Shadow Puppets from Layne James and the Bang Gang

Rhinestone Steel is an ever changing, all-ages queer music and arts festival that is held in the early summer. The festival hosts local and nationally recognized musical performers, showcases queer art, and allows queers and allies to come together in a safe-as-possible and fun environment. In an environment where queer voices are seldom heard in mainstream music and arts spaces, Rhinestone Steel is more than just a music festival; it is a celebratory political action creating visibility and space for expression.

Over the years we have showcased a wide variety of music and arts from queer people with very diverse backgrounds, including performance artists, poets, musicians, dancers, and puppeteers. We wants to exhibit queer art by encouraging local artists to collaborate to turn the venue into an art installation. Our hope is that the Pittsburgh queer scene will grow together by seeing and celebrating each other’s talents.

In addition to performance, there is also space where queer folks can share resources: organizations come to “table” with political information, support resources, and opportunities to become involved in many different projects around the city.

Pittsburgh is a city of bridges and we are trying to build more. Beautiful bridges between local and national queer organizations and between people who live in Pittsburgh to inspire a creative, loving and closer community.

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