This year’s Prague Pride will feature more than 100 events across the city and hours of daily streaming for people across the globe, according to event organizers.
The jubilee event, now in its 10th year, will run from August 3 to 9. The peak of the festival will be the Rainbow Cruise on the Vltava on August 8; the cruise will feature picnics along the route and a live broadcast.
For the first time this year, in light of the coronavirus pandemic, the festival will bring together LGBT+ people and allies across the globe with an interactive livestream online.
The theme of this year’s festival is “Prague Pride Connects Us LIVE,” picked to emphasize that people can watch the festivities on the Prague Pride Facebook and YouTube pages daily from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Event organizers wanted to emphasize the interconnectivity of the festival.
“We have to get to know each other as LGBT+ people because, for example, the fact that I am a lesbian does not mean that I understand trans people. However, we don’t want to stick only with LGBT+ people, but also communicate with the people around us,” festival director Hana Kulhánková said. “The tenth Prague Pride simply has the aim of uniting the whole Czech Republic.”
The live streams will take place from two primary locations, the studio of the Charles University Faculty of Social Sciences and the U Valšů Theatre at the headquarters of the ŽIVOT90 organisation.
Each day, the live stream will be divided into several parts. The first part will be the Rainbow Fairy Tales children’s programme, featuring a number of lectures and discussions with Czech guests and international guests. In addition, there will be a feature called Queer Universe, where guests can watch a series of documentaries, reports and testimonials about LGBT+ people.
One part of the livestreams will feature a discussion with the organizers of Pride festivals from the Visegrad Four countries.
“For example, we will discuss what it is like to organise Pride when it involves fearing for one’s life, such as in Poland and Hungary. We would also like to focus on how to achieve mutual understanding with the opposition, which often does not have an understanding for LGBT+ people,” Hana Kulhánková said in a statement.
The live streams will be interactive as well, organizers said. Viewers can comment and ask questions to the panel during discussions.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Prague Pride organizers expect to see far fewer foreign guests. However, the festival intends to offer attendees a wide variety of local events to attend.
For example, the festival will address a number of important issues to the LGBT+ community, such as domestic violence within LGBT+ relationships.
Some of the other planned events include an edit-a-thon focused on building LGBT+ entries on Wikimedia, or a discussion about Czech LGBT+ literature. Instagram influencers “Two Dads” will read a book telling the story of their own lives, and the popular expat comedy show “The Gay Agenda” will perform.
This year, podcasts and talk shows will take a larger part in Prague Pride. The creators of the Brno queer podcast Kydy will release daily episodes during Prague Pride. In addition, the newly created YouTube show “V tranzu,” focused on transgender themes, will publish an extra episode during the festival.
The Polish gay and HIV activist Tom Siara will also attend the festival. He’s behind the “Non-Transmissible” educational campaign which tries to raise awareness of people living with HIV in Poland. Other foreign guests will participate in the festival virtually. Those guests include Andrey Jenkins, the first African-American trans woman elected to public office in the United States and German intersex artist Inns A. Kromming.
During the festival, buildings across Prague will be lit up in rainbow colors: The New Stage of the National Theatre in Prague, Vila Tugendhat and the Old Town Hall in Brno, the J.K. Tyl Theatre in Plzeň, the Green Gate in Pardubice and other buildings and structures throughout the Czech Republic.
Because of coronavirus, the festival is taking into account hygiene measures. The Pride Village on Střelecký Island will be an open-air venue. The Opening Ceremony will take place at the Pride Village starting at 6 p.m on August 3.
The Prague Pride festival took place in Prague for the first time in August 2011, when it was met with protests from various conservative groups in the Czech Republic and then president Vaclav Klaus called it an example of the ideology of “homosexualism.”
In the following years, the protests against Prague Pride gradually calmed down.
In 2018, the organisers reported the attendance of 92,000. In 2019, the number was 75,000, three-fifths of the participants being inhabitants of Prague, one-fourth arriving from other parts of the Czech Republic and the rest from abroad.