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Voices of Pride

Amrita V Nair | Updated on June 21, 2021

Better together: Episodes feature stories of LGBTQ+ people from all over the world and across various epochs in time   -  ISTOCK.COM

Celebrating Pride month with a round-up of podcasts offering a range of perspectives from the LGBTQ+ community

* Masters’s interview style brims with empathy and a sort of ineffable gentleness that emboldens his guests to speak candidly and openly about their lives

* LGBT Q&A is one of the best podcasts that one can recommend to someone who may not fully understand why it is important to protect and support the rights of the LGBTQ+ community

* As guests share their life stories, struggles, achievements and their great passions, it is clear that their ability to live their most authentic lives is often the hard-won result of years of strife and trauma

***

June is celebrated as Pride Month by the LGBTQ+ community across the world. What began as a commemoration of the Stonewall uprising in New York City in 1969 — a clash between the police and gay rights activists, now considered the first major protest in history for gay and transgender rights — has now become a celebration of the community globally. This month, Active Voice joins these celebrations of Pride with a round-up of podcasts offering a range of perspectives from the LGBTQ+ community.

The Two Princes

Produced by Gimlet Media and created by Kevin Christopher Snipes, The Two Princes is a fantasy audiodrama about princes from rival kingdoms who are forced to go on a quest together into a forbidden forest to save their lands from a mysterious curse, and fall in love along the way. Born out of Snipes’s need to remedy the sense of isolation that he himself felt in his childhood due to the lack of LGBTQ+ representation in media and pop culture, the podcast ran for three seasons, concluding in late 2020. It features an all-star cast led by Broadway favourite Noah Galvin as Prince Rupert of the West and Tony Award winner Ari’el Stachel as Prince Amir of the East. Galvin and Stachel are joined by several television and silver screen legends, including Emmy award winners Christine Baranski and Matthew Rhys. Together, they bring this hilarious and heart-warming adventure to life. Listen at: https://gimletmedia.com/shows/the-two-princes

History is Gay

Created and hosted by self-described “queer nerds” Leigh and Gretchen, History is Gay is a podcast that combines their passion for justice, history and good storytelling to bring listeners the stories of LGBTQ+ history-makers. Supported by painstaking research and regular interviews with other historians, scholars and experts, the podcast presents the stories of these “underappreciated and overlooked” historic figures in a riveting and lively manner. Leigh and Gretchen also take the time and effort to situate the events or people they talk about in their historical context — thereby ensuring that listeners can truly appreciate the challenges surrounding the protagonists of these episodes and the courage it took for them to pursue lives in which they could be true to themselves. Episodes feature stories from all over the world and across various epochs in time — from the Victorian Era and the trial of Oscar Wilde to the first Pride Month and the creation of the rainbow pride flag. Listen at: https://www.historyisgaypodcast.com/

LGBT Q&A

Hosted by writer and journalist Jeffery Masters, and produced by The Advocate magazine, in partnership with GLAAD, LGBT Q&A seeks to bring you “weekly interviews with the most interesting LGBTQ + people in the world.” A quick skim-through of the episode list will convince you that the podcast lives up to this lofty claim. Masters has interviewed such luminaries as Pete Buttigieg — the first openly gay US presidential candidate, writer and feminist icon Roxane Gay, and writer and media personality Alok Vaid-Menon. Masters’s interview style brims with empathy and a sort of ineffable gentleness that emboldens his guests to speak candidly and openly about their lives. In my opinion, this is one of the best podcasts that one can recommend to someone who may not fully understand why it is important to protect and support the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. As guests share their life stories, struggles, achievements and their great passions, it is clear that their ability to live their most authentic lives is often the hard-won result of years of strife and trauma. It dawns upon a listener that as a society, all of us have the responsibility and the ability to prevent future generations from having to fight these same battles again. Listen at: https://www.lgbtqpodcast.com/

Shuddh Desi Gay

Produced by Riya Mukherjee Word Pictures and boasting a hilariously punny name that heralds the kind of goofy humour that it serves up, Spotify India original Shuddh Desi Gay is a truly delightful Hinglish podcast in which hosts Yogi and Kabeer share their experience of what it is like to be a gay couple in India. Yogi and Kabeer are former radio jockeys — which is perhaps why this is one of the more professional sounding and seemingly effortless duologue-style podcasts out there. They also have the extraordinary ability to infuse humour and heart into the subject of each episode and even into difficult topics such as homophobia — the result of what they describe throughout the podcast as a deliberate choice to keep things light. Personally, I think that this approach is uniquely powerful in getting their messages across and in reaching wider audiences who may tune in to listen to their witty anecdotes and banter; and end up gaining new insights and perspectives in the process. At the same time, episodes of the podcast also have a segment called ‘Let’s Get One Thing Straight’ in which Yogi and Kabeer seek to clarify concepts or ideas that they wish more cisgendered and straight people knew about — but again with a light touch and a very generous serving of empathy and compassion. Listen at: https://open.spotify.com/show/4q23gI2519JS1FqWAj5pLf

 

Amrita V Nair   -  BUSINESS LINE

 

Amrita V Nair is a freelance writer, public policy specialist and podcast enthusiast

Twitter: @amritanairv

Published on June 18, 2021

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