Happy Pride Month! Our Pride Month Series is BACK for another year! It’s time to celebrate the fabulous people who make up our glorious LGBTQ+ community!
During Pride Month we will be highlighting those people. Today, we ask Clayton Wright, the man behind some of our FAVE LGBTQ+ events from Litte Gay Brother, Sugar Daddy, the iconic Bodymovements Festival and the BRAND NEW Pride Party Studland Soho, what Pride means to them!
What does Pride mean to you?
Pride is still a protest. Pride is still political. Pride is a time to rejoice. Pride is not about pinkwashing. Pride is ours to shape, and we can carry it with us every day.
Recently, the Little Gay Brother dance team experienced some violent homophobia and transphobia at a major UK festival, which has resulted in us pulling all of our gigs from the UK festival scene. We have also pledged to change our name, in the hopes we can signal to the community that we are fully trans-inclusive and transphobia has no place within our organization, at festivals, or on the dancefloor.
My point is, homophobia and transphobia is actually on the rise, and Pride is our opportunity to step up and take action for positive change. This month, Pride month, we all, step into our power as queer people. Pride is a time to reflect on the past, honor those who came before us, and march toward a better future – fighting for the injustices we still face including asking for equality for the trans community.
Tell us about your first Pride experience, what & where was it?
My first pride experience was actually quite grim. I was in Soho Square, people were dancing and going under on G all around me. I remember some older mid-60s muscle guy screaming “Is this what I fought for?”, then his friends took him away. He was really upset at the sights around him.
At the time, I had no idea what he meant. I thought the whole thing was a bit dramatic and I kept partying with my mates, but now, I get it. I didn’t understand what pride meant because I didn’t have much myself. I didn’t understand how much our community sacrificed, even though, I personally had struggled with bullying and homophobia growing up. I was still full of my own internal homophobia. I wasn’t yet educated enough, or powerful enough to step up for myself or others.
Years later, I became part of the London pride parade, I was on top of a float where I was given a mic. It was amazing. I felt that revolutionary spirit, marching alongside your people demanding ‘social change’. I still believe that pride is one of the most essential and powerful celebrations we have.
What is your favorite part of Pride?
I love the sense of freedom and self-expression during Pride. But, not everyone experiences it this way, for example, the trans community in this country is under constant attack, and in many countries around the world – gay and trans people are killed for existing. The community genuinely comes together for pride, they step up, they listen, they fight. It really gives me hope for a better future.
Do you have a favorite Pride memory?
My first big pride party with Little Gay Brother was incredible. We had Ms Kitten at playing at Flat Iron Square (an open-air venue, where I do Feel It now), and it started raining. But it was hot, sticky rain, and if anything, it made us dance harder and Kitten play faster. The crowd just seemed to erupt and get naked. It was wild. Like the last days of Rome. Queer heaven and celebration at its best.
Why do you think Pride is still important?
For all the reasons I have said and more. Pride is when the whole community can come together and stand side by side for a better tomorrow for the whole lGBTQI+ community, because if we’re not all free, then none of us are free.
Studland Soho will be one of London’s Prides Biggest Events.