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Fierté Montréal / Montréal Pride
Photograph: Charles Lynn

Montreal's annual Pride Festival goes online in August with a full week-long program

Since festivals continue to be cancelled in the city at least until August, the Montréal Pride Festival is adapting by going online.

By JP Karwacki
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Since Montreal declared a state of emergency back in March, festivals—a major contributor to the city's lifeblood every summer—have been dropping out for the year and cancelling altogether. There are, however, a few organizations that have opted to go online like the Montréal Pride Festival.

Going by the name of the 360 Edition, the LGBTQ+ organizing body for the city's annual parade and accompanying festivities since 2007 announced its alternative programming on July 17: A week's worth of digital content that will lean heavily on daily instructional programming and learning experiences, followed by musical performances.

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Dévoilement de la programmation complète de l’Édition 360 du festival Fierté Montréal présenté par @td_canada La diversité chez soi, avec Backxwash, Melissa Etheridge, Dominique Jackson, Adam Lambert, Ngabo et plusieurs autres! ❤️ Visitez www.fiertemtl.com pour plus d'info ⭐ Montréal Pride Festival’s 360 Edition presented by @td_canada complete programming unveiling diversity at home, with Backxwash, Melissa Etheridge, Dominique Jackson, Adam Lambert, Ngabo and many others! ❤️ Visit www.fiertemtl.com for more info⭐ #FierteMTL #PrideMTL #Fierte360 #Pride360 #Montreal #mtlmoments #instagram #Fier @td_canada @casinomontreal @fidomobile @trojancanada @lasaq @bellmediapr @gouvernementquebec @montreal @centrevillemontreal @o_canadiana

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As the release states, each day will run from 9am until musical performances beginning at 6pm end. The unveiled daily programming features—following different themes of sexual and gender diversity—speakers and curators focusing on a variety of mental health for people of sexual and gender diversity, hours of presentations on the contributions of Black transgender individuals in solidarity with the Black Trans Lives Matter movement, interviews and discussions, and DJ performances to end a day's celebrations and discussions.

While Montrealers and people from around the world are encouraged to check out every single event and program, particular highlights include

Monday, August 10th: The Canadian Opera Company will be putting on a show of Hadrian with a one-night-only presentation, followed by a live Q&A session with Rufus Wainwright and Daniel MacIvor, the first opportunity to check out the show since it was first unveiled in Toronto in 2018.

Tuesday, August 11th: The Sister’s Circle—an organization based on the empowerment of at-risk girls—will hold an exclusive event for people from diverse backgrounds, facilitated by Emily Minier. Highlighting women's diversity, the talk will end with a DJ set hosted by Misstress Barbara and starring Melissa Etheridge.

Wednesday, August 12th: Learn about fetish practices and its philosophy—and deconstruct the prejudices still associated with them—with sexologist Gabriel-le Beauregard's interviews with five members of the bear, leather and fetish communities. This is what you want to watch, especially if you want to learn about sex toys, sexual consumption, consent in fetish practices and HIV/STI prevention.

Thursday, August 13th: It's a day of literary provocations, as a series of short readings from LGBTQ+ writers in French and English will be given by Nicholas Dawson, Peter Dubé, April Ford, Kama La Mackerel and Rachel Matlow, all hosted by Christopher DiRaddo. That will be followed by a show hosted by Elle Barbara and will feature performances by Apollin, Backxwash, Enshantay, Masala Massi x Vells of Bollywood, Miami Minx, Sarahmée, Ngabo, Nick Saanto, plus Dominique Jackson from the series Pose.

Friday, August 14th: It's a drag cabaret at home! Starting at 8pm, the Illusion show is what you want to watch to celebrate (or get acquainted with) Québec drag artists. Hosted by Michel Dorion, the show will feature over 20 artists like Aizysse Baga, Amy Haze, Big Sissy, Bijuriya, Emma Déjavu, Gisèle Lullaby, Heaven Genderfuck, Kiara, LaDrag On-Fly, Luss Martin, Marla Deer, Matante Alex, Océane, Peach, Prudence, R.V Métal, Rock Bière, Sasha Baga, Suki Doll, Tracy Trash, Uma Gahd, Velma Jones and Zenith.

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Also on Friday at 10pm, Drag Superstars – Canada’s Drag Race Edition will have a 60-minute special featuring 12 drag artists, hosted by “Queen in the North” Brooke Lynn Hytes. Watch all of this season's favourites, like Anastarzia Anaquway, Boa, Ilona Verley, Jimbo, Juice Boxx, Kiara, Kyne, Lemon, Priyanka, Rita Baga, Scarlett Bobo, and Tynomi Banks.

Saturday, August 15th: Learn about the realities of LatinX communities from the only LatinX troupe in North America, featuring names like Anaconda La Sabrosa, Black Mamba, Castro, Cherry Top, El Toro, Lolita Blanca, Miami Minx and Salty Margarita. Afterwards, emerging stars of the LGBTQ+ scene (Antony Carle, Bo Johnson, Erika Daniels, Félicia, Floraa, G-Dazzle, Hugo Lacchia, Kama La Mackerel, Mathieu Samson, Scary and Tranna Wintour) will be putting on a performance of their own.

Sunday, August 16th: From 2 pm to 5 pm, a DJ Set by A$h Banks will take place on Twitch, followed by a surprise event from 8pm to 9:30pm.

Those looking to tune in for music, "from Monday to Saturday, (Montréal Pride) will have DJ Giant (August 10), Misstress Barbara (August 11), Jack Chang (August 12), DJ Nalee (August 13), Sissy Superstar (August 14) and Odile Myrtil (August 15)."

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