Quin: Representation matters. I wish that all these major corporations that are celebrating Pride this month did it year-round. But you know what? It’s pretty awesome that they’re doing it this month, and it does help combat some of the negativity and the struggles we see throughout the rest of the year. Sara and I sort of have a positive push on our social media all the time, and maybe some people find it grating and irritating, but for me, we’ve already read all the negative shit, so maybe they don’t need me to be like, “Look at this horrifying article about suicide and conversation therapy!” We’ve decided as a band that we’re going to amplify positive messages. We’re going to use our two million followers. We’re going to give them art and books and content and movies and things that have positive queer representation, because I want them to know that there is hope and that there are great things out there. When I look at the statistics and I feel like, “Oh, God, it’s getting worse” -- which it is -- I also think to myself, “Well, we’ve got an army of corporations and LGBTQ organizations and incredible allies and LGBTQ people who are stepping up and saying, ‘We see the numbers. We see it changing. We see it getting worse and we’re stepping up.’”
There is also often a fine print on the front of the window displays, that they are donating to these organizations.
Quin: Totally! Look, Tegan and Sara Foundation sponsors an all-ages Pride event in New York City, because every Pride event there is 21+ and it’s hella expensive. We saw the need and we were like, we need to provide a space for youth and for those most marginalized in our community who don’t have the money to go celebrate Pride with the biggest artists on earth charging, like, $75 to see them play. We’re guilty of that, and so we’re trying to pay it forward and give back to the community. Back to AT&T coming on board with LOVELOUD, like, yes there’s corporate dollars, but also, great, there’s corporate dollars! We take some money they have and distribute it to all the small LGBTQ organizations doing incredible work in Utah. It’s a win-win in my opinion.
Are there any plans to expand the LOVELOUD name beyond the festival, like with other programming or events?
Reynolds: Yes, for sure. There are a lot more communities that need it -- the world needs LOVELOUD. But we really wanted to get this right and understand it on a community level and Utah was a place that desperately needed it, so that’s where we started. I grew up Mormon, so it made sense to start there. But there are a lot of kinks to work out along the way, and putting on a festival every year and even understanding how to do that and be as effective as possible is difficult. There’s a lot of things we’ve been learning in these few years, but our absolute goal is to bring it to the nation and hopefully the world.
Finally, Tegan and Sara have been off the road for a few years, so what can we expect from your LOVELOUD performance?
Quin: Oh, my God, it’s a lot of sleepless nights right now. Dan knows this too, but when you come out of hiatus for one show...it’s definitely keeping me up. But we are doing something completely different -- something we’ve never done before. We’re collaborating with an incredible female DJ who’s going to come out on stage with us, and a drummer, and we’re going to do something high-energy and really fun. Lots of different versions of Tegan and Sara fan favorites. Mostly, we’re just going to celebrate and enjoy the day. Last year was one of my favorite days that I can remember in recent times -- it was just such an experience. I can’t wait to be there and be a performer and there’s so many cool bands playing this year.
What about backup dancers?