The LGBTQ+ artist cements Pride’s metamorphosis to music festival as rapper Eve pulls out
Whatever your views on it, Manchester Pride is now massive.
It has grown from protest to party to full-blown music festival. This year it’s bigger than ever with a whole programme of music being hosted a 20-minute walk from the Gay Village in at the area formerly known as Homeground at First Street.
YUNGBLUD won Attitude magazine’s Gamechanger Award and credits his queer fans with helping him to discover his own sexuality
If you were still not convinced that the music programme for Pride has blown up, the announcement of this year’s Saturday headline act might convince you.
Doncaster-born music phenomenon YUNGBLUD will join Sigala on the billing for Saturday night.
Who is YUNGBLUD?
The young British singer-songwriter whose real name is Dominic Richard Harrison went stratospheric at the end of the last decade with his blend of emo-meets-baggy styling and teen angst lyrics. Think: “I was born in a messed up century/ My favourite flavoured sweets are raspberry amphetamines” - or even “All I wanna do is kill somebody”. It's all blasted through a pure pop, hyper-produced filter and it's massively, massively popular.
Still only 24, his music is squarely aimed at his own demographic and makes a dramatic change from the traditional one-hit-wonder style 80s and 90s acts that have always been hosted (and largely adored) at the annual Canal Street party. Back in the day, Sidney Youngblood might have been a more likely headliner.
A bolder, queerer, more diverse Pride
YUNGBLUD won Attitude magazine’s Gamechanger Award and credits his queer fans with helping him to discover his own sexuality. He was hailed as “the future of rock” by Foo Fighters and Nirvana megastar Dave Grohl and the young star says culture and the coming together of his fans, or family as he calls them, is his reason for performing.
Manchester Pride said; “This is our boldest, queerest, most diverse and inclusive Manchester Pride Festival yet and YUNGBLUD is the final piece of the puzzle this year. He’s huge right now and we know that he will bring something very new, exciting and queer to our First Street stage this weekend.”
Also set to appear on Saturday are English DJ, record producer and remixer Sigala, Radio One’s Dance Party legend Annie Mac, singer-songwriter Katy B and musician, singer, songwriter, rapper and record producer Example. Saturday night’s performances will be hosted by La Discothèque and House of Ghetto.
Rapper Eve pulls out - House Gospel Choir steps in
Rapper Eve (of absolute banger Let Me Blow Your Mind fame) was also set to perform on Saturday but has sadly had to change her plans. She will be replaced on the billing by House Gospel Choir.
In a statement issued to the LGBTQ+ charity, Eve said; “Due to unforeseen circumstances I’m so sorry to say I won’t be able to play at Manchester Pride this year. I’m absolutely gutted I won’t get to play and share pride celebrations with you all, but I hope I can come back and play for you all in 2022. Happy Pride! Love Eve x”
What is the House Gospel Choir?
House Gospel Choir is by no means a booby prize though. You may have caught the incredible Gospel choir that performs House music hits previously at Manchester International Festival. If so, you will know what an absolute treat it is to behold. The choir plans to get the audience clapping, dancing and singing along and will really bring the party. Complete with a full live band, the choir has now grown to over 150 members of all religions and backgrounds.
On Sunday night headliner Zara Larsson will be joined on stage by singer, songwriters Ella Henderson, Gabrielle, Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Lucy Spraggan, Jason Andrew Gust and Shura. The stage will be hosted by Danny Beard, Cheddar Gorgeous, Anna Phylactic, The Manchester Queens and House of Blaque.
Rainbow Passes*, which allow access to MCR Pride Live Festival and four days at the Gay Village Party, start at £55 for a day or £84.50 for the weekend and Gay Village Party tickets are £17.50 for one day or £25.00 for all four days. Weekend Rainbow passes have sold out but a limited number of day passes are still available.
Manchester Pride 27-30 August 2021 - various venues
NOTE: All pictures of YUNGBLUD were taken by Stefan Brending
Read next: The best alternative Manchester Pride events
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