Queer Lisboa and Queer Porto have confirmed today that their 24th and 6th editions, respectively, are being held as in-person events. Queer Lisboa 24 will take place 18-26 September 2020, at Cinema São Jorge, with a Special Screening at the Terrace of Cinemateca Portuguesa, and Queer Porto 6 will take place at Teatro Rivoli and at the Rectory of the University of Porto’s “Casa Comum”, 13-17 October 2020.
As a consequence of the budgetary cuts and the restrictions imposed by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, there was a need for the readjustment of the festival programme, its guests and parallel events. And while “social distancing” has been talked about to exhaustion, the Festivals want to reiterate their physical format, rejecting the idea of “non socialisation”, but in conformity with all the guidelines imposed by the Directorate-General for Health, namely the pivotal “physical” distancing.
In a year in which we think is essential to celebrate the presence and the strength of the many queer expressions and communities, the biggest highlight is certainly the Queer Focus strand, consisting of six distinct programmes, each of them defined by a keyword: Cruising, Skin, Memory, Sex, Bodies and Play. These are the concepts guiding this year’s editions, evoking expressions, identities, and practices of queer culture that have been seriously threatened or downplayed throughout this period of pandemic, and which reaffirm the need for reflection, namely on the similarities between the current scenario and aspects of the LGBTI+ communities’ recent history. With this in mind, the two Festivals are also hosting a series of events which will evoke the history of LGBTI+ activism, as well as the problematic of HVI/AIDS in our present realities.
Each of the Queer Focus programmes, six in Lisbon and three in Porto, includes, besides the screening of films by Peter Strickland, Jennifer Reeves, Luther Price and many more, a live performance piece and a series of talks and debates with André Tecedeiro, Fernanda Eugénio and Karol Radziszewski, among others, which, in the context of the very long period of distancing we all have been subject to in the last months, were designed with the ultimate goal of reclaiming physical presence and bringing virtual mediation to a minimum.
Furthermore, we are also putting together some Special Screenings, among them, at Queer Lisboa, the seminal French documentary Race d’Ep! (1979), by Lionel Soukaz and Guy Hocquenghem, at the Terrace of Cinemateca Portuguesa, a screening held in connection with the new exhibition by Portuguese artists João Pedro Vale and Nuno Alexandre Ferreira, at Stolen Books gallery, in Lisbon, from 23 September to 23 October.
Also in Lisbon, the festival will host Freedom, Participation and Activism, an event made in partnership with GAT Grupo de Ativistas em Tratamentos and CheckpointLX, and part of the initiative “Lisbon Without AIDS – Fast-Track City”, which consists of a debate preceded by the screening of the short film Thrive (2019), by Jamie di Spirito. The debate, moderated by Sofia Crisóstomo and João Brito, will welcome, as guests, Maria José Campos, Paolo Gorgoni, Luma Andrade, Sérgio Vitorino and Pedro Silvério Marques.
The complete programme, parallel activities, juries and official guests of Queer Lisboa 24, will be announced at a press conference at the beginning of September. Queer Porto will also announce the details of its 6th edition at a press conference at the beginning of October.