Pride flash mob takes over Sergels torg

Four young women kicked off Stockholm's Pride Festival with a bang on Monday by organising a flash mob that included The Local's Emy Gelb.

Pride flash mob takes over Sergels torg
POW! Squad

Stockholm’s Pride Festival, the largest in northern Europe, officially kicked off on Monday with a series of official events, parties and speakers.

In the midst of all this, four young women belonging to the group POW! Squad, which describes itself as “Your queer feminist superhero in everyday life,” kicked off their own Pride party in Sergels Torg.

The women organized a 15-minute-long dancing flash mob in the plaza to celebrate the start of Pride and the LGBT presence in the city.

“We love to dance and this is how we want to start a revolution,” Lisa, one of the POW! organisers, told The Local. “Just grab speakers, friends and do it.”

At 3pm, the women did exactly that. As The Pointer Sisters’ “I’m So Excited” blared from the speakers, the small group of dancers let loose. Within a few minutes, some onlookers joined in while others stopped what they were doing to gawk, take pictures and snap in tune.

Flash mob activism is becoming an international trend. It is an accessible and simple way to take over a public space and make a statement by turning normal routines and traditional social codes completely upside down through social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook and blogs.

“It was a success,” beamed Lisa.

The girls were proud of the results. Considerably more people showed up then they had initially expected and everyone enjoyed the music and dancing.

Pride runs until Sunday. The POW! Squad will organise two more flash mobs during Pride. For more information about when and where, please visit their website.

Check out The Local’s flash mob gallery here.

Emy Gelb

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Stockholm Pride is a little different this year: here’s what you need to know 

This week marks the beginning of Pride festivities in the Swedish capital. The tickets sold out immediately, for the partly in-person, partly digital events. 

Pride parade 2019
There won't be a Pride parade like the one in 2019 on the streets of Stockholm this year. Photo: Stina Stjernkvist/TT

You might have noticed rainbow flags popping up on major buildings in Stockholm, and on buses and trams. Sweden has more Pride festivals per capita than any other country and is the largest Pride celebration in the Nordic region, but the Stockholm event is by far the biggest.  

The Pride Parade, which usually attracts around 50,000 participants in a normal year, will be broadcast digitally from Södra Teatern on August 7th on Stockholm Pride’s website and social media. The two-hour broadcast will be led by tenor and debater Rickard Söderberg.

The two major venues of the festival are Pride House, located this year at the Clarion Hotel Stockholm at Skanstull in Södermalm, and Pride Stage, which is at Södra Teatern near Slussen.

“We are super happy with the layout and think it feels good for us as an organisation to slowly return to normal. There are so many who have longed for it,” chairperson of Stockholm Pride, Vix Herjeryd, told the Dagens Nyheter newspaper.

Tickets are required for all indoor events at Södra Teatern to limit the number of people indoors according to pandemic restrictions. But the entire stage programme will also be streamed on a big screen open air on Mosebacketerassen, which doesn’t require a ticket.  

You can read more about this year’s Pride programme on the Stockholm Pride website (in Swedish).