Press statements - Pride 2024

Pride ambassadors 2024

17. June 2024

Reading time: approx. 5 minutes

Fotocollage von den CSD-Botschafter:innen 2024 Barbie Breakout und Max Rogall

Leipzig Pride is exactly two months away and today we can finally introduce you to this year’s ambassadors!

With Barbie Breakout and Max Rogall, we are very proud to have two personalities at our side who not only inspire the queer community, but also encourage society as a whole to break down barriers and build bridges. This year’s motto “We vote for diversity!” could hardly be better represented. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our community for all your ambassador suggestions that have reached us!

As always, you can meet our two ambassadors live this year at the rally on 17 August 2024 on Augustusplatz and at the subsequent demonstration.

Foto von CSD-Botschafterin 2024 Barbie Breakout (Foto: Terry Withaker)
Foto: Terry Withaker

Barbie Breakout

Drag queen, activist, author, presenter and podcaster

Already successful as a hair & make-up artist, she started her second career in drag at the beginning of the 2000s, did shows, wrote columns and published her first book in 2012.

As a protest against anti-queer attacks in Russia, she sewed her mouth shut on camera in 2013 and became one of the most important queer activist voices in Germany overnight.

Since 2023, she has been the host of “Drag Race Germany”, the German spin-off of RuPaul’s successful show.

Barbie's greeting to Leipzig Pride 2024

Dear ones, even if it sometimes seems strange to celebrate together when it feels like the whole world is on fire, it is so incredibly important that we do not stop creating moments of queer joy that we can experience together, because we are also refuelling ourselves, we see ourselves reflected in the people around us and understand that we really are not alone. And so we are visible; for those who perhaps don’t yet dare to show themselves, who are still afraid, but also for those who wish for a world without us in it.

And especially when the worst things are being said about us again from the outside in order to turn us into enemy stereotypes; when politicians conjure up old fears on the backs of trans people in order to distract voters: When politicians conjure up old fears on the backs of trans people to distract the electorate from the fact that they have nothing to offer apart from conjuring up images of the enemy; when drag queens are suddenly staged as a threat to children; when hate speech appears acceptable in public discourse in Europe too and when a party that is already considered clearly anti-constitutional in many places is achieving record forecasts, it is precisely then that events such as a Pride are so important. After all, it’s never just about dancing, it’s also about meeting each other, it’s also about experiencing queer joy, it’s about inspiration, about encouragement, about exchanging ideas, networking and organising ourselves.

And even if our opinions differ from time to time, our goal is the same. We all need to learn and practise this again: that our fight for a more equal future for all is more important than our differences.

We must stop dividing ourselves and cancelling each other out if we want to achieve anything. Those who want to ban and imprison us are happy when we tear each other apart and march past us in goose-step while we are busy infighting.

A word to those for whom everything is still too political all the time, who aren’t interested in such serious words and who aren’t really interested in much apart from dancing and hooking up:

Be glad that you have all these privileges today. Many others have had to fight bitterly for them. And such privileges must be protected! By opening your eyes and ears and realising what is happening. By voting.

The election in Saxony is just around the corner. This is the next big opportunity to do something without much effort to preserve these privileges. So use your vote too! And no, there is no longer a perfect party for most of us, but again, it’s more important to focus on what we have in common rather than not voting at all.

Rosa von Praunheim once said many years ago: get out of the ‘Klappen’ (German slang for gay cruising spots) and into the streets. Today I want to say: get out of the comfort zone and into the streets!

I’m also talking about myself. We have become too comfortable in our privileges and are now finding it difficult to counter the shift to the right. I am grateful for the many people who are raising awareness on social media and are active there. But you shouldn’t confuse a few slides in Instagram stories with political activism, and that’s what we all need now.

We need to become more organised again, more bulky, more uncomfortable if we want to make a difference. Because those who want to abolish and ban us are not asleep. They know exactly which party they are voting for and don’t constantly cancel each other out.

And also to the non-queer people in this room: we need you now. We need allies who open their mouths in their rooms, where we are not, when someone says something queer-hostile, who speak up when prejudices are spread about us.

On that note, my dear ones:

Let’s celebrate and bathe in all the queer joy that Pridemonth brings, let’s recharge our batteries and then go out stronger and keep fighting for our rights.

Thank you.

Max Rogall

Queer activist and content creator

Max has been publishing a new video every day since 2022: As @321maxx, he introduces his community to queer news and history, clarifies terms and contexts and disarms anti-queer statements. Sometimes as an explainer, sometimes as a complainer, he creates an important counterpoint to the increasingly loud queer hostility on social media.

He was also a contestant in the third season of the queer dating show “Prince Charming” in 2021.

Max' greeting to Leipzig Pride 2024

Dear Leipzig – dear Queers and Allies!

I’m delighted to be an ambassador for Pride in Leipzig this year – because we need Pride more than ever this year. You might know me from social media or TV, where I use my platform to be loud against queerphobia. Unfortunately, this is all too necessary, because we all realise it: rejection and hatred against queer people is on the rise – and not just online.

Anti-democratic forces are growing stronger across the country, and this manifests itself very concretely in aggression towards us queer people. In politics, where untruths are spread about us and we are portrayed as the enemy, and in everyday life, where anti-queer violence is becoming increasingly common. Many people no longer even dare to come to Pride events because they are afraid of it.

Thank you for being there anyway. Thank you for being loud and visible. Because these forces must not be allowed to win – we will not be pushed back or made invisible. We must stop these anti-human policies before it is too late for our democracy and we all lose our hard-won rights again.

Two weeks after the Pride in Leipzig, the state elections here in Saxony are coming up. And according to surveys, almost a third of people in this federal state want to vote for a party that is definitely right-wing extremist. Let’s oppose this and show exactly what we stand for at Pride in the election: We are many, we are colourful – and we vote for diversity!


Leipzig Pride is, among others, supported by: