5 Ways to Celebrate San Francisco Pride 2021
Mona Ramsey (Mary Birdsong) and Michael "Mouse" Tolliver (Wesley Taylor) move back in to Barbary Lane as A.C.T. streams its 2011 world premiere of Armistead Maupin's 'Tales of the City.' (Kevin Berne)

5 Ways to Celebrate San Francisco Pride 2021


San Francisco has celebrated Pride since 1970 with festivities typically centering on the parade.

In lieu of marching over the last weekend in June, this year's celebration consists of events showcasing the talent of our LGBTQIA+ community all month long.

Commissioned artists, clockwise from top: Jahaira & Angelica; DANDY; J Mase III; Mark Travis Rivera; Lady Dane Figueroa Edidi; Antoine Hunter / Purple Fire Crow.(Courtesy of Fresh Meat)

The 20th Anniversary Fresh Meat Festival

A leading advocate for intersectional justice and equity in the arts, Fresh Meat Productions invests in the creative and cultural expression of transgender and gender-nonconforming communities by way of presenting arts and education programs and commissioning new work. Celebrating 20 years of inspiring programs of dance, theater and music, this year's expanded festival offers world premieres of new work as well as an opportunity to look back at past performances.

The free festival features more than 40 artists and ensembles performing bachata, jaw-dropping vogue, transgender opera, sizzling hip-hop, gay ballroom stars, queer bomba, wordsmith poets, disabled dance pioneers and more.

// June 18-27, freshmeatproductions.org

Revisiting Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City

Welcome back to 28 Barbary Lane! A.C.T. celebrates the 10th anniversary of its 2011 world premiere of Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City by streaming the original production during Pride week to audiences around the world. The musical was directed by Jason Moore, and featured music and lyrics by Scissor Sisters' Jake Shears and John Garden and a book by Tony Award winner Jeff Whitty.

// June 21-27, American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.), act-sf.org

San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus. (Gooch)

Wired for Sound: SF Gay Mens Chorus Presents All-Virtual Showcase

Founded in 1978, SFGMC sparked a nationwide LGBTQ choral movement after its first public performance at a vigil on the steps of City Hall following the assassinations of Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone.

This year's virtual program includes never-before-seen performances including a rousing homage to RuPaul and a performance of Todrick Hall's iconic "Nails, Hair, Hips, Heels," both presented with SFGMC's signature choralography for the first time virtually.

"We are cramming more fun and excitement into our Pride showcase than ever before," says artistic director Timothy Seelig. "We chose "Wired" as our theme because we've been singing through wires for the past year. The singers have been busy behind their cameras creating six brand-new world premiere videos. We will also be hearing from special friends on what Pride means to them, enjoying the talents of three young rising stars, and commemorating the 40th anniversary of the national tour in June 1981."

// June 24, sfgmc.org

Illuminated Pink Triangle Returns to Twin Peaks

The acre-sized illuminated Pink Triangle on Twin Peaks lit up June 1st with the Pink Torch Procession, featuring prominent members of the LGBTQIA+ community led by Dykes on Bikes and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgenc; Mayor Breed symbolically lit the installation. The Pink Triangle's founder, Patrick Carney, has partnered with the arts nonprofit Illuminate, the organization behind last year's lighting.

"We honor Patrick Carney and his quarter-century of creating The Pink Triangle from canvas, working with hundreds of volunteers, a tradition put on pause due to COVID. We are grateful for the opportunity to augment his extraordinary commitment to the LGBTQIA+ movement," says Illuminate CEO Ben Davis.

// Through June 30th, illuminatethepinktriangle.org

Narissa Lee's "We Make This City."(Courtesy of QWOCMAP!

17th Annual Queer Women of Color Festival

This year's Queer Women of Color Film Festival (QWOCMAP) will premiere 19 films in three screenings from June 11th to 13th. The 17th anniversary Festival Focus "Molten Connections" forges new relationships, awakens steadfast bonds of diaspora, and sparks a metamorphosis of love that withstands time. From Chumash ancestors who mapped the stars to two older queer Latinas rekindling a geode of love, to queer and transgender people of color battling gentrification and displacement, these films resonate across generations and lay the cornerstone for change.

// June 11-13, qwocmap.org

This article originally appeared on SF/Arts Monthly.

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