Pride Taranaki launched on Friday night, revealing an exciting four-day festival, a Pride Prom and a promise to increase the awareness, inclusion and acceptance of the rainbow community. Taranaki Community News caught up with co-chair of the pride team and festival director, Sunita Torrance.
Hey Sunita! Congratulations on the official launch of Pride Taranaki. So tell us, what are some of the fabulous events coming to town?
So, while a lot of it is entertainment based for the festival, it is about engagement of the community.
The festival itself is kind of the peak of the achievement. Leading up to it is about education and advocacy and getting the wider community being more aware of the needs of our LGBT+ community and embracing them.
During the festival there will be a youth Pride Prom, a comedy night, a gala ball and a big family fun day.
Some of our headliners include Art Simone and Philmah Bocks, both from Australia, and New Zealand’s Tom Sainsbury. We have more artists to announce as well.
And what about the dates for the first festival? When can we expect all of this glitter and glam to hit Taranaki?
April 2 – 5, 2020 is the festival! We are starting it relatively small, but we hope to build it up over the years.
If you could sum up this festival in one sentence, what would you say?
A celebration of our rainbow community in Taranaki to increase awareness, inclusion and acceptance.
What are you most looking forward to in the first Pride Taranaki Festival?
I’m actually super excited for the Pride Prom!
I have been talking to so many teens and I’ve attended so many meetings and workshops about how our youth are struggling so much with identity and I am excited for them to have the chance to be their unique self, whatever that may be and just have an awesome time amongst their peers.
We want them to feel the support and know it is out there!
It takes an awesome team to bring something like this together. Who’s involved in Pride Taranaki?
The Pride Taranaki Charitable Trust Board consists of co-chairs Daniel Lockett and Sunita Torrance, secretary Helen Lindley, treasurer Lance Morgan, and board members Anneka Carlson and Kuvarji.
As well as that, the Festival director is Sunita Torrance, while Sponsorship Engagement is led by Anneka Carlson.