I loved your article in this week’s paper about the lack of gay performers at your local pride fest [“Fighting Homolessness,” June 25]. I understand that the pride committee needs to have a big audience to bring in the dough, but certainly they could afford a higher mix of gay performers? How weird would it be to have a klezmer festival with non-Jews or a Juneteenth celebration with white folks–but it’s OK to have several straight performers at a gay event? It makes little sense to me.
As a gay performer, this issue strikes home. While I’ve played many pride events in my 17 years of touring, there were many more I didn’t get because I’m not Jennifer Holliday. Sure, book her if you think it’ll bring in the gay boys (I’m not sure the girls are as interested–maybe I’m wrong), but squeeze enough out of your budget to book me too. And Scott Free or any of the great queer performers who live in your region. We need to stop letting Sony determine what our music and culture is and start supporting our own.
Durham, North Carolina