Croydon PrideFest Returns
MOBO award-winning rapper Lady Leshurr, Soju from reality TV show RuPaul’s Drag Race, and Croydon’s very own singer and songwriter, David McAlmont, will top the bill at Croydon PrideFest 2019.
This hugely popular Pride celebration – the second largest in the capital – returns to Croydon’s Wandle Park on Saturday 13 July for the fourth year running, with organisers promising it will be bigger, better and more diverse than ever.
The festival starts at 12pm, with a parade from North End in Croydon town centre to Wandle Park, to live music from Rhythms of the City.
Performing on the main stage at Wandle Park are Son of a Tutu, Danny Beard, Asifa Lahore, The London Mozart Players with Silvastone, Kim Mazelle, and Bugeye.
Brand new for this year will be the cabaret tent hosted by Batty Mama, with other performers including Miss Prince, Bellavie Lady Bee, LMT, DJ Ritu and more. Batty Mama, among London’s most exciting performance and cabaret groups, are one of three new partners for Croydon Pride this year, alongside BlackoutUK and Urban World.
Croydon’s favourite spoken word group, Well Versed Ink, will be running spoken word workshops in the park during the afternoon.
In addition to fantastic live music and entertainment, dance, food and drink, Croydon PrideFest-goers have the opportunity to speak to businesses, community groups and charities who will be there to promote their work.
The festival will be followed by an after-party at Dice bar, Croydon, starting at 10pm.
The line-up was revealed at last week’s official Croydon PrideFest launch at The Front Room, 37-39 St George’s Walk, Croydon with performances from three Batty Mama artists, including Lasana and Sherika Sherard.
And PrideFest fans don’t have to wait until next month to start the celebrations – last week’s launch signalled the start of a series of warm-up events ahead of the big day.
The David Lean Cinema in Katharine Street, Croydon will host a mini film festival, with Rafiki screened on Tuesday 25 June and Tucked shown on Tuesday 9 July. Local spoken word group, Well Versed Ink, will perform a commissioned poem performed live before each film. On Friday 12 July, there will be a pre-Pride Batty Mama event at The Front Room, Croydon.
Croydon PrideFest has this year won £8,750 funding from Arts Council England for an ‘exceptional’ bid for its partnership with Batty Mama, in addition to support from Croydon Council. Other sponsors include Fat Beehive, Liverpool Victoria, Wilmott Dixon, Regent Land and Chequers Contract Services.
Paula Goodwin, Chair of Croydon PrideFest, said: “Croydon PrideFest is truly inclusive, and that doesn’t mean just inclusive of people like me, but everyone – we aim to reflect the fullness of the LGBT+ community. Croydon is the most culturally diverse borough in London and the people who run, and the people who attend Croydon PrideFest reflect that. As a transgender woman it is great that Croydon is embracing and celebrating all of the rainbow people who make up the LGBT+ community.”
“I’m absolutely delighted that we are supporting Croydon PrideFest again this year, and to see such a diverse and impressive list of acts performing. Through their creativity, talent and hard work, our community has ensured that this festival has gone from strength to strength, becoming a highlight of our cultural calendar and attracting visitors from across London and the south-east. It’s an event we can all be proud of and I hope everyone will come and enjoy.”
Councillor Oliver Lewis, cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport
More information can be found on the Croydon Pride Facebook page and Instagram page @croydonpride and www.croydonpride.org.uk