Opera North celebrates queer histories and identities this February with a trio of exciting events at the Howard Assembly Room: an evening of song and entertainment with drag icon Divina de Campo, a screening of legendary documentary film Paris is Burning, and the first of the Howard Assembly Room’s new HAR Late events – combining ground-breaking documentary Sisters with Transistors with sets from some of the most exciting DJs on the UK’s electronic music scene.

An Evening with Divina de Campo

Drag royalty Divina de Campo gets celebrations underway on Saturday 10 February at 7pm. Known for her high soprano and four octave range, Divina made her musical theatre debut in Chicago the Musical, later winning Best Performer in a Musical at the 2022 UK Theatre Awards for her starring role in the stage adaption of Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

This intimate concert, which Divina describes as an education in “how to cut your teeth as an old school drag queen”, sees her accompanied by her pianist on the Howard Assembly Room’s Steinway for an evening of showtunes. She promises “lots of divas”, “lots of fun”, and a few “naughty bits”!

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Divina de Campo. Photo credit Kelvin Gray, Oh My Media.

Paris Is Burning

On Thursday 22 February, Jennie Livingstone’s 1990 cult classic Paris is Burning comes to the big screen. The film explores New York’s Ballroom scene of the mid- to late-1980s and the queer, African American and Latinx communities at its heart. Exploring race, class, gender and sexuality in contemporary America, Paris Is Burning has won multiple awards and, in 2016, was added to the USA’s National Film Registry in recognition of its historical, cultural and aesthetic contribution to film history.

Before the film, Dr Andrew Moor from Manchester Metropolitan University will discuss the importance of the work within the field of LGBTQ+ film history. The talk begins at 7.30pm, with the film showing at 8.15pm.

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Paris Is Burning. Jennie Livingstone, 1990.

HAR Late: Sisters with Transistors

The first in the Howard Assembly Room’s new HAR Late series wraps up the celebrations on Friday 23 February. The night kicks off with a screening of Lisa Rovner’s award-winning documentary Sisters with Transistors, revealing untold histories of the women whose radical innovations with technology and sound redefined the boundaries of music.

After the film the dancefloor opens for live sets from three exciting artists currently making waves on the UK electronic music scene: Loula Yorke, Nik Nak and Gracie T.  Doors open at 7pm.

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Gracie T.

Tickets for LGBTQ+ History Month events can be bought individually or as part of a package deal: bookings across two events receive 10% discount, bookings across all three receive 12.5% discount.

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