Pride at MOA: From a Riot to a Revolution

Pride at MOA: From a Riot to a Revolution

Saturday, August 3, 2019 at 1:30 PM – 7 PM

Museum of Anthropology

Free with museum admission

Join MOA to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall—the New York City riots that sparked the modern fight for LGBTQ+ rights and blossomed into an international rainbow celebration of diversity, inclusion and human rights, now known worldwide as Pride.

The celebrations at MOA include three documentary screenings, a participatory discussion about queer issues with Love Intersections (Jen Sungshine and Kimberley Wong), a voguing workshop with Ralph Escamillan (founder of Van Vogue Jam), and an outrageous and raucous vogue ball produced by Nick Benz.

Engage with contemporary queer issues and explore the long history of Pride and LGBTQ+ liberation with local queer and trans artist and activists. Learn more about once-marginalized traditions, like voguing, that were born in the shadows of prejudice and discrimination and grew into joyous expressions of culture.

Film screenings | Haida House

Watch three documentaries that capture different queer experiences and expressions of the past 50 years.

1:30 – 2:50 pm | Paris Is Burning (director: Jennie Livingston, 1990), filmed in the mid-to-late 1980s, is the ever-popular documentary that chronicles the drag ball culture of New York City and the African-American, Latino, gay and transgender communities involved in it.

4 – 4:20 pm | Stonewall Forever (director: Ro Haber, 2019) is a short film that brings together queer activists to look at the movement for LGBTQ+ equality, highlighting trans people, people of colour and homeless people who were at the forefront of the movement.

4:30 – 4:50 pm | Yellow Peril: Queer Destiny is an experimental short documentary (director: Jen Sungshine, 2019) that follows drag artist Maiden China as she explores nuances of queer Chinese Canadian identity and where geo-political, historical, sexual and cultural contexts intersect.

Discussion | Haida House

4:50 – 5:45 pm | Listen, participate and learn, in this participatory “fishbowl” discussion—led by Love Intersections (Jen Sungshine and Kimberley Wong), a media arts collective of queer artists of colour. Members of the LGBTQ+ and QTBIPoC communities—and everyone who is interested—are invited to engage in a lively, collective conversation to deepen their understanding of queer issues.

Voguing | Great Hall

Strike a pose, it’s time to get your vogue on at MOA! Voguing is a highly stylized dance that evolved out of the Harlem ballroom scene of the 1960s. Ball culture and drag ball culture are terms that describe the LGBTQ+ subculture that served as havens of safety for marginalized youth, most often black and latino.

3 – 4 pm | Voguing + ballroom workshop with Ralph Escamillan, one of Vancouver’s leading queer dance artists, yas! This is your chance to learn the fundamentals of this fabulous dance form that will make your jaw and maybe your body hit the floor. No dance experience necessary, everyone is welcome.

6 – 6:40 pm | Voguing Ball with the Vogue Van Jam performers are going to awe you with their astounding moves in this showcase performance. Some of Vancouver’s most outstanding and outrageous vogue talents—including the 12-year-old drag phenom Bracken—come together for a one-of-a-kind Pride show at MOA. If the moves don’t literally knock you over, the costumes, music and jaw-dropping attitude just might.

Vogue Van Jam Performers: Nick Benz, Mattheu Chiu, Ralph Escamillan, Alicia Graham (aka Alicia Gvasalia), Juan Imperial (aka Baby Gvasalia), Mhico Rico (aka Miu Miu Gvasalia), Bracken Hanke (aka Bracken Gvasalia), Ross Wirtanen


Love Intersections is a Vancouver-based media arts collective of queer artists of colour who use artistic practice to share stories of queer, trans and intersex people, living, dancing, and breathing in the margins. The collective was co-founded by Jen Sungshine, a queer Taiwanese interdisciplinary artist, activist, facilitator and community mentor, and Kimberley Wong 黄壯慈, a queer intersectional feminist Chinese activist whose research with UBC focuses on telling underrepresented stories from Vancouver’s Chinatown.

Ralph Escamillan is a Vancouver-based queer, Canadian-Filipinx performance artist, choreographer, teacher, and community leader. He is the founder of Van Vogue Jam, a weekly series of by-donation vogue classes and balls.

Nick Benz is a dancer, actor, director and producer with Mi’kmaq and settler Croatian and French ancestry. Nick started his career in New York City studying traditional African, vogue and street style dance. Now based in Vancouver, Nick is currently working on God’s Lake, a play about the resilience of an isolated reservation in northern Manitoba.

More information here.