately on the 52nd anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, recognised as the beginning of the fight for LGBTQ+ rights worldwide. While the event itself is free, Pure Sport has created a Just Giving Page to raise money for the charity. 6.30pm-7.30pm.
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