Next Saturday night the team from Winter Pride are taking over the amazing Scala in King’s Cross for an extra special Magical Circus party, and it promises to be something astounding. Dave Cross caught up with founder of Winter Pride and creator of Pink Oktoberfest, Rebecca Paisis, and creative genius, Winter Pride host and drag artist, John Sizzle, to find out all the news.
Hi Rebecca and John, we are very excited about Winter Pride 2019. This event feels a bit different from other years… how would you sum up what it is?
Rebecca: Winter Pride is a colourful display of diversity and unity in what for many can be the long, dark month of January. This year we’re going all out with a Magical Circus theme.
Why did you choose The Scala this year?
Rebecca: The Scala is an iconic venue right near King’s Cross. It has the size, scale and layout for us to theme up. The Scala team are committed to putting on safe and enjoyable events for the LGBT community and their staff have received diversity training to cater for our community’s needs.
And the Magical Circus theme?
Sizzle: This is so exciting. We’ve got a fabulous opening number fronted by our dazzling diva, Mzz Kimberley, and our merry band of circus freaks that should not be missed! Add contortionists and mix in a fabulous crowd all dressed up, and with body art on offer, special effects and a carnival atmosphere… I can’t wait to see it!
Can you talk us through each of the four rooms? Performers, music etc?
Sizzle: We’ve got four awe-inspiring rooms to choose from.
The Big Top room promises show-stopping performances from scene greats Mzz Kimberley and Margo Marshall. Expect tumblers and contortionists with dancing all night to queer anthems from DJs Mike Kelly (Retro Bar/Douchebag) and Jacob Aria (The Glory) plus many more.
The Freak Show room is all about “getting your freak on”. Leave your binary at the door and join this writhing festival of freaks with pop-up shows from a host of London’s campy clowns including Baby Lame and Crystal Beth (Mariah & Friends). Chuck in a king or two, like Oedipussy Rex, add some pole dancing from Bimini, stir in pop and disco classics and you’ve got some devilishly cheeky party soup happening.
The Girls’ Arena room hosted by Mint is a place for the ladies to mooch and smooch, pout and mingle. You can dance to the fiercest tunes of the moment and get your groove on to the sounds of DJ Lady Lola, DJ Misty B and El Conchitas.
The Urban Circus room will bring you the sound of the underground. Bump and grind to the R&B sounds of Neil Prince (R & She/Heaven), scene master Jeffrey Hinton and more. Nicki, Bey, Yessy and Drake, we got it covered baby, just wind up your waist.
Why do you think it’s important to have Pride themed events in 2019?
Rebecca: Pride gives us the chance to come together as one. Often LGBT events are for particular groups, but what’s so great about Pride, and why I created Winter Pride, is that all the community comes together. It’s a joy to see such diversity and bring light and colour to a dreary January.
Sizzle: Because it’s our time to shine and show who we really are.
Finally can you tell us about the monies you raise for LGBT+ charities?
Rebecca: As well as showcasing LGBT culture and hiring local LGBT talent, we’re partnering this year with the UK Pride Organiser’s Network (UKPON) to raise much needed funds on the night for smaller UK Prides that so often struggle to put their events on. So please give generously with any spare change. As we party, we can be helping others to get to a place where they can too.