Panti Bliss versus homophobia – gay rights campaigner Belfast-bound for Amnesty Lecture
Amnesty International has announced that controversial Dublin drag queen, Panti Bliss, will deliver this year’s Amnesty Belfast Pride Lecture.
Earlier this year Panti Bliss, the drag persona of Rory O'Neill, took to the airwaves and the stage of Dublin's Abbey Theatre to blast homophobia and homophobes.
With her Noble Call speech, Panti went viral, attracting over half a million YouTube views. Fintan O'Toole of the Irish Times called it “the most eloquent Irish speech since Daniel O'Connell”.
Announcing her intention to deliver the Amnesty Lecture in Belfast, Panti Bliss said:
“I told the Abbey Theatre audience that people who actively campaign for gay people to be treated in an inferior fashion are, in my gay opinion, homophobic. I have a feeling that message is just as relevant in Belfast as it is in Dublin.”
Patrick Corrigan, Northern Ireland Programme Director of Amnesty International, said:
“We are delighted that Panti is Belfast-bound to deliver the Amnesty Pride Lecture. She is one of Ireland’s most articulate advocates against the discrimination and persecution of LGBTI people everywhere and that is an important message for Belfast and the world.”
The Amnesty Pride Lecture will take place at Belfast’s MAC theatre on Thursday 31 July and will be followed by a question and answer session chaired by William Crawley.
Tickets are available for £3 from The MAC box office: 028 9023 5053 http://themaclive.com/shows/panti-versus-homophobia
The Amnesty International Belfast Pride Lecture is an annual event. Last year the lecture was delivered by House of Commons Speaker, John Bercow MP.