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Kuhoo Verma, Azure D. Osborne-Lee and More to Take Part in PROUD VOICES: AN AUDIO FESTIVAL
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Kuhoo Verma, Azure D. Osborne-Lee and More to Take Part in PROUD VOICES: AN AUDIO FESTIVAL

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Kuhoo Verma, Azure D. Osborne-Lee and More to Take Part in PROUD VOICES: AN AUDIO FESTIVAL

As NYC begins to enter its next phase, PROUD VOICES: an audio festival is a socially conscious way of experiencing the work of queer artists of color and supporting small businesses, while remaining socially distant. To celebrate Pride and the importance of these LGBTQIA+ artists of color, PROUD VOICES will open on June 28th, 2020, the anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall Riots and the 50th Anniversary of NYC's first Pride and run through July 12, 2020 (with a planned 2 week extension to July 26th). To learn more visit Butch Mermaid Productions.

To experience this auditory adventure, audience members register for a map via Eventbrite and choose to donate if they can, to For The Gworls, House Lives Matter and The Audre Lorde Project. These organizations are led by and benefit the Black and POC LGBTQ+ community. Audience members will then use the map to walk around the West Village, stopping at each PROUD VOICES location to scan a QR code in the window of the featured business, learn more about each artist and listen to their audio track. (A helpful Instagram video will also be available at @proudvoicesnyc). Audience members are encouraged to wear a mask as they make their way around the festival at their own pace, safely and in control of their experience.

PROUD VOICES is a unique event this Pride season that celebrates LGBTQIA+ artists of color. Participants include Afro-Latina recording artist, poet, and influencer Nitty Scott, Azure D. Osborne-Lee (Trans Lab at The Public and WP), Kuhoo Verma (Off-B'way: Octet), Mashuq Mushtaq Deen (Off-Off-B'way: Draw The Circle), Kit Yan and Melissa Li (Lincoln Center Writers-in-Residence, 2019-2020 Musical Theater Factory MAKERS), Renee Goust (New York Foundation for the Arts' Women's Fund grant 2020), Cheeyang Ng (2020 Eric H Weinberger Librettist Award), and Xandra Nur Clark (Dixon Place, The Flea).

"PROUD VOICES was important before COVID-19, but today, as New York enters its next phase it's more important than ever. It's especially important at this time to bring underrepresented voices to iconic queer businesses like The Stonewall Inn. We were very conscious that we needed to create a festival that highlights the history of our local community, the LGBTQIA+ artistic community and the public health of that community. By raising money for these three social justice organizations, we hope to emphasize the importance of helping our community grow, " adds Ania Upstill, Artistic Director of Butch Mermaid Productions.


PROUD VOICES: an audio festival, invites New Yorkers to wander through the iconically queer West Village, experiencing audio work by LGBTQIA+ artists of color. Available June 28th - July 12th, 2020 (possible extension to July 26th, 2020). Explore the offerings of the West Village's unique small businesses and engage with some of NYC's brilliant queer artists safely (masked up and socially distanced)! As you visit bars, stores, coffee shops, and restaurants, you can access a song, poem, or other auditory experience from the exclusive QR code posted at each participating location marked on our digital map.

Inspired by Pride's inception at the 1969 Stonewall Riots, our inaugural PROUD VOICES will honor the legacy of the Black queer folks that led the way. The experience is free, but we invite audience members to donate what they can. All funds will go towards three organizations that focus on social justice for the Black LGBTQIA+ community: For The Gworls, House Lives Matter, and The Audre Lorde Project.

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