Photos in order (2, 5, 6) Courtesy of Montréal Pride, (3,4) courtesy Divers/Cité by Aydin Matlabi
Story by Joseph Alexiou
There's no denying it: we here at Out Traveler love Montréal. Quebec's premier gay destinations is holding two super LGBT events in the upcoming months: Diver/Cité in July 26 to August 1, and the main Pride, also known as Celebrations de la Fierté, from August 13 to 16. Originally one big Pride festival, the arts and music festival was so popular that it was split became its own unique event.
Divers/Cité, translatable French wordplay for "Diverse/City," bills itself as an modern, avant-garde arts festival. 55 hours of live shows, concerts and cinema screenings will run alongside photo exhibitions. Talented drag performers Joey Arias and Justin Bond (featuring Our Lady J) will perform in the Cabaret de Minuit's "New York Series." If that's not enough drag, Mascara, La Nuit des Drags features 80 performers, outdoors on the night of Saturday, August 1.
Spinning at various parties that night are world-class DJs David Morales (playing the Sunset Party and opening the D/C Party)and Peter Rauhofer, who will play the late night set at D/C from 4 to 10 a.m. For the ladies, Lesbomonde features all night partying, from the 7 p.m. Cocktail hour at Suco Lounge featuring DJ and vocalist Sandy Duperval, to the club night at Musée Juste pour rire. This features DJs Betti Forde, circuit fave Alyson Calagna, and JD Samson from Le Tigre (yet another New York visitor).
The numerous pride events begin officially on August 13, but the parties begin Friday with the loungy Bring Your Own Lesbian POP Fiesta. Saturday is all about the BBCM party in Altitude 737, a restaurant-club on top of Place Ville-Marie—these experts de la fête have brougth the kickoff to one of the city's biggest skyscrapers. Beginning at 1 p.m., the all-day event includes beautiful panoramic views and DJ Alain Jackinsky, Stéfane Lippé, and Patrick Guay. Those looking for free events can easily hit up Place Émilie-Gamelin, including the Café des Arts presentation of Per7eption and the work of Yvon Goulet and Kat Coric, who will perform live painting.
The parade itself begins on Sunday at 1 p.m., at Lorimier Avenue and René-Lévesque Boulevard East. The westward procession of leather and feathers will finish at Saint-Hubert Street, and celebrations continue at Parc Émilie-Gamelin (for a T-dance featuring, DJ Mark Anthony, Mexican sensation Oscar Belazquez and more Stéfane Lippé) and also Sainte-Catherine St. between Saint-Hubert and Papineau.
We could all use a few relaxing days in Montréal's very agréable summer climate and laid back culture—alors, allez-y directement, especially now that the U.S. dollar is worth $1.15 Canadian again—enfin! (finally!)