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Celebrating Pride Month With Music and Style

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 1582119
Dance at Gay Activist Alliance Firehouse, 1971. Image ID: 1582119

The New York Public Library is kicking off Gay Pride month with fun, inspiring and FIERCE events.

The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture will highlight its In the Life Archive collection which celebrates the contributions of LGBTQ people in the black community at its second annual First Fridays: Black LGBTQ Pride Edition on Friday, June 3 from 6-10 p.m. The collection features photographs, flyers, film, video, artwork, clothing and files that chronicle queer black identity from the mid through late 20th century.

Enjoy signature cocktails and dance to the sounds of DJ Missy B and Craig Nic in the Langston Hughes Lobby and DJ Frankie Paradise in the American Negro Theater. Host Dhalimu from Dhali’s closet and Lee Soulja from the House of Soulja will present drag performer, Harmonica Sunbeam, who will entertain with her incomparable blend of song and comedy.

“I'm honored to perform at this event for the second year in a row,” quipped Sunbeam. “It means I either did a damn good job last year or no one else was available. I hope this event achieves a sense of love, fellowship and pride amongst our community,” she added. “I will impact this event by bringing the gift of laughter and a taste of the rainbow to the masses.”

There will also be a sponsored fair along with free health screening outside the Schomburg Center provided by Housing Works and Boom Health.

The suggested dress code is FABULOUS!

Yiddish meets queer at The NYPL Pride Trivia Concert featuring Isle of Klezbos, the acclaimed all women’s klezmer sextet The interactive and off-beat event features questions about gay activists, artists and pioneers culled from NYPL’s vast archive of LGBT history.

Isle of Klezbos was formed in 1998 by drummer and leader Eve Sicular. Their repertoire encompasses Yiddish melodies and folk ballads and blends in swing, tango and genre defying originals. The band has performed in Sicular’s musical documentary theater piece, J. Edgar Klezmer: Songs from My Grandmother’s FBI Files, as well as venues throughout the United States and internationally. Their concert footage has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning, CNN World Beat, PBS’ In the Life and The L Word.

The event will be held at Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street. Tickets are $20.00.

More NYPL Pride events listed here.

Library Resources

Electronic resources on LGBTQ history and culture

Gay Power! The Stonewall Riots And The Gay Rights Movement, 1969 / Betsy Kuhn.
Explores the decades of discrimination and abuse that gay people endured in earlier eras. Also learn how gay people continue to fight for equal rights and recognition.

Queer History of Fashion

A Queer History Of Fashion: From The Closet To The Catwalk edited by Valerie Steele.
From Christian Dior to Yves Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen, many of the greatest fashion designers of the past century have been gay. Fashion and style have played an important role within the LGBTQ community, as well, even as early as the 18th century. This provocative book looks at the history of fashion through a queer lens, examining high fashion as a site of gay cultural production and exploring the aesthetic sensibilities and unconventional dress of LGBTQ people, especially since the 1950s, to demonstrate the centrality of gay culture to the creation of modern fashion.

Storycorps Black LGBTQ Archive, 2004-2013. Available at Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives (Sc MG 15-7)
The StoryCorps Black LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) Archive is a collection of interviews compiled by StoryCorps between 2004 and 2013, reflecting a multitude of experiences of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and Transgender people throughout the African Diaspora. Conversations between partners, siblings, colleagues, friends, and parents and children range over topics such as love, relationships, activism, identity, coming out, achieving self-acceptance, race, politics, family, culture, immigration, and communities of faith.

LGBT, Encyclopedia Of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, And Transgender History In America / Marc Stein, editor in chief.
Encyclopedia of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history in America.

Gay Revolution

The Gay Revolution: The Story of The Struggle / Lillian Faderman.
A chronicle of the modern struggle for gay, lesbian and transgender rights draws on interviews with politicians, military figures, legal activists and members of the LGBT community to document the cause's struggles since the 1950s.

Proud Heritage: People, Issues, And Documents Of The LGBT Experience / Chuck Stewart, editor.
Highlights the social, cultural, and political developments of LGBT issues through biographies of key people, entries, legislation, and primary documents.

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