Backstreet Boys to rock SF Pride
by Seth Hemmelgarn
The Backstreet Boys will be one of the headlining acts on the main stage at San Francisco Pride on June 27, the Bay Area Reporter has learned.
Main stage producer Audrey Joseph, who was brought on board by the San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee only in April to line up talent for this year's 40th anniversary of the LGBT Pride Parade and festival, confirmed the news Tuesday, May 18.
The Backstreet Boys were already scheduled to be in San Francisco for a pair of concerts at the Warfield, according to Joseph and the band's website.
Besides the boy band, popular for hits such as "As Long as You Love Me," the lineup for Sunday, June 27, is expected to include Rose Royce ("Car Wash"), Martha Davis and the Motels ("Suddenly Last Summer"), and Andy Bell from Erasure (the band known for the song "A Little Respect").
Gaye Ann Bruno, spokeswoman for the Motels, could not confirm the group's participation because it had not yet received the contract and deposit from SF Pride officials.
Fittingly for this year's "Forty and Fabulous" Pride theme, the musical acts represent four decades of music.
Joseph, who's had only weeks to work on the line-up, said it feels "amazing" to have gathered the performers.
"We were so late in getting started, most of the big acts were already taken," said Joseph, who noted that San Francisco's Pride celebration is free – donations are collected at the gate – so event organizers aren't able to pay acts as much as they may be able to make in other cities.
"People who perform on our Pride stage do it because they want to," not for the money, she said.
Joseph, who last year had resigned as main stage producer after about 22 years on the job, was brought back in early April. That left her with just over two months to develop the main stage line-up, which draws hundreds of thousands of people who converge on Civic Center Plaza after the Pride Parade in downtown San Francisco.
In 2008, the main stage featured Lady Gaga, just before her career took off.
The tradition of trying to draw attention to what's new continues this year. Aside from acts like the Backstreet Boys, the line-up will also include groups such as Dangerous Muse, Hello Hollywood, and Hunter Valentine.
"We want to give everyone a taste of what may be going forward, just as we did with Lady Gaga," said Joseph.
She said performance times haven't been finalized, but she said as of now the Backstreet Boys would be performing mid-afternoon Sunday. The band is set to perform at the Warfield that night.
This year's Pride festivities are June 26-27. For more information, visit http://www.sfpride.org.