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Digital Subscriptions > GCN > 355 > FOUL FILTHY STINKING MUCK


Over its 50+ year history, Project Arts Centre has proven to be a worthy ally in the fight for LGBT+ liberation.Today, it continues to use its platform as an artist-led organisation to give the community a voice by hosting events and presenting queer performance in a way that no other theatre or arts centre in the country has. Hannah Tiernan elaborates. Images courtesy of the National Library Of Ireland.

As early as 1976, only two years after the establishment of the Irish Gay Rights Movement, Project teamed up with the group to present two plays by the London based lesbian and gay theatre company, Gay Sweatshop. Although Any Woman Can and Mister X were not the first ‘gay’ themed plays to be put on in Ireland, they were the first to tell the real stories and experiences of lesbian and gay people. The plays resulted in a funding crisis, with Dublin Corporation refusing to grant £6,000 to the centre. The decision resulted in a heated public debate with a letter to the editor of the Evening Press describing the plays as “...foul, filthy, stinking muck”. Although the corporation maintained that the decision related to uncertainty surrounding the lease of the premises and had nothing to do with the plays, Councillor Ned Brennan called them, “Funny Bunnies from across the water”. The Corporation was forced to revoke the decision when Project managed to purchase the site at East Essex Street.

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Welcome to our biggest and brightest issue of the year - our annual Pride Edition. We made a call out for members of our LGBT+ family to design our cover. All who entered are featured inside, and for the first time ever we have a bumper double cover by artists Gabriel Marques and Day Magee! Inside we round-up all the Prides taking place across Ireland alongside interviews with young people from rural areas who explain Pride’s importance. There’s a conversation between Will St Leger, the Dublin Pride Grand Marshall, and Bruce Coleman, an ACT UP activist who was in New York after Stonewall. There’s a remembrance of the Repeal movement and a feature about the prejudice faced by lesbian women and trans folk in barbershops. GCN also reaches out to the community; chatting to the myriad places where our magazine is delivered. And that’s only the tip of the Pride float. From all at GCN, we wish you a happy, safe and fabulous Pride season!