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Sam Smith, Munroe Bergdorf and Lady Phyll give passionate call to arms for LGBT community in alternative queen’s speech

Vic Parsons December 23, 2019

Cast of Dazed's Qweens Speech. (YouTube)

A queer “Qween’s Speech” from LGBT+ icons including Sam Smith, Munroe Bergdorf and Lady Phyll has been released by Dazed, just in time for Christmas.

The cast of Britain’s LGBT+ icons share a message of queer resistance for 2020 in the three-minute film, by filmmakers Zhang & Knight, creative agency Acne and Dazed.

“Let 2020 be the year of the United Queendom,” says Munroe Bergdorf, an activist, model, and LGBT+ advocate, swathed in royal garb in the film. “Long live our Qweens”.

Using royal photographer Cecil Beaton’s portrait of Princess Margaret as inspiration, the cast of Dazed’s film appear as figures dressed in royal garb in a series of majestic tableaux.

Kate Moross, the illustrator; Crystal Rasmussen, author and drag performer; and Sam Smith address the gender revolution and the need to redefine identity in the light of the singular “they” pronoun being 2019’s word of the year.

Designer Gareth Pugh highlights the move towards marriage equality in Northern Ireland, while popstar Rina Sawayama talks about the protests over LGBT+ inclusive education in Birmingham.

Poet Kai-Isaiah Jamal emphasises the problems with the UK’s Gender Recognition Act, the process by which trans people can change their legal gender that the government has repeatedly promised to reform, saying, “Truth is, I haven’t the energy for another panel to tell me I am not man enough for this world.”

“We came together to develop the concept of deconstruction,” ACNE executive producer Jack Howard explained, “deconstructing traditions, deconstructing the patriarchy, deconstructing queendom.”

The film was shot in a disused warehouse, showing the Qweens one by one before they come together in a final shot to look towards the next decade if queer representation, resistance and rebellion.

“Going forward, we must stand together, strong. The future is ours for the taking,” says Lady Phyll, so-called because as the founder of UK Black Pride, she turned down an MBE on the Queen’s 2016 New Year’s Honours list.

“In really difficult times, culture thrives,” reflects Bergdorf, who has taken more than her fair share of the struggle over the last few years. “It’s our community that makes us strong.”

More: Lady Phyll, munroe bergdorf, Sam Smith

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