A long list of LGBTQ+ celebrities joined forces for Can’t Cancel Pride, a virtual benefit to support LGBTQ+ communities most impacted by Covid-19. Celesbian appearances included Hayley Kiyoko, Cara Delevingne, Melissa Etheridge, and Lena Waithe. The one-hour special, produced by iHeartRadio and P&G, was hosted by Laverne Cox and Elvis Duran.
The event featured a range of stunning musical performances by artists like Sia, Ciara, Katy Perry, Billy Porter, Big Freedia, and Kim Petras. Though each performer did their set remotely, they each found a way to incorporate Pride cheer into the show — Tank & the Bangas performed from a Pride float in New Orleans, while Adam Lambert sang from a disco-themed stage at his house.
In between performances, attendees took turns explaining the significance of each color of the Pride rainbow.
“Gilbert Baker designed the rainbow flag in the ‘70s and orange symbolized healing, just like music heals us all,” Bebe Rexha said just before introducing Etheridge, who delivered a passionate rendition of “Come to My Window.”
Yellow “stands for sunlight and joy,” actor and singer Titus Burgess said before Perry’s set. “Yes, I said it: joy. And joy can be hard to find right now especially when you got racism and coronavirus co-pandemic’ing out in these streets.”
Kiyoko added, “Purple is all about spirit and during these challenging times, if anything captures the spirit of a bright and unified future, it’s LGBTQ youth.”
The event also included Black and brown in the Pride flag, in honor of the intersectionality between LGBTQ+ rights and racial justice. As Porter concluded: “Tonight we lift our rainbow flag high, and the values it represents – life, unity, healing, joy, nature, harmony and spirit. Don’t worry children, we’re still gonna dance. And while we do, we affirm our solidarity with our black and brown family fighting for their rights and lives right now, and we ask them to support us. Because no one is free to live the lives we love until all of us are free.”
All proceeds from Can’t Cancel Pride went toward “LGBTQ+ organizations with a track record of positive impact and support of the LGBTQ+ community,” per a press release. These included GLAAD, SAGE, The Trevor Project, the National Black Justice Coalition, CenterLink and OutRight Action International.