San Diego Pride announced on Thursday (14 March) that Melissa Etheridge is going to be the headliner for their event this year.
Founded in 1974, San Diego Pride held their first event the following year. It was held in honor and celebration of Stonewall Riots of 1969.
Fittingly, this year’s theme is Stonewall 50: A Legacy of Liberation. They chose the theme because this year is the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. At San Diego Pride, they will ‘honor and reflect on the Stonewall generation, their activism and all that the LGBTQ community has gained through their efforts’.
Etheridge will be a part of that.
‘To my LGBTQ fans in San Diego and around the world, I have so much to thank you for,’ the rock singer said in a statement.
‘You are the proof that we can become the change we wish to see. This community makes me a better person every day and this year at San Diego Pride, we will raise our spirits to the heavens and rock ‘til we drop!’
Fernando Z. López, executive director of San Diego Pride, added he can ‘think of no one better to embody that spirit’ of celebrating the launch of the modern-day LGBTI civil rights movement than Etheridge.
‘Her decades of meaningful music and inspired advocacy continue to connect the LGBTQ community and carve a better path forward both here and around the world,’ he continued.
Who gets to perform at Pride?
Etheridge first came out publicly in 1993. Her announcement of performing at Pride, along with the likes of Kesha at LOVELOUD, comes amidst a discussion of the artists asked to perform at Pride events.
Recently, Ariana Grande responded to criticism that she’s headlining Manchester Pride this year. The criticism stemmed from both increased ticket prices as well as Grande not being an LGBTI artist.
Years & Years singer Olly Alexander, who is also performing at Manchester Pride, defended Grande.
‘In the case of Manchester Pride – Ariana has shown more than most that she cares about us and loves Manchester,’ he said.
‘Does that mean we shouldn’t try harder to celebrate all the amazing queer talent? No! But – can’t stress this enough – if more people listened to and supported LGBT+ artists – they’d get more slots.’
San Diego Pride takes place 13-14 July. Etheridge will close out the event on Sunday.
Author: Anya Crittenton
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