MADO, Madrid Pride, is the name given to the celebrations on Madrid’s streets during Gay Pride Week, where the central event is the Gay Parade, the biggest in Europe, which this year will be on 6 July. The MADO celebrations include open-air concerts, parties, art, culture and sport, all in and around the Chueca district, right in the city centre, not forgetting, of course, the unbeatable gay and lesbian options offered by Madrid, a point of reference for other major world capitals.
MADO presents itself, year after year, as a true Festival of Diversity, a party open to everyone, impregnated with a broad multi-ethnic and cultural character. Ever since 2007, when Madrid was Europride capital (the Official European Pride Festival), Madrid Pride’s prestige and importance has grown and grown.
As a result, MADO has been twice been judged and awarded “Best gay event in the world” (2009 and 2010, MTV Tripout Gay Travel Awards). This international recognition was reaffirmed last October when Madrid was unanimously chosen by Interpride delegates to host World Pride (the Official Worldwide Pride Festival) in 2017. We will be the fifth city in the world to host this event, which makes Madrid the indisputable leader and reference for the global LGBT community and will no doubt have a spectacular impact from now until 2017 on tourism and the economy, apart from the legacy that hosting World Pride will leave in our city.
This year, 2013, MADO takes place from Friday 28 June to Sunday 7 July. The official proclamation and start of the festivities in Chueca is on Wednesday 3 July, and our herald on this occasion is Paloma San Basilio. The parade will be held on Saturday 6 July, with the closing ceremony taking place at the reception point for all the people and floats taking part: the symbolic Puerta de Alcalá gate.
This year we have several settings: Plaza de Chueca, Plaza del Rey (site of the cultural festival Muestra-t), Calle Fuencarral, Plaza de Callao, and the Puerta de Alcalá gate, as well as the “welcome and cultural space” at Plaza Vázquez de Mella. You can see the complete programme with dates and times here.
In recent years the Madrid Pride celebrations have attracted more than two million participants, including people from Madrid itself and visitors and tourists from the rest of Spain, Europe and the world. The Madrid Pride Gay Pride festivities have become one of Spain’s most popular festivals in their own right. Valencia has its Fallas, Pamplona its San Fermines, the Canary Islands their Carnival and now Madrid has its Pride, the true “Festival of Madrid”.
This city event invites everyone to come together to celebrate equality and diversity in an entertaining, fun way which nevertheless recognises the claims and achievements of the LGBT community. It is one the most important images that Madrid projects to the world. So not only do we speak of Madrid Pride but also, thanks to this festival, of Madrid with pride.