San Francisco’s 44th annual Pride celebration is this weekend, but the party doesn’t need to start (or stop) with Sunday’s parade. Check out the following arts and cultural events, and have yourself a Pride week worth remembering.
Monday: “Stories of the Spectrum” reception
Start your week with the reception for “Stories of the Spectrum,” a photo exhibition on view at the San Francisco LGBT Community Center until July 17. This group exhibition centers on depictions of queer and gender-nonconforming underrepresented minorities in the Bay Area and features portraits by the youth members of the Chinese Progressive Association, a multigenerational social justice organization that works to empower San Francisco’s low-income immigrant Chinese community.
Tuesday: “Pants, the Musical”
“Pants, the Musical” follows lesbian protagonist Ellie from ages 3 to 83 in this one-act musical theater production. Ellie is played by seven actors throughout the play, which is being performed at San Francisco’s African American Art & Culture Complex and will be followed by a performance of the Graceland Girls, a San Francisco 1950s-themed rock band.
Wednesday: “Sworn Virgin” at Rialto Cinemas Elmwood
If you’re looking to honor the spirit of Pride a little closer to home, check out “Sworn Virgin” at Rialto Cinemas in Berkeley’s Elmwood neighborhood. The film follows protagonist Mark as he travels to Italy from his village in Albania and negotiates his gender expression and identity. The film is an adaptation of Elvira Dones’ 2007 novel and is being presented as part of the 39th annual Frameline Film Festival, San Francisco’s international lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender film festival. Tickets are still available, so snag yours online here.
Thursday: “TransCuba” opening reception
Head over to San Francisco’s RayKo Photo Center on Thursday for the opening reception of “TransCuba,” the latest series by American photographer Mariette Pathy Allen. Allen, who has been photographing the transgender community for more than 30 years, brings Cuba’s transgender community to the forefront with this exhibit, which also features images by Anja Matthes that explore New York City’s underground kiki ballroom culture.
“Pansy,” a solo play by Evan Johnson in collaboration with Ben Randle, follows main character Michael as he explores similarities between himself and 1990s club kid Peter Pansy after discovering a time capsule in his basement. The play is being presented at SAFEhouse Arts as part of the Heart of Pride performance series. Tickets are available online here. Note that this event is for those ages 21 and older.
Saturday: “Macho Menos” art exhibit
“Macho Menos” is a group art exhibit that explores the intersection of queerness and machismo in Latino communities. The opening reception for the exhibit took place earlier this month, but the works are on view at the LGBT Community Center until July 17. Stop by Saturday between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. for a chance to view works by 11 artists that explore queerness, gender, culture and the interplay between identity and expectation.
Sunday: “The Gay Life” radio series
If Sunday’s Pride parade and public celebration aren’t quite your style, take some time to explore a slice of queer history with this online archive of “This Gay Life,” a radio series hosted by San Francisco journalist Randy Alfred. The series, which aired on KSAN-FM from 1979-84, explored queer life of decades past in all its glory. Segments include interviews with political figures and community leaders, as well as coverage of political developments and other news of interest to the queer community.
Sarah E. Adler is the arts & entertainment editor. Contact her at [email protected].