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OUTing the Past Festival

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Join us to explore LGBT+ history and activism as Derby becomes a hub within this national festival.

About this Event

With presentations and opportunities for discussion and creativity, this event will both draw on, and celebrate, the research and creative practice of our partners.

The event will include:

  • Sharing highlights from Derbyshire LGBT+ and National Lottery Heritage Funded project Other Stories, which documents LGBT+ stories from across Derbyshire:
  • Reflecting on the queerness of Shakespeare's play, Romeo and Juliet, in his own time and ours with 1623 Theatre Company. This presentation entitled Sweet Sorrow - Queer R&J will connect to Joseph Wright of Derby's painting, Romeo and Juliet in Derby Museums' collection.
  • Dr Freya Gowrley from the University of Derby explores the exchange of gifts between Lady Eleanor Butler (1739-1829) and Sarah Ponsonby (1755-1831), known popularly as the Ladies of Llangollen. Their belongings included chocolate drinking cups, now held at the British Museum, made at the Derby Porcelain Factory on Nottingham Road. Freya's new book, Domestic Space in Britain, 1750-1840: Materiality, Sociability and Emotion will be available in spring 2021.
  • Tales of Derby Women Past - spoken word pieces written and performed by She Speaks UK Poets. The project was commissioned as part of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site Great Place Scheme funded by National Lottery Heritage Fund and Arts Council England, produced by Beam.
  • Looking Back, Looking Forward, a series of poems commemorating 50 years since the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality in the UK. Looking at LGBTQ+ life 50 years ago, life now and what life may be like 50 years in the future. First commissioned in 2017, and presented by LGB-Qwerty, in association with Derbyshire LGBT+.

The event will be British Sign Language interpreted.

Suitable for adults and young people (under 18s must be accompanied by an adult for our Zoom sessions).

Image: Chocolate drinking cups belonging to Lady Eleanor Butler (1739–1829) and Sarah Ponsonby (1755–1831), known popularly as the Ladies of Llangollen. © The Trustees of the British Museum.

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