By Valerie Milano
New York City, New York (The Hollywood Times) 6/30/19 – World Pride hit New York this week. Among the 3 million plus attendees were Whoopie Goldberg, Alicia Keys, Chaka Khan, Laverne Cox, and The Hollywood Times traveling with Women on A Roll. The event marked the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and a glorious half-century of LGBTQ+ liberation.
The weekend’s events wrap up an entire month of NYC Pride celebrations. The world famous NYC Pride March took place Sunday, the crowning event.
Hosted by Whoopi Goldberg, the Opening Ceremony on Wednesday featured performances by Cyndi Lauper, Billy Porter, Chaka Khan, Ciara, Days, Todrick Hill, Alyssa Edwards, Alaska Thunderfuck, Shangela, Yvie Oddly, and Bob the Drag Queen. The performances were spectacular, and benefited the Ali Forney Center, Immigration Equality, and SAGE. It was a bombastic and appropriate opening to the following days.
Friday, exactly 50 years to the date of the 1969 Stonewall Uprising, fashion and pop icon Lady Gaga made a surprise appearance and took the stage at the Stonewall Day Concert. “This is a historic day,” she told the crowd. “You should be so, so proud of yourself.” Naturally, the crowd went wild. “I would take a bullet for you,” she added.
The concert was produced by iHeartMedia. Alicia Keys also performed, and notable attendees included Chelsea Clinton and Valerie Jarrett, among others. By the end of the day, the raucous concert had already been coined the “Gay Woodstock.”
Saturday, the less organized but full-of-heart Dyke March took to the streets. The demonstration is known for being a wildly popular, grass-roots statement–as opposed to a corporate parade.
Sunday evening, music legend Melissa Etheridge & Madonna is set to preside over the closing ceremony.
For a month filled with arts and culture (Pride Island, Outcinema, and Pridefest); parties, barrier breaking history, and family gatherings, the three major events were the crowning achievement. It was truly worthy of a worldwide celebration of a movement, of a people, of a social revolution. The attendees left feeling both energized and empowered to continue fighting for human rights on all fronts.
World Pride has previously been held in Rome, Jerusalem, London, Toronto, and Madrid. After NYC, Copenhagen will host the next World Pride celebration, in 2021.
The tradition endures, grows, and expands. We couldn’t have been happier to experience it.