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By Rachel Stone
February 02, 2021
By Rachel Stone
February 02, 2021

A massive gay rainbow will once again shine over Tāmaki Makaurau this February as Auckland Pride Festival lands for 2021. The theme for this year's edition is 'Karanga Atu, Karanga Mai' which calls the community together for activism, celebration, inclusivity, representation and more.

The festival is loaded with over 200 events, showcasing music, theatre, visual arts, drag, comedy, literature, open days and parties. After premiering at NZIFF 2020, critically-acclaimed webseries Rūrangi will hit cinemas nationwide to kick off the festival in style. The Rainbow Carpet Tour of Aotearoa launches as part of Auckland Pride 2021, with a glittering gala evening at Rialto Newmarket on Wednesday, 3 February.

For the first time Auckland's vogue scene will battle it out across the festival, with the House of AITU hosting the return of the Thirst Trap Ball at the Big Gay Out on 14 February. Auckland Council's Proud Centres Programme is headlined by the Iman Ball the following weekend, and the House of Coven-Carangi's Supreme Ball will light up Auckland Art Gallery on Friday, 26 February.

Returning from the 2018 program is theatre comedy Gays In Space for a two-night season. Also on the stage, Let's Get Loco! promises to be a laugh-out-loud romp inspired by gay icons Ricky Martin and Kylie Minogue, while HEtheyShe is a solo performance art, activation dance experience that challenges the limitations of our tunnel visioned collective understanding of gender. Melody Rachel is also challenging the gender binary with the solo show I Wanna be Mark Wahlberg.

Also returning for Auckland Pride 2021 are Night of the Queer and Carnies and Queers, showcasing the more acrobatic side of queer performance. Then for one night only, Very Good At Falling present their queer take on circus at the Dust Palace, performed by established and emerging rainbow artists and musicians.

The Auckland Rainbow Parade will see over 10,000 spectators line Ponsonby Road on 20 February, while the Pride March will take over central Auckland from Albert Park to Aotea Square on 27 February to close the festival.

Image: Auckland Pride Festival.


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