Date: November 2017

Rainbow Recycle

Rainbow Recycle
Bramm Lindentree is an artist, writer and performer with a passion for the unusual.

Activists Show & Tell: How to Change the World Panel + Q&A with 78er Julie McCrossin

Activists Show & Tell: How to Change the World Panel + Q&A with 78er Julie McCrossin
Hosted by Julie McCrossin, in conversation with activists Betty Hounslow, Teddy Cook, Sally Rugg and Imam Nur Warsame. In a special panel for the 40th anniversary of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, journalist and 78er Julie McCrossin takes a look at LGBTQI activism in Australia from radical liberation and protest in the 70s to the fights we’re fighting today. Julie will be joined in conversation by a number of activists sharing their stories and photos, talking about the issues that matter the most to them and the ways in which they’re changing and have already changed the political landscape of Australia

Change for All? Feminism and the LGBTIQ Movement

Change for All? Feminism and the LGBTIQ Movement
Moderated by Sarah Maddison, with panelists Robyn Laverack, Nayuka Gorrie, and Anna Hush This panel will explore the role of women and feminist politics in building the LGBTIQ rights movement in Australia today. The discussion will bring together the voices of some very different experiences in these struggles, including Mardi Gras pioneer Robyn Laverack; Kurnai, Gunditjmara, Wiradjuri and Yorta Yorta woman and queer writer Nayuka Gorrie; and young feminist campaigner Anna Hush, together in conversation with University of Melbourne political scientist Sarah Maddison. From the gay liberation movement to the queer politics of today, this panel examines the intersections of feminism, queer, trans*, race, age and Indigenous sovereignty, taking up the most pressing questions of how we can do better as a movement that is committed to justice and equality for all.

Trans Stories - 40 Years

Trans Stories - 40 Years

From struggles and sequins to love and life.

In this unforgettable Queer Thinking co-presentation with Trans Sydney Pride a diverse range of transgender people will share their personal truth and inner world in an evening of storytelling.

With speakers traversing the four decades of Mardi Gras, hear anecdotes from the hilarious to the heartbreaking that explore the community’s history and its unique perception of the world.

Learn about the glamour, the battles, the pain, the resilience, the love. Relate to their aspirations for success, family and belonging and be moved and inspired by their advocacy and ability to stand proud and claim their place in the world.

Trans Stories Speakers include:

Mama Alto, AJ Brown, Karen Chant, Chrissy Doyle, Lisa Freshwater, Peta Friend, Katherine Maver, Kaya Wilson and Colleen Windsor

Directed by Lisa Freshwater

Conceived and Produced by Peta Friend for Trans Sydney Pride

This one-off performance will run for approx. 2 hours 15 mins with an interval.

Meet the storytellers:

Karen Chant

Karen Chant

Karen is a true pioneer and living legend in the history of Sydney drag.  At the very young age of 15 Karen decided she would pursue a feminine lifestyle, being drawn into the glamorous world of fashion and the catwalk. Karen was hired by June Millinery in Sydney to create her style of ladies headdress, and being the first male milliner in Australia drew enormous publicity - from there her star status began. 

In the early 1960s Karen debuted as the compare of the first all-male revue in Australia, The Jewel Box coffee shop in Kings Cross. What followed was an extraordinary career that saw Karen perform at arguably every historical venue of the last century: The Purple Onion 62, Les Girls 63, Ivy’s Birdcage 67 and her own club Karen’s Kastle 68.

Karen was a big star, who throughout the 70s headlined (along with Rose Jackson) the most well-known of gay showrooms Capriccio’s, also known as International Vanities. These excellent production shows are now the source of fond memories for all who visited.

Karen went on to make guest appearances at the Balmain Town Hall hotel and Polly’s Follies at both the Albury Hotel and Stonewall. For the past 40 years Karen has been performing for The Pollys Club, the longest running gay social club in Australia, and now at 86 years old occasionally performs for charity at The Venue in Pattaya, Thailand donating her time for the street kids of Pattaya.

Katherine Maver

Katherine Maver 

Katherine is an experienced Senior Project Manager, who is a member of the Complex Programme Management practice within IBM. She is highly respected within IBM as a person who is driven and can deliver projects without the compromise of quality.

Katherine leads the A/NZ IBM’s Employee Alliance for LGBTI Empowerment, otherwise known as EAGLE. This is a Business Resource Group for LGBTI employees and their allies at IBM.  The objective is to promote a safe and open working environment for our members and all employees, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.  The aim is to foster a strong sense of community within IBM and to facilitate networking, mentoring and ongoing education.

As a Transgender woman, Katherine uses her standing in the corporate world to influence, to effect change and continue the fight of equality in the workplace.

Kaya Wilson

Kaya Wilson

Kaya is both a scientist and a writer, studying the impact of tsunami on Australian coastlines and writing about all things queer and wonderful. He is part English, part African and wholly Australian. Kaya tells stories because that is how we share our humanity and the humanity of trans people is something we can't forget. He is a visible and out trans man who wants to make things better for our community and entertain you along the way.

Colleen Windsor

Colleen Windsor

It seems little known now, that way back in the late 1970s our little part of the world here in Sydney experienced a phenomenon with the existence of a subculture of transgender women in such large numbers that remains unexplainable.

I was an active participant of this subculture and as a Les Girls showgirl I worked hard doing three shows, six nights a week, entertaining locals and tourists. We were seen as freaks on the one hand and as the most beautiful boys in the world on the other. But in Kings Cross, along with the strippers, the callgirls and other associated misfits we were at the heart of Sydney’s then exciting nightlife.

These days as a writer, I tell the stories of Sydney’s LGBTI history, Gay Sydney and my memories of Kings Cross – I love to share the connection of the past and the present.

Peta Friend

Peta Friend

Peta is a trans advocate, public speaker and founder of Trans Sydney Pride (TSP), Sydney’s larges social group for transgender and non-binary people, and it’s associated group Trans Sydney Pride Family, Friends and Allies.

She was born in 1961, raised in Sydney and transitioned male to female in 2000.

Peta has spoken at many corporate events including the Macquarie Bank, Goldman Saks and The Attorney Generals Department and most recently at Sydney’s largest rally for Marriage Equality to an audience of thirty thousand.
 
Trans Sydney Pride has produced two very successful events as part of the Pride Festival; Transitioning and Career Success in 2016 and Trans Stories, A Celebration in 2017.
Peta is a Skin Therapist with a career spanning over 30 years and the owner and operator of Will and Peta Skin Clinic.

Lisa Freashwater and AJ Brown

Lisa Freshwater and AJ Brown

AJ Brown is a proud transman, trans activist, landscape designer and artist. He was born in Derbyshire in the UK in 1967. He’s a qualified horticulturalist, structural landscaper, landscape designer and director of Evolve Garden Concepts.

After medically transitioning FTM in 2015 AJ turned his focus to trans activism and is an admin for the online groups Trans Sydney Pride (TSP), TSP Family, Friends and Allies, Trans Melbourne Pride and Transgender International. He’s spoken in TSP’s Trans Stories and modelled for the Aurora foundations [STYLE] aGender.

Lisa is a theatre director and producer and co-founder of The Theatre Division. Currently TTD are producing the national tour of Miracle City which opened at Sydney Opera House in October 2017 and Thai-riffic! which opened this year and will tour nationally in 2019.  In 2014 TTD produced and Lisa directed the critically acclaimed and award winning production of Ruthless! The Musical at The Seymour Centre.

Lisa and AJ have been together for thirteen years, eleven of those years in a same sex relationship. They have a sixteen-year-old son.

ann marie calilhanna

Chrissy Doyle

Chrissy Doyle is a 34-year-old trans woman who grew up in Wollongong. Chrissy began her transition at 31 and works as a personal assistant for The Theatre Division in Sydney.  She is very family oriented and loves spending time with her friends and lives with her amazing partner Ray. Chrissy has told her story of life and love for Trans Sydney Pride’s Trans Stories on previous occasions - with not a dry eye in the house! 

ann marie calilhanna

Mama Alto

Mama Alto is a gender transcendent diva, cabaret artiste, jazz singer & community activist.

She is a non-binary trans femme person of colour who works with the radical potential of storytelling, strength in softness & power in vulnerability. Fierce, femme & fabulous, she has been lauded as “divine” (Havana Tribune, Cuba), “near flawless” (The Age), and “a knockout” (The Herald Sun). She fascinates audiences with “an idiosyncratic mix of statuesque fragility” (The Music) and is described as “transcendent” (Stage Whispers), “breathtaking” (ArtsHub), “hypnotically beautiful, elegant & mysterious” (Adelaide Advertiser) & “bewitching” (SameSame). Drawing on legacies of vintage torch singers & her own identity as a queer person of colour, Mama Alto’s vocal & visual aesthetic transcend gender, disrupting & discomforting societal constructions of dichotomous boundaries. By embracing perceived difference she reclaims narratives of othering, defies the normative & rejoices in the sublime.  

Queer Refugees: Building the Bridges and Bridging the Gaps

Queer Refugees: Building the Bridges and Bridging the Gaps
Moderated by Tina Dixson, with panelists Roj Amedi, Kathryn Clark, Randa Kattan, and Renee Dixson. With many countries in the world criminalising homosexuality, LGBTIQ people around the world are forced to flee for their lives. The 1951 Refugee Convention enables them to seek asylum when they are facing persecution on the grounds of their sexual orientation or gender identity. However, international protection mechanisms do not guarantee an easy pathway to safety.

The ‘Transgressive’ Body: A Fucking Protest

The ‘Transgressive’ Body: A Fucking Protest
Moderated by Dino Dimitriadis, with panelists Dai Aoki, Daniel Monks, and Zahra Stardust. ‘Transgressive’ sexual bodies are often the target of stigma, discrimination and regulation. Drawing on experiences with disability, HIV-positivity, Sex Work and Queer Porn, the panel explores the protest of fucking and how body- and sex-positivity advance understanding and advocacy in our communities.

Activism and Radicalism from the AIDS Crisis to Today

Activism and Radicalism from the AIDS Crisis to Today
Conversations inspired by the stories told in the film BPM by Robin Campillo Moderated by Nell Schofield, with panelists Phillipe Mangeot, Maxime Forest, Bridget Haire and Lyle Chan, and musical performance by the Acacia Quartet. When the AIDS crisis hit, LGBTQI communities around the world were changed forever. Groups like ActUp! mobilized themselves with radical tactics to fight for our lives against hostile attitudes and governments.

History Walk - CBD Chapels of Lurv

History Walk - CBD Chapels of Lurv
In the spirit of the celebration of the Mardi Gras Season, the Sisters of the Order of Perpetual Indulgence will be undertaking a Living History Walk: this year they will be focusing on the public anonymous sex venues, beats or Chapels of Lurv of the inner East and CBD. The Sisters have been undertaking these walks annually for over 27 years – with each of their walks focusing the Gay, Lesbian and Queer lifestyles in separate geographical areas of Sydney.

SAME SEX SALSA WORKSHOP GLMA

SAME SEX SALSA WORKSHOP GLMA
Free Salsa workshop to celebrate Mardi Gras. Learn some sexy moves for you and your partner on the dance floor – hot and spicy!

SELF DEFENCE WORKSHOP GLMA

SELF DEFENCE  WORKSHOP  GLMA
Free Salsa workshop to celebrate Mardi Gras. Some Streetwise easy moves to keep safe for Mardi Gras partner on the dance floor

Joan

Joan
To celebrate Mardi Gras, esteemed UK Theatre Company Milk Presents bring their award-winning Drag King play JOAN to Sydney for the first time.

Gretel Killeen and the Gretsky's: The Love Love Klub

Gretel Killeen and the Gretsky's: The Love Love Klub
Join us for this ridiculously hilarious and joyful celebration of love and agony expressed through comedy, song, poetry, philosophy and interpretive dance. Featuring Gretel Killeen (one of the nation's big hearts and minds), her band The Gretsky's (what they lack in talent they make up for with enthusiasm) and a smorgasbord of their infamous, brilliant and occasionally untalented friends. Lovebirds, singles & cynics will all love it! Come along, get happy, get groovy.

Shaken Not Stirred

Shaken Not Stirred
For lovers of the greatest James Bond themes, this is a night not to be missed. Glam it up and join Penelope Sai as she delves into the seduction and fun of all things 007.

Sandy Bottoms “Disco On The Green”

Sandy Bottoms “Disco On The Green”
Sandy Bottom presents her 6th Instalment with Disco on The Green, presenting a range of local and interstate drag and transgender illusionist entertainers, International and local Glbti Dj’s and a fun social Mardi Gras Wrap Up Party for all the family. Offering Meat Raffles, Sandys Poof Bowling Competition, Gayest Lawn Bowls and Camp Tunes and Fab Foods, there is something for every age, and every gay in disco heaven.

Out in the Streets: A history of LGBTIQ activism in Sydney

Out in the Streets: A history of LGBTIQ activism in Sydney
Out in the Streets is a panel discussion to analyse Sydney's vibrant history of LGBTIQ activism. Marriage Equality is the most recent issue to galvanise the LGBTIQ and broader communities into action. But ME is part of a much longer history, with victories on the road to equality won through the persistence of our activists and the resilience of our community.

Order of Perpetual Indulgence Annual Zoo Walk

Order of Perpetual Indulgence Annual Zoo Walk
Now in its 25th year, join the Sisters as they visit the world renowned Taronga Park Zoo at Mosman for their Annual Zoo Walk. The journey starts for most by joining the Sisters at Wharf 2, Circular Quay, to catch the ferry across to the zoo, and then catching the cable-car or bus up to the top gate. At the Top Gate we are met and greeted by Zoo Guides and Zoo Keepers, and subject to the availability of suitable animals there is likely to be some Australian fauna that can be gently petted (under supervision, of course), or observed in the arms of their keepers. The Sisters’ Walk around the zoo is accompanied by the knowledgeable Zoo Guides, and we will focus on visiting the Australian contingent … and along the way the Sisters will be able to share with the party, some of the recipes and cooking techniques that were used in the 19th Century … in fact, some of the recipes are still in vogue today. The Sisters may well also take the opportunity to read selected poems to the animals for their edification. The escorted walk will conclude as the Sisters get to the celebrated Bird Show at 12 noon or an alternative special event such as Dingo feeding time. Thereafter, participants are invited to join the Sisters for luncheon, and/or to explore other parts of the zoo at their leisure.

Australian Leatherman and Mr Boot Black Contest Weekend

Australian Leatherman and Mr Boot Black Contest Weekend
Australia's IML brotherhood invite you to the second Australian Leatherman and Mr Bootblack contest. Leathermen and women from around the world come together to witness the selection of the Australian Leatherman 2018 and Mr Bootblack 2018. The competition, features Leathermen and Bootblacks from around the country vying for the coveted national title. With a national panel of judges and emcees, witness for yourself the highs and lows of our contestants journey. Presented in a kink friendly environment with events scheduled over three action packed days.

Mardi Gras at Seymour Centre

Mardi Gras at Seymour Centre
Events at the Seymour Centre

Queer Thinking

Queer Thinking
Leading thinkers and thought provocateurs, both national and international, from all walks of LGBTQI life will take to the stage for two exhilarating days of illuminating ideas, featuring queer writers, community leaders, panel discussions, talks, debate and personal stories. With a focus on social justice, Queer Thinking in 2018 will look back over the 40 years of Mardi Gras, from its early revolutionary beginnings through to its evolution to becoming one of the leading LGBTQI celebrations in the world. Queer Thinking features two days of seven panels with over thirty speakers sharing their thoughts and stories.