Etheridge top draw at Pittsburgh Pride Festival
By Bob Karlovits
Published: Wednesday, June 6, 2012, 2:08 p.m.
Christine Bryan thinks a combination of events will make the Golden Triangle “just what downtowns are supposed to be” this weekend.
The final days of the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, games by the Pittsburgh Pirates and a concert by Melissa Etheridge as part of the Pittsburgh Pride celebration should easily top the crowds that jammed Downtown for a similar combination of events in 2011, she says.
Bryan is director of marketing for the Delta Foundation, the nonprofit that fosters interaction and understanding in the gay-lesbian-bisexual-transgender community. It sponsors Pittsburgh Pride, a 10-day festival that began last Friday and will wrap up on Sunday in Downtown.
The Saturday-night concert by Etheridge, a performer who came out as gay almost two decades ago, is the top show of Pittsburgh Pride Festival and Bryan says it already has sold 4,000 tickets. She expects it to easily top the crowd for the 2011 performance by Patti LaBelle.
Bryan believes Sunday's parade and PrideFest will draw more than the 67,000 people who came Downtown for the 2011 event.
The parade will march down the Boulevard of the Allies from Grant Street, and the accompanying PrideFest will feature more than 150 vendors on a closed-off part of Liberty Avenue between Sixth and 10th streets.
But, like the LaBelle show, the Etheridge concert is the focus of the weekend.
Etheridge, a multi-platinum performer, has never been one to back away from issues in her work. Her songs range from works of honesty such as “Yes I Am” to the global-warming warning, “I Need to Wake Up.”
She won the Songwriter of the Year award by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers in 1996 and has written an autobiography: “The Truth Is: My Life in Move and Music.”
Despite that honesty, Bryan says this is Etheridge's first appearance at a pridefest anywhere.
The ticketed concert will be on stage on Liberty Avenue between Ninth and 10th streets, and, Bryan says, it will be like last year's: no seats, to promote dancing.
From each ticket sold, $2 will be donated to the Harvey Milk Foundation, named after the first gay to be elected to office in California. His nephew, Stuart Milk, will be a guest at the event.
The time for the loosely scheduled, 90-minute show is about 8:45 p.m. Unlike the LaBelle concert, this show will not wait until after fireworks at the Pirates game.
But Bryan does joke about the Bucs providing a little competition this year anyway, even if there are not pyrotechnics. After the baseball game, there is a concert at PNC Park by Boyz II Men.
“But that's OK,” she says. “The more people Downtown, the better.”
Bob Karlovits is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com or 412-320-7852.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Garden Q&A: Firecracker vine OK for trellis?
- Kovacevic: Still waiting on Malkin, Crosby
- Rossi: Lack of together time showing for Penguins’ defense
- Shale oil, gas drilling boom wins favor with labor unions, thwarting environmentalists
- Community group to preserve Dravosburg cemetery’s history
- ‘Common knowledge’ about slot machines often wrong
- Fleury a bright spot among struggling Penguins in playoffs
- Norwin volleyball using fast-paced offense to offset lack of height at hitting positions
- Egg decorating turns to fight, charges in Brookline, police say
- Cool chemistry: Programs at Springdale library take inspiration from late science professor
- Talent on ice, effort off it help franchise grow hockey in Columbus