Matt Knife celebrates WorldPride by honoring those who sacrificed for our freedom

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“Acceptance Matters” is a series of interviews with locals during WorldPride month in New York City

Matt Knife (he/they) is a costume designer, painter, baker, and international burlesque performer. Matt is the producer of Homo Erectus Boylesque and Sparkle for SAGE.  He also co-produces Sharp Objects Burlesque.

Matt was photographed and interviewed by Ames Beckerman at Stonewall Inn during New York City World Pride

Your outfit is amazing!

I got the idea for the pants from an Amanda Lear video. I also wanted to honor the goddess Oya, rainbow warrior. She protects LGBTQ people, so I wanted to thank her. The costume is for a burlesque act to “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,” a fan dance. In my mind, Oya is Lucy and she is looking down and smiling at us all as we celebrate WorldPride 50. Love is limitless and Nice is the New Fierce!

Why is it important to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall?

It’s important because honoring our elders, and those who made our freedom possible, is important. These are the people who removed the boulders out of our path to equality. As the producer of Homoerectus Boylesque for the past seven years, I always try to remember the sacrifices of those who came before and create a space where other people can be themselves in the spirit of Stonewall.

How are you planning to celebrate Pride this year?

I am celebrating Pride this year by trying to spread as much positivity as I can. I’m doing a “30 days of Pride 50” series on my fine art Instagram. On June 30th I am producing a variety show at SAGE, an LGBTQ senior center after the parade festivities. I love spending the parade day at SAGE. It’s the place to be.

Photos and interview by Ames Beckerman

Acceptance Matters presented by Mastercard