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Freddie Mercury and Sylvester memorials to be unveiled in Chicago – here’s what you need to know

The queer music icons are gone but not forgotten.

By Jamie Tabberer

Freddie Mercury and Sylvester’s legacies are to be immortalised in bronze this weekend, as memorials of the music icons are unveiled in Chicago.

The bronze memorial plaques are to be inducted onto The Legacy Walk Historic Landmark Outdoor LGBTQ Museum this Sunday (11 October).

For tickets to the online induction event Legacy Walk Dedication Phase VIII, click here.

The Legacy Walk is a mile-long outdoor public installation celebrating LGBTQ contributions to world history and culture which attracts over 1.5 million visitors a year.

Plaque dedicated to Alan Turing at Chicago’s The Legacy Walk Historic Landmark Outdoor LGBTQ Museum

The dedication of the new memorials to these music icons takes place from 3pm-5pm (or 9pm-11pm if watching from the UK).

It’ll feature historians, performers and fans, including contributions from Broadway sensation Anthony Wayne of Mighty Real: The Sylvester Musical fame, as well as Dr. Joshua Gamson, San Francisco-based biographer of The Fabulous Sylvester: The Legend, The Myusic, The 70s in San Francisco.

Lesley-Ann Jones, the London-based author of Bohemian Rhapsody: The Definitive Biography of Freddie Mercury will also be appearing, as will Legacy Project co-founder Victor Salvo.

Fans can expect video clip montages, tribute performances, celebrity guests and a live reveal from the site of the Legacy Walk.

Follow along with the hashtags #lgbt_legacy, #FreddieMercury, #Sylvester, #LGBTQHistory, #LGBTQEvent, #Music, #MusicHistory.

Mercury, who was gay, was the lead singer of Queen. The band are known for hits like ‘The Show Must Go On’, and ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.

The band were the subject of 2018 jukebox musical Bohemian Rhapsody. Rami Malek won the Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of Mercury.

The rock icon died of AIDS-related bronchial pneumonia on 21 November 24 1991, at age 45.

Sylvester, who identified as gay, is meanwhile known for the hits ‘You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)’ and ‘Don’t Stop’. He was one of the first topline performers in the U.S. to be proudly gender-nonconforming.

He died of AIDS-related complications in 1988 at the age of 42.

The Legacy Project incorporates The Legacy Walk, traveling installation The Legacy Wall, the Legacy Project Education Initiative teaching tools, and the Legacy LIVE series of events and programs.

The organisation as a whole works to counter the damaging effects that have resulted from the redaction of LGBT people from shared human history, focusing on the loss of self-esteem endured by LGBTQ youth who experience bullying both in school and at home.

For more information, click here.