The exhibition opened last Thursday night to a selection of guests who’d helped the exhibition come into existence (an army of volunteers over 50 strong, plus our academic advisers and the extended Pink Singers family).
As part of this project, as well as a ton of factual and image research as mentioned by Hester, the choir has recorded over 16 hours of video footage collected from oral history interviews with choir members past and present.
The clips from these personal histories really bring this rich and fast-moving history to life; from stories of secretive liaisons and active persecution back in the 70s and 80s; right through to coming out to close family members over email in more recent years. London’s vibrant cultural mix, reflected in the choir, becomes evident as our video histories take us all over the world, from Singapore to Nottingham, from South Africa to South Wales, from Trinidad to Tooting.
Personally, over the last few months I’ve been responsible for co-ordinating the filming, transcribing and editing of these oral histories along with a small army of around 25 volunteers from the choir. I have genuinely laughed and cried (sometimes both at once) whilst watching the stories of those involved. It’s been a very humbling experience. I’m the same age as the choir itself, and my big take-out from the exhibition and the tales of individuals is just how dramatically the landscape of LGBT community has shifted in just a couple of generations, and how different my experiences have been compared to my peers who are just a few years older/younger.
You can see a sneak preview of the exhibition below.
Plan your visit now
14 June – 12 July 2013
Thursday & Friday evenings 6–9pm
Saturday & Sunday 10am–6pm
Audit House, 58 Victoria Embankment
Tube: Temple / Blackfriars
15 July – 18 August 2013
The Guardian, King’s Place
Tube: King’s Cross