• Международный фестиваль Квир-культуры в Санкт-Петербурге

English (United Kingdom)Russian (CIS)

Valery Panyushkin

well-known Russian journalist and writer

I would sincerely like for the Queer Festival to not have to exist. I would want people to go on stage to sing a song or play a part, not to fight for their rights and the rights of their friends. The very fact that it even occurred to someone to organize a festival for tolerance and against homophobia is evidence to the fact that homophobia in Russia exists and that tolerance in Russia is scarce. I understand why many artists refuse to support the festival: they think that the problems of gays and lesbians do not concern them, because these artists themselves (and their public) are not gay or lesbian. This position is understandable, but nearsighted. First of all, no single person can be truly happy while there are people around him or her who are unhappy. Secondly, phenomenon of queer culture is just plain interesting. Interesting because we don’t know it.

I would like to wish the audiences of the Queer Festival to have an open mind. The more tolerant they will be, the more new and interesting things they will discover. I wish the organizers and participants of the Festival for their Festival to one day lose its relevance. So that one day there is no more need to prove that every person has the right to love whomever he or she wants, play any music or write any poetry they want. So that one day the artist will be judged by the quality of their art and not for whom and how they love.

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