IN AN unexpected twist, Brighton Pride will be celebrated this year.

But the celebrations will look very different from the rambunctious weekend the city is used to seeing.

The future of the 2020 event was cast into serious doubt with the outbreak of the coronavirus bringing the entire country to a halt.

At the start of last month, organisers were forced to announce that the three-day extravaganza would not be filling Brighton and Hove’s streets with its customary colourful parade this year, saying that it had been postponed until 2021.

The Argus:

But, virus or no virus, Pride’s infectious party spirit could not stay away from the city for two years on the trot.

So, organisers have set up a digital event to bring the fun into the living rooms of its devoted fans and mark the 30th anniversary of the event.

Centred around the original Pride weekend of August 1 and 2, there will be a variety of “performances and highlights” from the programme which had already been planned for this year’s event, though it is not yet known whether Pride in the Park headliner Mariah Carey will make an appearance.

The Argus:

These performances will be tied together by comperes presenting live from a custom-built studio in the city and will be interspersed with archive footage showing festival favourites from years gone by.

A spokesman for the event said: “This year’s Brighton Pride had already confirmed artists from the main stage, Cabaret Stage, BAME Stage, Pride Dance Big Top, QueerTown, Trans Fabuloso Stage and many more and we intend to reflect the full flavour and diversity of the Pride In The Park Festival and Parade to enjoy at home.”

All footage will be free to stream on the Brighton Pride website, YouTube and on other platforms which are yet to be announced, allowing people across the world to join in with the festivities.

Paul Kemp, director of Brighton Pride, said: “Brighton and Hove Pride is such an important community fundraiser for our LGBTQ+ groups and to not have a Pride event this year really affects our ability to raise these essential funds and could seriously jeopardise the future of some groups.

The Argus:

“We really hope everyone gets behind this fundraising effort.

“Brighton and Hove Pride is a time to come together to celebrate and embrace diversity and inclusion in our great city, and just because we are not able to meet in person doesn’t mean we can’t support and celebrate our fantastic LGBTQ+ communities.”

Viewers are encouraged to make a donation so Brighton and Hove Pride can continue to raise funds for community organisations including The Brighton Rainbow Fund and Pride Social Impact Fund.

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