What’s On: A Guide To Auckland Pride Festival 2024

By Megan Watts
This year's senior artists are fashion activists The Pacific Sisters. Photo / Auckland Pride

As we step into February, Pride Month, we welcome the start of Auckland Pride festival, taking place around Tāmaki Makaurau. The vibrant schedule of programming spotlights Aotearoa’s incredible queer creatives, with legends like The Pacific Sisters and Pounamu Rurawhe at the forefront of this celebration that brings communities together.

Auckland Pride festival has long been held in February as an ode to the Hero Parade, which celebrated the LGBTQIA+ community in the 90s and saw hundreds of thousands join in uplifting the queer community.

The 2024 festival is grounded in the theme Ki Tua / Beyond Paradise, and this year’s festival will focus on the idea of what is chronologically before and metaphysically beyond, championing queer histories and futures in a joyous celebration of community and unity.

The programme showcases a dynamic array of discussions, activities and parties to fill your calendar, along with ample ways to show support for the expression of identity, launched yesterday with Te Tīmatanga, a performance work honouring Takatāpui (a te reo Māori term for the rainbow community) and te ao Māori, which featured legendary creatives like Rosanna Raymond, Pounamu Rurawhe and others.

It kicks off a month of vibrant creative expression. Discover our selection of this year’s must-sees and can’t-misses around Auckland, peruse the full Auckland Pride programme, and get involved in this highly-anticipated and colourful festival.

'Kiss Goodbye to Judgement' will showcase photography at Silo Park. Photo / Auckland Pride
'Kiss Goodbye to Judgement' will showcase photography at Silo Park. Photo / Auckland Pride

Until February 21: Kiss Goodbye to Judgement

See love in all its forms come to life through the lens of this incredible photographic exhibition at Silo Park. Capturing raw and intimate moments within the homes of LGBTQIA+ couples across New Zealand, Kiss Goodbye to Judgement brings to the forefront the comfortable nature of all love within our spaces. Cnr Beaumont St and Jellicoe St, Auckland City, Auckland.

February 2 to March 2: Lesbian Sapphic Flicks

Sit down with a box of popcorn at the Charlotte Museum Te Whare Takatāpui-Wāhine o Aotearoa for a film festival with a queer twist. To celebrate lesbian sapphic cinema, a fantastic variety of movies, short films, TV shows, and documentaries will be showing throughout February, making space for a community to be reflected on the screen. 1A Howe St, Freemans Bay, Auckland.

February 3: Queer Yarns

A fun, free, hands-on event at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki that’s part of the Pride line-up. This Saturday from 11am-4pm learn how to crochet your own Pride flag and use your creative flair to show your support for your rainbow whānau. No need to bring along a bag of supplies, instructions and all necessary equipment will be provided on the day, with an easy how-to demonstration. Wellesley St East, Auckland City, Auckland.

February 3: Loud and Proud

When it comes to Aotearoa’s LGBTQIA+ community and its music space, the two have a long history of both fluidity and diversity; queer and trans people have been integral to many musical movements, from disco to rock ‘n’ roll, and some of the groundbreaking genres we enjoy today. Why not celebrate both for a day (and night) with an event highlighting the diversity and creativity of Tāmaki Makaurau’s queer music scene? Loud and Proud will showcase a hand-picked selection of some of the best experimental and underground musicians — including P.H.F, Jess Robinson, Roy Irwin and more — at various spots along Karangahape Rd (Pitt St Methodist Church, The Audio Foundation and Whammy Bar) and is an event not to be missed. Tickets are available from Undertheradar.co.nz.

Pride Elevates presents a special arts programme. Photo / Auckland Pride
Pride Elevates presents a special arts programme. Photo / Auckland Pride

February 3 to March 2: Pride Elevates

Returning for another year as part of Te Tīmatanga, the Pride Elevates programme is bringing queer stories and representation to the forefront of conversation, with an impressive panel of both established and emerging artists reflecting on this year’s theme: Ki Tua/Beyond Paradise. Playing with ideas such as world-building and false utopias, as well as contemplating paradise and the potential paths to reach it, Pride Elevates will see artists tackle a number of dynamic and thought-provoking narratives at various locations across Auckland.

February 9: Te Wai Aronui

Step into the past and the present with Te Wai Aronui, a unique self-guided tour of Rangipuke (Albert Park). By using the PickPath app, you can either move with the curves of Te Wai Ariki (water springs) or explore the park’s landmarks, which reflect a multi-dimensional history of Aotearoa. Sing along to waiata while walking around the space or meet some of the colourful characters embedded in the experience. The tour not only offers an opportunity to discover the natural wonders of Rangipuke, but also the integral queer pasts and narratives that make it a sanctuary within the city of Tāmaki Makaurau. 33-43 Princes St, Auckland City, Auckland.

Pacific Sisters ‘N da Fale is an immersive workshop led by pioneering fashion activists. Photo /  Auckland Pride
Pacific Sisters ‘N da Fale is an immersive workshop led by pioneering fashion activists. Photo / Auckland Pride

February 10: Pacific Sisters ‘N da Fale

Discover the colourful world of the Pacific Sisters at this very special workshop and kōrero. A collective that passionately advocates for Māori, Pasifika, and queer identities while affirming the power of community, the pioneering group (which includes Lisa Reihana, Rosanna Raymond, Ani O’Neill, Suzanne Tamaki, Selina Haami, Feeonaa Wall, Niwhai Tupaea, Henzart @ Henry Ah-Foo Taripo and Jaunnie ‘Ilolahia) has made its mark across a range of collaborative crafts, such as fashion, performance, music and film. Pacific Sisters ‘N da Fale will offer immersive talks and styling sessions at Samoa House, 11am-4pm, giving attendees the chance to connect with the collective and their united vision — and weave a little bit of imagination in the seams — for a day of creativity and togetherness. 283 Karangahape Rd, Auckland City, Auckland.

Playwright Victor Rodger will feature in this year's Samesame But Different.  Photo / Jason Oxenham
Playwright Victor Rodger will feature in this year's Samesame But Different. Photo / Jason Oxenham

February 12-17: Samesame but Different

Immerse yourself in the power of queer literature and dialogue at one of Samesame but Different’s performances and discussions. Expressing rainbow histories and uplifting the next generation of queer writers, the literary festival spans six days at various locations across Tāmaki Makaurau and includes several panel events with the likes of Josiah Morgan, Zephyr Zhang, Murdoch Keane, Michael Giacon, Marianne Elliot, author Etta Bollinger and acclaimed playwright Victor Rodger.

Big Gay Out, 2023. Photo / Auckland Pride
Big Gay Out, 2023. Photo / Auckland Pride

February 18: Big Gay Out

As the name suggests, this event is a fun day and an unmissable part of Auckland Pride; rock out in size and style for a day of family-friendly fun and fabulousness. Big Gay Out is returning to Coyle Park, Point Chevalier, this summer and will feature music, markets and dance to affirm itself as the event of the season. And with performances from Kita Mean, Tayce, DJ Jordan Ekra and more, it might just nab the title. This year the event is ticketed, in order to accurately measure attendance numbers (for health and safety purposes), so don’t jump on the bandwagon too late, or you might be without a spot at the party of the month. 528 Point Chevalier Rd, Point Chevalier, Auckland.

The Auckland Pride March and Party Festival is a key event on the Pride schedule. Photo / Sylvie Whinray
The Auckland Pride March and Party Festival is a key event on the Pride schedule. Photo / Sylvie Whinray

February 25: Auckland Pride March & Party

An annual event that needs no introduction, show your support, love and awe of Tāmaki Makaurau’s LGBTQIA+ community at this year’s Pride March. The penultimate celebration and high point of Pride, the day aims to elevate and amplify the voices of Aotearoa’s intersex community and kicks off at 2pm at Aotea Square. 291-297 Queen St, Auckland City, Auckland.

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