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Digital Subscriptions > DIVA Magazine > September 2017 > Madrid’s rainbow past and present

Madrid’s rainbow past and present

BELLA QVIST EXPLORES THE HISTORY AND CULTURE OF SPAIN’S CAPITAL, AND THE BIGGEST PRIDE EVENT OF THE YEAR

WORLD PRIDE |

Stepping off the plane at Madrid Barajas airport, the air is warm, dry and full of anticipation. I have sensed ever since boarding that I may not be the only queer in the Spanish capital this weekend, but I have yet to realise just how much of a rainbow explosion I am diving into. That fact that Madrid is combining EuroPride with World Pride makes this celebration extra big; and because 2017 marks 40 years since the first LGBTQ+ pride parade in Spain, this year is extra special.

Founded in the 9th century, Madrid is steeped in history and the lingering political hangover from dictator Francisco Franco, who ruled the country until his death in 1975, meant a somewhat hesitant start to the fight for LGBTQ+ rights. But they quickly caught up. Spain became the fourth country in the world to introduce equal marriage in 2005 and in 2013 a study from the Pew Research Centre revealed Spain to be the most gayfriendly country polled, whilst 2016 Buzzfeed data ranked Spain to be one of the most trans friendly destinations.

They soon prove it. Having hopped on the metro from the airport, I walk down the bustling, narrow streets from Tribunal station, breathing in the alternative yet friendly vibe - and the rainbow flags are everywhere. I can’t wait to perch myself outside one of the many streetside restaurants, sip a cold beer and munch on the salty crisps that always come with it. However it’s time for a siesta and so after stopping to take a picture of a small dog wearing a rainbow scarf, I head to my room.

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About DIVA Magazine

Who better to cover our first ever theatre issue than star of stage and screen, Sophie Ward? The former Vogue model has won legions of fans throughout an impressive career spanning 40 years, and in our feature interview we talk to her about her highlights, as well as the progress of LGBT equality in that time. Also in this issue… West End Girls: Your favourite musicals reimagined with a lady-loving twist Theatre for all: Carrie Lyell looks beyond the bright lights of Broadway to find exciting, innovative and inclusive theatre Reclaiming bossy: DIVA chats to the hosts of a new political podcast for young women Emotional infidelity: Are you cheating on your partner without knowing it? Why we love body positive YouTuber Brittney Keating Lucy and Georgina Spraggan on becoming foster carers Fight like a girl: Meet the women of MMA Plus interviews with Lauren Sanderson, MJ Chan, Ashley McGuire and more!
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