A show about class, violence, visibility, sexual freedom and community.
Welcome to Switchboard, written and performed by radical performance artist Astro-Zenica as an LGBT+ history month commission show by Bristol Museum & Art Gallery in association with Outstories Bristol.
A love letter to the radical queers, club promoters, party starters, drag artists, and volunteers at the switchboard. Most of all to Dale Wakefield, who opened the Switchboard at her home in Totterdown in 1975.
Dale and the team received thousands of calls to Switchboard. They listened to the fears, signposting to the club, offering rescue missions to those attacked on the street, and becoming a beacon of support during the AIDS crisis. All because of a belief in and commitment to the power of community.
Drawing on archival research, call logs call logs from The Bristol Lesbian and Gay Switchboard (1975 – 2012) and oral histories about queer nightlife and protest in the 1970s and 80s, join Astro-Zenica (House of Savalon) in the Weston Studio as they explore the myriad of codes and languages developed by queer people to reach out, hook-up and find community.
header image: Manu Matis