All ArticlesEntertainmentEventsFeaturedNews


Local heroes and global DJ talent bring the noise to Manchester Pride’s Big Weekend.

This year’s Gaydio Dance Arena opening party sees seminal London club night Horse Meat Disco go head-to-head with sensational local DJ talent as part of the Karnival Presents Tacet and Friends stage.

Friends and established names on the capital’s clubbing circuit James Hillard, Jim Stanton, Luke Howard and Severino started Horse Meat Disco over a decade ago. These hedonistic Sunday night sessions have instigated a string of successful compilation albums, with the team now working on their first debut artist album due for release later this year.

Horse Meat Disco are joined by Karnival resident DJ Tacet, Will Tramp from legendary local club night Homoelectric, Francis Woof of Manchester DJ collective That Amazing Thing! and F__KDUST, a collaboration between Fiona Daniel, drummer for electro-pop band The Whip, and acclaimed singer and musician Bev ‘Veba’ Green.

Veba is best known for her work with Groove Armada, and Manchester producers Fingathing, Only Child and Rae and Christian. Together with Fiona, F__KDUST bring their thrilling mix of deep house music and spine-tingling vocals to the Gaydio Dance Arena.

Former Hacienda DJ Graeme Park has been confirmed for the exciting Saturday night Manchester Pride All-Stars stage, alongside up-and-coming and established DJ talent from across the globe.  

Graeme Park spent eight years as one of the Hacienda’s resident DJ’s, moving from Friday’s groundbreaking ‘Nude’ nights with M People’s Mike Pickering to partnering Tom Wainwright on Saturday. Now a renowned producer and broadcaster, including a weekly show for Gaydio, Graeme Park played the Hacienda’s 30th Anniversary celebrations last year, and continues to be an ambassador for the pioneering nightclub.  

He is joined by headliner Kim Fai from Toolroom Records, Stuart Robinson of Paradise Factory and Federation, Phoebe D’Abo, global resident of international music and lifestyle brand Hed Kandi, and fellow Gaydio DJ Kriss Herbert.  

Stuart Robinson plays the Gaydio Dance Arena before his DJ set at this year’s hotly-anticipated Paradise Factory 20th Anniversary party, which sold out within 2 hours of tickets going on sale.

On Sunday night Manchester promoters Drop The Mustard take the Gaydio Dance Arena underground.

Drop The Mustard have built a reputation as one of Manchester’s finest regular house and techno events across the city. Now settled at recently opened venue Gorilla, the team behind Drop The Mustard have brought the likes of Gui Boratto, Azari & III and many more to Manchester, curated an annual stage at the Gottwood Festival, and been invited to host one of their biggest events to date at The Warehouse Project during Easter this year, headlined by hit recording artist SBTRKT.

Alex Blaxx, Sam Graham, Oli Hackett and Ed Norris are joined on Sunday’s Drop The Mustard Presents stage by fellow Warehouse Project collaborator Lauren Lo Sung, DJ and promoter of North West underground house night LOLiFE, and Ibiza Rocks resident Doorly. Often described as “an old school block party DJ using new school technology”, the Mad Decent, Ministry of Sound and Toolroom Records turntablist and producer’s genre-defying mix of riffs, loops, beats and bass looks set to shake the Gaydio Dance Arena to its very foundations. 

Manchester multimedia production outfit Meat Cassette will help transform the Gaydio Dance Arena into an immersive audiovisual experience, with stunning visual displays across all three nights.  

Chief Executive of Manchester Pride, John Stewart said “The Gaydio Dance Arena is a brilliant addition to the Manchester Pride Big Weekend festival, encompassing the very best in dance music from Manchester and beyond.”

“It’s fantastic that we can welcome these world class DJ’s to the UK’s leading Pride event to help us raise funds in support of local LGBT charities and projects.” Toby Whitehouse, Station Director of Gaydio added “We are obsessive about playing the very best dance music on Gaydio, so we are beyond excited to be presenting this fantastic new addition to Manchester Pride. It’s going be a great place to party over the Big Weekend, so make sure you join us in the Gaydio Dance Arena and help us blow the roof off!”

The Gaydio Dance Arena is open 19:00-00:00 Friday 23 August and 18:30-00:00 Saturday 24 August and Sunday 25 August.  Advance Big Weekend tickets are still available at a price of £21 from