From The Team |

3 mins

From The Team

Welcome, dear reader, to the October/November edition of GCN, which will provide you with some top reading content and also act as a perfect example of the maxim ‘the only constant in life is change’!

With that in mind, we’re delighted to welcome our amazing new Managing Editor, Michael Brett, who’ll be leading the team into our next chapter. GCN is brimming over with plans to further educate, connect and entertain our beloved community under Michaels’ leadership. Exciting times lie in store! We’re also proud to have the incredible Nicole Lee as our Online Content Creator, so expect to read some fabulous stories on in the months ahead.

Now that we’ve shared our team news, what has this issue of the magazine got in store for you? Lots, is the answer! There’s a simply wonderful interview with the deserves-to-be-iconic Irish activist Michael Barron who has devoted his life to making the country, and now the world, better for the queer community, and in particular queer youth. That’s Michael himself gracing the cover of yours truly in a gorgeous portrait by the super-talented Hazel Coonagh.

In a special preview of an exciting video series GCN will premiere in the weeks ahead, a multitude of LGBTQ+ people share their stories as part of the What It’s Like To Be project. We’re very proud to platform their voices and hope the series leads to more essential conversations that need to be had.

On the culture side of things, comedian, actor and writer, Billy Eichner, talks about his hilarious new film Bros - a milestone for queer cinema, being, surprisingly, the first big studio gay rom-com to hit our cinema screens. The glorious artist collective Adrian+Shane talk about their own creative journey and hint at what to expect from their new exhibition 17 Ways to a Better You, and the Outburst Festival in Belfast give us a sneak peek of what’s in store for lucky attendees seeking the best in queer entertainment.

There’s an eye-opening and engrossing interview with a lesbian couple who share their experiences with BDSM and how it has made their relationship blossom, while in the latest of our series looking back at iconic queer nightspots that provided nights out and safe spaces for LGBTQ+ people across the country, we learn more about Loafers in Cork.

We’re very proud to platform some flat-out fantastic personal essays from various members of our community, including the experiences of a lesbian woman who went through the inhumane Direct Provision system, there’s a poignant and ultimately hopeful story from a writer who discusses the gruelling experience she and her partner went through when going down the route of fertility treatment, and there’s an excellent and much-needed discussion about the fluidity of identity and the pressure to assign yourself a label.

Just in time for Halloween, you can enjoy a colourful piece looking at queer holidaymakers visiting America for the spooky season at a time when LGBTQ+ rights are being rolled back across the USA.

And last, but not in any way least, prepare yourself for a touching look at the Irish Names Quilt in an article which also acts as a love-letter to the very much-missed Mary Shannon, its custodian and a true Irish legend.

As we bring this team letter to a close, we also want to take a moment to say goodbye to a beloved member of the GCN family. Our magazine editor Peter Dunne is moving on to new pastures, with this being his last issue. Peter says a little goodbye at the end of this magazine, so we won’t get out the tissues to wipe away our tears just yet. Take care, Pete, you’ll be missed.

Much love,

Keep up to date across our socials:

Facebook: @gaycommunitynews
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Twitter: @GCNmag
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From The Team
Welcome, dear reader, to the October/November edition of GCN, which will provide you with some top reading content and also act as a perfect example of the maxim ‘the only constant in life is change’!
The National LGBT Federation (NXF) would like to begin our monthly update by paying tribute to recently departed Managing Editor Lisa Connell who has moved on from GCN to pursue new career...
The Outburst Festival
Belfast’s international queer arts festival, returns this year with a jam-packed line-up of gems. Including a very special event in association with yours truly. Read on!
How do you feel?
The above is one question that Beryl Ohas normalised hearing after being granted refugee status in Ireland. The answer disappoints most people because they expect her to be jumping up and down expressing happiness, but unfortunately that’s not the response she can give.
The Ownership Of Words
When Lucia Stein interned with GCN, she learned a lot about the language communities use to identify themselves, as well as those who would choose to weaponise that usage.
Stitching Up The Past
Widely acknowledged to be the world’s largest community project, the Names Quilt serves as a memorial, a reminder, a warning, and a moment of solidarity...
What It’s Like To Be Me...
There’s a brand new multimedia series created by GCN which aims to create visibility and provide a platform for the voices of minorities and the underrepresented in the LGBTQ+ community. What it’s Like to Be will highlight important conversations that need to be had, spoken by the voices of the people directly affected. Alice Linehan interviewed those involved. Here follows just a handful, keep an eye on for the full series
States Of Fear
In 2022, the Halloween industry in the US is expected to bring in 10.6 million dollars. A chunk of that will come from tourists looking to get that uniquely American spooky season experience. But with the continuing rollback of queer rights across the nation, will LGBTQ+ travellers have something to really fear from a place that welcomes their money but not their identities? Peter Dunne braved the fake blood and chainsaws to speak to queer locals for whom the scares won’t end at the stroke of midnight on October 31st
Under Control
About six months ago, following a long shift at work, Joe Drennan arrived at his friend’s student accommodation to find a group rallying around the TV, watching a film. It would soon open his eyes to the world of BDSM
Making It Happen
Michael Barron has had a hugely positive impact on the lives of the queer community and the disenfranchised over the years. He caught up with Leah Downey to discuss his journey and the essential work he does with The Rowan Trust. Portrait by Hazel Coonagh
Billy Eichner is no stranger to success. The New York native has worked hard to build his career in comedy over the last two decades. He has now reached a milestone in queer cinema, writing and starring in the first big studio LGBTQ+ rom-com. Eichner spoke to Elliott Salmon about making his mark on movie history
Creating A Better You
The already iconic two-person collective Adrian+Shane are almost instantly recognisable to lovers of LGBTQ+ art. The duo spoke to Oz Russell about meeting up, making art and what to expect from their new exhibition, 17 Ways to a Better You.
Cork’s Crown Jewel.
Loafers, Ireland’s oldest gay bar, opened its doors to the LGBTQ+ population of Cork City back in 1983, a time when, strictly speaking, it was still illegal to be queer in Ireland. In fact homosexuality would not be decriminalised in the Republic until the passing of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act of 1993—ten years after Loafers staked its claim as one of Cork’s premier LGBTQ+ bars. Ethan Moser looks back at a gem of the scene
Sports & Fitness
The Measure Of Love
When Niamh Nestor and her partner began their fertility journey, their experience was much more difficult than they originally assumed. Their story is sure to be familiar to many.
An Ending
GCN’s family member and Magazine Editor Peter Dunne will wind up his time with the team right as this issue goes to print. Here, he says goodbye
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