Gateshead Pride confirms 90s icons as headliners for first ever festival

The first ever Gateshead Pride is taking place this summer a the identity of its headliners have now been revealed as two names from pop past who music fans are sure to be aware of - Sonia and Alex Party, as well as dance icon Soraya Vivian.

This month is officially Pride month all over the world but the festivities are yet to come in Gateshead, as the borough gears up for its first ever Pride celebration. Out North East has put together a programme which is designed to educate, celebrate and entertain both local people and visits throughout the month.

It kicks off with a takeover of the Metrocentre on August 3 with a full day of activities and will culminate in the Pride on Tyne Concert at Baltic Square on Sunday, August 25. And its that concert that will be headlined by Sonia, who hit number 1 in the late 80s with debut smash You'll Never Stop Me From Loving You, before seeing her success continue into the 90s, going onto represent the UK at Eurovision in 1993 and finishing second.

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It was two years after that Alex Party, also known for tracks like Read My Lips and Wrap Me Up, had their one and only UK number 1, when Don't Give Me Your Life became one of the biggest hits of that summer. Like Alex Party, Soraya has performed the world over at major festivals like Gran Canaria Pride, making her the ideal performer to help celebrate in Gateshead.

Other highlights of the programme include film screenings at the Pride Media Centre at Pelaw and a Pride Lawn Green Bowling Tournament on August 18 at Pelaw, with all proceeds going to both Pelaw Community Bowling Club and Out North East.

The first 5k Pride Colour Fun Run – in partnership with Forestry England – will take place on August 21 where as well as the run through Chopwell Woods, less athletic visitors can also enjoy a range of food and drink stalls, activities for children and even axe throwing and archery.

This is just a flavour of the many activities which will take place across the month and David Alexander, Principal and Chief Executive of Gateshead College, said the college was proud to be supporting the event.

Peter Darrant, Chair of Out North East, said Pride In Gateshead has “received fantastic support," adding: "For the very first Pride in Gateshead we really wanted to pull together an ambitious and eclectic programme which would have something for people of all ages,” he said.

"And we couldn’t have done that without the backing of organisations like Gateshead College and Gateshead Council. Their support has enabled us to make sure that Pride in Gateshead is going to be a month to remember for the LGBTQ+ community and their allies.”