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Sunday 12 October 2008

Celebrating Proud '07 in Wellington

Posted in: Events
By UniQ Victoria - 29th July 2007

The Glamazons
Proud '07 is organised by UniQ Victoria and takes place between 4 and 11 August 2007, with a whole range of activities and events on the Kelburn campus of Victoria University and throughout the Wellington CBD.

Laressa Donaldson, president of UniQ Victoria says, "This year we're working with other community groups to make Proud ‘07 bigger and better. By combining our skills and resources it means we can put on better events and promote them better, and raise queer awareness."

Proud '07 events include a high school prom-themed ball to open the week at the James Cook Hotel. There are also workshops on at the Victoria University Kelburn campus, a short film festival at The Film Archive, quizzes, youth events, a wine and cheese evening for parents of queers and queers parents, and closing the week will be the high campness of The Glamazons' Pyjama Party.

Proud ‘07's principal sponsors are Victoria University of Wellington Students' Association, Massey University Wellington Students' Association, Imerst, Wellington City Council and Frozen Flame Media.

Proud receives top level support, with Wellington Mayor Kerry Prendergast saying “It is my pleasure, once again, to support Proud 2007—queer pride week in the Capital. Wellington is a great big melting pot of people from all walks of life and events like this help us celebrate and enhance our diversity.”

Prime Minister Helen Clark is also behind Proud '07: “Labour has a long and unparalleled record in supporting human rights, including those for New Zealand's Rainbow communities. Proud is a week-long, community-focused event and is a chance for Wellington's Rainbow community to celebrate. All the best for a rewarding and entertaining week.”


Proud ‘07 opens with one of the most glamorous events on Wellington's queer calendar—the High School Prom.

UniQ Victoria president Laressa Donaldson says this is the second ball UniQ has hosted. “We thought it would be a great idea as many queer youth don't attend their own balls or can't take a partner of the same sex as they may not be out or the schools may frown upon it, so we thought this could be a great way to ensure everyone gets to—a glamorous way to kick off a glamorous week.”

High School Prom is open to everyone, young and old. DJ Jesta – who was a big hit at last year's ball – will be back playing classic gay anthems and some slow jams for those wanting to get a bit romantic.

Laressa says the traditional Prom Queen will be awarded on the night too. “We weren't sure how to award that as we expect there to be boy and girl, boy and boy, girl and girl couples, so we decided that there'll be two prom queens and the gender of them can be fluid! Or we may just have Best Frock and Best Pants!”

Sponsorship has kept the cost of the ball to a low $25 for students and $30 for others—and that includes a delicious stand-up buffet. “We're especially grateful to the New Zealand AIDS Foundation,” says Laressa. “They've provided us with sponsorship money to help keep the cost of the Prom down and to promote their key messages to an impressionable audience.”

Tickets are available for $25 from Cosmic Corner, the VUWSA office and at UniQ meetings and a limited amount on the door at $30. Laressa adds, “Because tickets are limited we urge people to get in quick so they don't miss out!”

High School Prom
James Cook Hotel Grand Chancellor
The Terrace
8pm, Saturday 4th August 2007


Gay/lesbian music is often regarded as either divas like Kylie Minogue, Madonna, Cher and La Toya Jackson, or guitar rockers like Melissa Etheridge and kd lang. However, UniQ Victoria is hosting a ‘queer and alternative' dance party at Our Bar on Friday 7th August.

Victoria University's Queer Rights Officer Rachael Wright says, “The basic idea was for a dance party for those who like more ‘alternative' music. We're going to play stuff like Peaches, Sleater-Kinney, Patti Smith, Gravy Train, Blondie, and lots of new-wave 80s hits… you won't hear any Steps or Beyonce here!”

In keeping with the theme of the night, the dress code is also alternative.

“The queer community is so diverse,” says Rachael. “And we wanna see as many people there dressed however they feel comfortable—so pierced nipples are more than welcome!”

So for everyone who likes to have a good dance but is bored of house and electronic music, come along to Our Bar from 10 pm on Tuesday 7th August and boogie on down with other like-minded individuals.

Dance Syndrome
Our Bar, Cuba Street
10 pm, Tuesday 7th August 2007
$5 doorcharge.


Coming out is a stressful time for anyone, but it can also be just as stressful for parents.

UniQ Victoria and Rainbow Wellington have organised a wine and cheese evening to provide a fun and supportive atmosphere to discuss all the issues of being the parent of a queer –or being a queer parent.

There will be a complimentary drink on arrival and a stunning cheeseboard selection provided for by Fonterra's Kapiti Cheeses.

Also at the evening will be Rachael Le Mesurier, the head of the New Zealand AIDS Foundation (NZAF) an organisation who have been trying to break down the barriers of being queer for a number of years, alongside their health promotion work. The NZAF launched the Out There! programme which aims to make schools a safer place for queer students.

So anyone who is a queer parent, a parent of a queer, or just interested in coming along is welcome at Our Bar from 7:30pm on Tuesday 7th August.

BYO Parent
Our Bar, Cuba Street
7:30pm, Wednesday 8 August 2007


What year was homosexual law reform? Who introduced the Civil Union Bill? Which pop star recently said he wouldn't take an HIV test because he was scared of the outcome? Perhaps these are some of the questions that will be asked at the third annual Test the Queer Nation quiz night at Imerst bar.

UniQ Victoria president Laressa Donaldson says that Test the Queer Nation is one of the most popular events of pride week. “This year we've got a whole heap of great prizes including new-release CDs from SonyBMG, DVDs from Universal, bar tabs, Twinings tea packs and loads more.”

Test the Queer Nation is open to everyone and includes rounds on a variety of subjects – not just LGBT history.

“We also have a tasting round which is always a load of fun, but quizmistresses The Glamazons are keeping mum as to what the taste round will be. Last year's was beer and it was amazing how few people could differentiate the different beers,” adds Laressa.

Entry is free and open to teams of 2 to 4. The quiz kicks off at 7pm so punters are advised to be there a bit early to register and enjoy Imerst's unique atmosphere.

Test the Queer Nation
Imerst Bar
13 Dixon Street
7 pm, Wednesday 8 August 2007


UniQ Victoria has teamed up with The Film Archive to create an amazing new event for Proud '07, Short shorts—a collection of Kiwi queer short films.

Featuring a range of short queer and queer-interest classics from the Oscar-nominated Two Cars, One Night to the cinematic premiere of award-winning local film maker Andy Boreham's Lost & Found In Bangkok, the genres and styles are as diverse as the community it's showcasing. We even get to see Xena's Danielle Cormack coming out—the dream of many a queer girl no doubt!

Gayline Wellington is sponsoring the event and will be supplying nibbles from 6:30pm with the films kicking off from 7:00pm sharp. Entry is by koha and a cash bar will be operating.

Don't miss your chance to see some of New Zealand's finest queer short films.

‘Short Shorts—A collection of Kiwi Queer short films'
The Film Archive
Cnr Vivian and Taranaki Streets
6:30 pm, Thursday 9 August 2007
Koha entry


Wellington's campest karaoke competition returns!

One could think that Queer Idol is the stepping stone to major things with the previous winner, Rob Arnold, going on to score a #1 hit in October 2006 as Gay Boy in The Edge-created Boyband.

This year Rob's going to be back to hand over his crown as one of the judges at the prestigious event hosted by Lady Trenyce at Imerst on Thursday 9th August.

While we can't guarantee that you'll end up topping the charts or touring the world, we can guarantee that there are great prizes up for grabs as well as the title and the adoration of those there.

The competition starts at 10pm sharp with registrations from 9:30pm. Numbers are limited and the competition is always fierce so make sure you get there earlier rather than later!

Queer Idol ‘07
Imerst bar, 13 Dixon Street
9:30pm, Thursday 9 August 2007
Free entry


Being a teenager can be hard, and being a queer teenager can be even harder so for Proud 2007 we're trying something new and organising a youth event. And what could be gayer than a Pink Light Disco?

Playing on the old Blue Light Disco's organised by the Police, the Pink Light Disco was the brainchild of 16-year-old Tylar Calcinai, a student of Wellington High School and secretary of queer support group School's Out.

Tylar says, “Pink light disco is aimed at youth and is designed for them to have fun in a safe, alcohol and drug free environment with other queer and queer-friendly young people. It also gets them used to being in an adult social environment without the pressures of drugs and alcohol.”

This event, a Wellington first, will be held at SubNine, starting from 11pm going through till 3am. Tickets will be $10 at the door and profits will go to School's Out—Wellington's queer youth support group for teenagers.

Performing that night will be three of Wellington's youngest queens, Felicity Frockachino, Rubarb Rouge and Nalia Star.

Tylar adds, “As we are responsible hosts catering will be available on the night and non-alcoholic drinks at the bar. There'll be an awesome DJ hard at work and a diverse range of music will also be on the menu!”

Pink Light Disco
SubNine, Edward Street
11:00 pm, Friday 10 August 2007
$10 entry

Note: Because this event is aimed at teenagers/youth, in the interest of their safety and enjoyment those over 25 may not be admitted. Trained harassment officers will be present and bags will be checked for alcohol.


Proud ‘07 closes with what promises to be the gayest dance party of the year.

Headlining the Pyjama Party are Wellington divas Natasha Crowe, La Toya Jacksin, Ellie Kat and Victoria, who together form drag super-group The Glamazons. The girls are due on stage at 1 and 2am, with DJ Gus spinning the tunes through the night.

Natasha explains, “Everyone loves a good old sleepover and there's nothing more comfy than a good pair of snug PJ's so we thought a pyjama party could be a really fun idea.”

“We're hoping that everyone joins in the spirit of things and dresses up in whatever they wear to bed, whether that be pyjamas, a nightie, their knickers or nothing at all—although it's not compulsory!” Natasha says, “Plus the party is open to everyone's teddy bears who can come for free!”

La Toya adds, “I'm just looking forward to being able to being able to dance around in my dressing gown and tiger slippers with a towel on my head!”

The Glamazons' Pyjama Party
iMerst, 13 Dixon Street
10:00 pm, Saturday 11 August 2007
$10 door sales only

This was just a selection of highlights from Proud '07 – see the full list of events in's events guide, or Wellington Proud's official website at

UniQ Victoria - 29th July 2007