A Rainbow in the Village 2016

A RAINBOW IN THE VILLAGE DANCE Paekakariki - Labour Weekend 2016
Press Release

Paekakariki - Labour Weekend 2016 In 1986, Wham’s ‘I’m Your Man’ was the number one hit for several weeks on the New Zealand music charts. George Michael, one half of Wham, later came out as gay after hiding his sexuality for many years on advice from his music producers and in fear of hurting his mother. In the same year in New Zealand, the Homosexual Law Reform came into effect, decriminalizing sexual relations between males aged 16 and over. Before this, men who were ‘caught’ having consensual sex with one another were liable for prosecution and a term of imprisonment. The debate surrounding the HLR was heated and highly divisive with one side urging the gay community to “go back to the sewers where you come from” and the other side encouraging gays and lesbians to “come out, be blatant and proud”. Thirty years on in Aotearoa, the LGBTI communities now enjoy the same human rights afforded every New Zealander including the right to marry and not to be discriminated against. This year has seen a number of celebrations to mark the 30 year milestone, and coming up this Labour Weekend is Paekakariki on the Kapiti Coast’s turn with an old school gay disco at the local hall. A Rainbow in the Village Dance will feature two of Wellington’s well known ‘out’ DJs – DJ Bullitt and DJ dGARE, the duo that makes up Vinyl and Proud, as well as members of the iconic Drag King Troupe with a brief performance. “This event is a tribute to the dances we use to enjoy back in the day when we were fighting for our rights to love who we chose – openly without fear of discrimination or violence and with pride”, says Pat McIntosh one half of the organising crew. “We’ve come a long way in this country to recognise the human rights of our rainbow communities with the passing of significant legislation over the past few decades and this is our way of marking that. We still have a way to go as some of our younger ones are showing up in disturbing numbers in mental health, suicide, bullying, and homelessness statistics, and this work will continue.” Proceeds raised through the dance are being donated to Georgina Beyer, the world’s first transgender MP and staunch fighter of the rights of LGBTI communities in Aotearoa. Georgina recently announced that her health has declined and she is no longer able to be as actively involved in political and community life as she once was. “Georgina has given so much to the rainbow communities for so many years. She’s an icon and a world leader in LGBTI rights and she is now fighting a very personal battle of a different kind. We want to give something back to her as a small token of our appreciation and couldn’t think of a better way to do it than with a big old gay disco”, says Val Little the other half of the organising group. “We promise non stop dancing to your favourite gay anthems, a cash bar, snacks for sale, entertainment, and a fun night for all.” People are encouraged to dress up in ‘80’s fabulous’ outfits and naturally they can expect to hear a few Wham hits on the night. Event Details A Rainbow in the Village Dance – Sat 22nd October (Labour Weekend) 7pm – midnight St Peter’s Village Hall, Paekakariki Tickets $20 waged, $10 unwaged available through eventfinda, limited door sales. Cash bar only, R18