Antwerp Pride 2022 theme, programme and schedule

It’s that time of the year again: Antwerp Pride and Antwerp Queer Arts Festival. Pride focuses on the second weekend of August: from Wednesday 10 to Sunday 14. AQAF runs from 5 to 28 August. In 2022, Antwerp Pride turns 15 and looks 15 years into the future under the banner of ‘Queertopia‘. AQAF hasn’t communicated a specific theme. 

New festival venues, a big opening night in the Openluchttheater Rivierenhof in Deurne and again a parade. Antwerp Pride, which will take place from Wednesday 10 to Sunday 14 August this year, will go all out again. 

This year’s theme is ‘Queertopia’, meaning that the organisation wonders what a future ideal LGBTQIA+ world would look like.

After two light editions, Antwerp Pride can put the city back in the rainbow colors with party, parade, debates, workshops and fascinating stories from the LGBTQIA+ community.

The fifteenth edition of Antwerp Pride starts this year on Wednesday 10 August in the OLT Rivierenhof with a spectacular opening night with performances by Liliane Saint-Pierre, Bryn, Miss Angel, Charles, Grigri el Macho Fantastico, Jaouad Alloul and Gustaph.

Recurring

The regular ingredients of Antwerp Pride are also back. For example, from 1 August you can once again discover fascinating stories from the LGBTQIA+ community during ‘Trail Of Stories‘. 

You can look for eleven portraits in the city. Each portrait is accompanied by a QR code behind which the story of the person portrayed is told. This year we asked eleven people what their Queertopia would look like. 

Photographer Noortje Palmers portrayed them and based on the stories; illustrator Mattias De Leeuw adapted the photos into artistic gems. 

This year you can discover the stories of spoken word performer Michiko, fashion researcher Nicola Brajato, Den Draak owners Hannes and Liesbeth, Mister Gay Belgium 2019 Matthias De Roover, icon Liliane Saint-Pierre, volunteers for years Anneke and Pascale, trans icon Marleen Hufkens, performer Gregory Frateur, founder of bookstore Kartonnen Dozen Johanna Pas, activist Sem Lenau and stand-up comedian Dena Dahvani.

Human Rights Friday

On Friday, August 12, during Human Rights Friday, Antwerp Pride will take a closer look at this year’s Queertopia theme. 

In the morning, at DPG Media and in collaboration with KLIQ and United Workers Club, we organize panel discussions for the business sector about how to make a workplace more inclusive. There will be an exchange of views with some large companies and practical tips will be given.

“In the afternoon we are guests in De Studio“, spokesperson Wilfried Eetezonne says. “There we will talk to young people about what their LGBTQIA+ world may look like in the future, and we will organize a second panel discussion on the trans issue with and for trans people, their allies and people who want to inform them- selves about the subject.”

Then Antwerp Pride shows the moving documentary ‘I am Samuel‘. About Samuel from Kenya who is torn between duty to his family and his love for Alex

The film is introduced by Samuel and by producer Annette Nyabundi.

“We organize Human Rights Friday together with Het Roze Huis Antwerpen and Wel Jong.”

Parade

On Saturday, August 13, at 2 PM, the Antwerp Pride Parade departs from the Paardenmarkt.

Beforehand, there will be a festive gathering on the Sint-Jansplein to go via the Hessenplein and the Oude Leeuwenrui and Brouwersvliet to the Scheldt Quays and from there to the festival site for the Love United Festival

Seventy organisations including forty trucks participate in the parade. Along the entire route there is plenty of space to watch the parade, so we also ask the public to spread out along the route.

Pax Media

One of the many striking participants in the parade will be the float on which all major media groups will come together in a kind of Pride Pax Media

VRT, SBS, DPG Media and Mediahuis, together with queer channel OUTtv, will join the parade for the first time.

CEOs Jeroen Bronselaer (SBS), Frederik Delaplace (VRT), Koen Verwee (Mediahuis), Kris Vervaet (DPG Media) and Marc Putman (OUTtv) are unanimous. “Although it should go without saying today that everyone is free to choose as When it comes to love, faith, identity and sexuality, we want to express our support for diversity, equality and inclusion. Together with the Antwerp Pride we embrace all people. We are already trying to reflect this warm, inclusive and positive society today: both in front of and behind the scenes. There is still work to be done, but it is our sincere ambition to always give a voice to all people, regardless of rank, position or belief and with respect for every talent. That doesn’t feel like an obligation, but it does feel like an incredibly beautiful privilege.”

Love United

The Love United Festival will take place this year on the newly constructed Scheldt Quays near the Ledeganckkaai and the Cockerillkaai and starts at 3 PM. 

On two stages there will be different DJs playing including Sharon of Love, Andrei Stan, Quivr, Justin Spears and Sahra. The party here lasts until midnight and admission is free.

The Rainbow Village in which numerous LGBTQIA+ organizations present themselves is also located on this festival site.

Drink tokens

“We also listened to our audience. To meet the long queues at the cash registers for drink tokens, everyone can buy drink tokens in advance as of this year”, Eetezonne says. 

You can buy them from Saturday 6 August in our Infoshop at the Stadsfeestzaal, in the Openluchttheater Rivierenhof, at the opening night (10 August), during the Midsummerparty at the Draakplaats (11 August), parade Sint-Jansplein starts (13 August) but also and especially online on www.antwerppride.com

This way you no longer have to queue after the parade and you can dive in immediately.

Pride in Town

New is Pride in Town. On the cosy Sint-Andriesplaats we set up a smaller festival far from the beats and the spots for everyone who needs a quieter Pride experience. Here you can go for a spoken word program, curated by Johanna Pas and Hind Eljadid

The starting DJs of the Queer DJ project provide a pleasant sound. The Pride Dates also take place here: just like last year, you can make new friends during the Pride Dates that you might not get to know in your regular social life. We organize Pride in Town together with the cultural meeting center coStA.

Closing Festival ft. Johnny Logan

On Sunday, the Closing Festival will take over the large festival site on the Scheldt Quays. 

From 2 PM to 9 PM you can sing and dance along with renowned artists and some guilty pleasures. 

Among the artists: Pommelien, Leopold, LaDiva Live, Grace, The Starlings and April Darby

Mister Eurovision himself Johnny Logan and Cookies And Cream close this edition of Antwerp Pride. Admission to the Closing Festival is also free.

Partner events

Of course, our partners organize a lot of official pride parties in between. 

On Thursday evening, August 11, there is the traditional Midsummer party at Café Den Draak. 

On Friday evening Twilight and Café Cock organize another Roof of Love on the Theaterplein. The main party on Saturday evening/night will be an extra spectacular edition of Woodpop at the Waagnatie, Cargo Club (Red and Blue) receives the ladies with Tompoes and there are the fetish parties at The Boots, there is an extra edition of Padam at the Museum Aan de Stroom (MAS) and there are many other parties at cafes DeLuxe, Barbette, Hessenhuis or Bonaparte that celebrates a whole week of festivities.

Antwerp Queer Arts Festival also has a rich program ready.

Queertopia

The theme of Antwerp Pride this year will be ‘Queertopia’, in which the organization asks itself and the community the question: what will society and our LGBTQIA+ community look like in fifteen years? And above all: what do we want our society to look like in 2037?

Asking that question immediately raises a series of other provocative questions.

Will another Antwerp Pride be needed in 2037? And if so, what should it look like? Will there still be letters in our LGBTQIA+ community or do we have a different name? Will our language be gender neutral by then? And the fashion? Do trans people have more autonomy over their transition by then? Will we have a queer Red Devil in 2037? Is there still discrimination in the labor market against queer people of color? Are we still looking for sex through apps? Will people of the same sex be allowed to have a religious marriage by then? Will we still have to come out of the closet? Who will win ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race‘ in 2037? Will there still be gay bars and parties or how will we go out? Do we take better care of each other?

In short, Antwerp Pride is looking for the ideal LGBTQIA+ society this year.

“We all make a society together” says chairperson Bart Abeel. “So, it’s good to think about a longer term than the issues of the day. We invite everyone to think along and dream about ‘Queertopia’. We raise the questions above and many others in our magazine, on our social me- dia, during debates, conversations and other activities during Antwerp Pride. But I’m sure more questions will arise in the coming weeks. Not that we will come to a final conclusion. ‘Queertopia’ is not so much the destination, but the journey to it”.

For all practical information and tickets: www.antwerppride.com

Or in our shop in the Stadsfeestzaal which will be there from Saturday 6 August 10 AM.

Overview

  • Trail of Stories 1 – 31 August – throughout the city – free.
  • Antwerp Queer Arts Festival 5 – 28 August – various locations – tickets at organisation.
  • Pride Week at Bonaparte 7 – 14 August – Bonaparte – free.
  • Pride Opening Night 10 August – OLT – admission 10 euro.
  • Midsummer Party 11 August – Den Draak – free.
  • Human Rights Friday 12 August – De Studio – free.
  • Padam 12 August – Cafe Storm – free.
  • Madame Abba Lutte 12 August – Wijn Barbette – free.
  • Roof of Love 12 August – Theaterplein – free.
  • Xtreme Fetish 12 August – The Boots – tickets at organisation.
  • Antwerp Pride Parade 13 August – start De Paardenmarkt – free.
  • Love United Festival 13 August – Cockerillkaai – free.
  • Antwerp Pride Village 13 August -Cockerillkaai – free.
  • Pride in Town 13 August – Sint-Andriesplaats – free.
  • Pride Saturday at Delux 13 August – DeLux – free.
  • Woodpop 13 August – Waagnatie – tickets at organisation.
  • A Hard Night 13 augustus – The Boots – tickets at organisation.
  • Closing Festival 14 August – Cockerillkaai – free.
  • Pink Sunday at Delux 14 August – Delux – free.
  • Hessenhuis Pride 14 August – Hessenhuis – free. 

Antwerp Pride 2022 & Antwerp Queer Arts Festival 2022

Queer Antwerp

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