Equinox

Equinox Explores The LGBT Alphabet In Colorful Pride-Themed Short Film

The fitness chain is highlighting its commitment to the queer community with a choreographed take on the acronym.

Equinox has teamed up with ad agency Wieden+Kennedy and The Center for its first-ever Pride-themed video—and it’s a good one.

Directed by Jordan Bahat, LGBTQAlphabet: Six Letters Will Never Be Enough is a colorful five-minute short film that explores the LGBT acronym. With choreography by Andrew Winghart, dancers demonstrate terms like “drag,” “femme,” “kink,” “masc” and “vogue” in a powerful celebration of identity, the body, and queerness.
 

Since January, Equinox has been using the tagline “Commit to Something,” which the gym’s executive creative director, Liz Nolan, explains was part of the inspiration for the Pride-themed campaign.

“We’ve spent the past few years pushing deeper into the notion that ’what you commit to is who you are,’ and this film is a through-line for us, empowering viewers to find their own ways of expressing all the color, variation, and realness inherent in one’s identity,” Nolan said in a statement. “Equinox has always empowered the community to be proud and unapologetic about who they are, but this year, we wanted to make an even more meaningful contribution to a cultural dialogue that is being written before our eyes.”

Although Equinox has offered Pride initiatives in the past, this is the gym’s first high-profile initiative that actively includes members of the community.

Equinox Pride Campaign
Equinox

“When you exist in your own world for too long you forget reality, and being able to work with partners like The Center is really important,” Nolan told Fast Company. “We didn’t want it to be us dictating meaning around what these letters stood for. ‘LGBTQA’ exists in the world and we all know what [the letters] mean. And then you have these other letters that we decided to give an interpretation of based on the insights of real people and what it means to them–this is not Equinox saying this is what this means.”

Nolan also makes note of Equinox’s diversity of its employee and membership base.

Equinox Pride Campaign
Equinox

“Knowing that our community and our membership base at Equinox is so diverse, we feel like this is an area where we do have some credibility,” Nolan said, “and we would never delve into a subject that we didn’t feel that we had authenticity and credibility in. We went into this saying there is an [existing] idea of pride: It’s rainbows; it’s electronic dance music; it’s the parade and that’s all fantastic. But there’s also a more serious, thoughtful side of it too. What this film does is provoke a new conversation around pride and specifically a brand’s right to speak about pride by deepening this understanding of what LGBTQA means. Where brands get into trouble is when they try to cling onto trends, news stories, and events that they have no right to comment on. If a company wants to be brave, wants to make a statement, the critical thing to ask is ‘What do I have the right to comment on?’ and ‘How does that connect back to the core of who we are?’”

Equinox is also hosting Powered by Pride events in Los Angeles, Chicago, D.C., Toronto, New York, and San Francisco throughout June.

Trish Bendix is a Los Angeles-based writer.
@trishbendix