Chicago's Pride celebration began June 28 at the Center on Halsted with a performance by Prince Poppycock, the opera-singing entertainer known for his time on America's Got Talent.
Poppycock took the stage after a few hours of drinks, hors d'oeuvres and music on the Center's third-floor patio. Boystown locals and out-of-towners piled into the building for a night of mingling, dancing and celebrating the festivities of Pride weekend.
Poppycock began his performance with a few jokes, telling the audience "You know pride is a sin, right?" and "I hope you all know Italian." The fourth-place contestant on the fifth season of "Talent" showed his with songs showcasing his vocal range and Pride-related comedy.
Poppycock's performance was preceded by DJ Amy Alderman, a Richmond, Virginia-based queer musician. She supplied remixed dance hits from artists like Jennifer Lopez and Lady Gaga during the pre-performance party. The party was almost halted by a large hailstorm that lasted about 15 minutesbut after the hail melted and the clouds parted, attendees were elated to see a rainbow overlooking Halsted. Attendees and Alderman herself took a moment to cheer and snap a photo of the rainbow ( and Pride symbol ).
Center on Halsted CEO Modesto Tico Valle made a speech just before Poppycock took the stage to remind the audience and the LGBTQ+ community of the transgender individuals who ignited the Stonewall riots. Valle honored the individuals by prompting other LGBTQ+ community members to uplift the transgender community as often as they can.