For the sixth annual installment of Miami Beach Gay Pride, the honor of Grand Marshal has been bestowed upon two extraordinary members of the entertainment industry. After selling 100 million albums worldwide, singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur Gloria Estefan will be joined by the acclaimed American film and television producer, director and choreographer Kenny Ortega, announced Joel Stedman, Chairman of the Pride Board. The Miami Beach Gay Pride parade and festival will take place Sunday, April 13, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. along Ocean Drive between 5th and 15th Streets.
Estefan will lead the parade by riding in a vintage Rolls Royce convertible waving to an anticipated 80,000 fans and supporters who are expected at this year?s parade and festival. The seven-time Grammy Award winner and most successful crossover performer in Latin music history to date is expected to gather a record number of revelers along legendary Ocean Drive, given her local credentials, undeniable charisma and international celebrity.
?There is nothing more Miami than Gloria. She is an intrinsic part of this city?s cultural identity,? said Stedman. ?Not only is she one of the most beloved and successful symbols of the vibrant and diverse South Florida community, but also she has proven to be committed to several charitable initiatives as well as a champion for the LGBT community.?
Joining Estefan as a Grand Marshal will be Ortega, the renowned artist who has choreographed Madonna, Elton John and Rod Stewart. One of the first entertainment personalities in America to ?come out,? Ortega has been the recipient of three Emmy Awards and a Director?s Guild of America Award among countless other accolades. Ortega was Michael Jackson?s director and creative partner for both the ?Dangerous? and ?HIStory? World Tours and also directed the King of Pop?s post-mortem documentary ?Michael Jackson?s This is It.?
?We are thrilled to acknowledge Kenny’s unforgettable moments of joy and sheer entertainment he has provided throughout his career? said Stedman. ?Numerous generations were influenced by Kenny whether by his Cher choreographies, his collaboration with Gene Kelly for ?Xanadu?, his memorable ?Dirty Dancing? moves or his involvement in Disney?s ?High School Musical? movies, there is no age range left uninspired by his work.?
Since its inception six years ago, Miami Beach Gay Pride has grown from a neighborhood event to an event on the global stage with A-list performers. Attendance has grown as well. An estimated 15,000 spectators turned out for the first Pride parade in 2009 and an estimated 80,000 attended the 2013 event which attracted not only South Floridians, but also visitors from throughout the world. In addition to Parade spectators, last April?s event included 66 parade entries and 1,200 participants. The Pride Festival which followed featured 125 LGBT-friendly vendors and businesses, plus refreshments, two stages of entertainment, a family-friendly play area and fireworks.
The mission of Miami Beach Gay Pride is to bring together members and allies of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in celebration of the unique spirit and culture of the LGBT community. The all-volunteer Pride board produces safe, quality, mass-appeal events that are open to the entire community, including the Parade, Festival and allied Miami Beach Gay Pride sanctioned events. Miami Beach Gay Pride is produced with the support of the Miami Beach Visitors and Convention Authority. For more information, visit www.miamibeachgaypride.com.