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 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 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 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.
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 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 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.
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!
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.
A dynamic group exhibition that examines identity, sexuality, gender and reputation and challenges what those issues mean in Australia after the postal vote and its recent outcomes. Award winning Sydney based artist Guy James Whitworth presents current works selected from his favourite queer artists based all around Australia, an event which he describes as ‘less of a passing on of the torch, but more of a sharing of the talking stick. With so many artists referencing inspiration from the same events and cultural reference points, it’s amazing to see so many different styles and statements.’ Multi media artists such as Dan Gladden, Michael Willard, Andrew Batt-Rowden and Dim Fim (whose works are all featured above) head a stellar line up, in this not to be missed exhibition. The M2 Gallery in Surry hills will host a week long festival of events such artists talks and evenings of performance art, with dates to be announced closer to the opening night.
Watch this space…
Pixel Party is putting the gay in gaming! Sydney Gaymers takes over Valve Bar for a night of multiplayer console action, gaming themed drag shows and fun dance beats. Hardcore or casual, come along for a chance to win fabulous loot in our prize raffle or just dance and game the night away!
The Pollys Club was formed in 1964 and is the longest running LGBTIQ social club in Australia. We hold dances throughout the year which provide an alternative social scene to the traditional bar and club environment. Our dances provide a safe and friendly environment for the LGBTIQ community, supporters and friends to gather and enjoy an evening of dancing and entertainment and at the same time raise funds for our grants program. Over our long history, The Pollys Club have donated over $350,000. towards many charities and organisations through our Annual Grants Program.
Come and join in the fun at our 2018 February dance – “Two Of Hearts”
One of the distressing consequences of the marriage equality survey was the reminder that some people view queer sexuality and family life as incommensurable. Yet the marriage debate also prompted the documentation and dissemination of highly moving stories of queer belonging within Australian families. Associate Professor Christy Newman from the UNSW Centre for Social Research in Health (CSHR) will review a number of qualitative research studies conducted at CSRH in which LGBTQ+ participants provided rich accounts of what family means to them and how they have overcome continuing prejudices to forge a sense of resilience and belonging in the context of family life.
Supported by Darlinghurst Theatre Company.
In November 1992, the Australian government overturned a longstanding ban on gays, lesbians and bisexuals serving in the Australian Defence Force. Transgender service would continue to be banned until September 2010. Yet, LGBTI people were serving in the military long before these milestones, with a range of experiences.
To commemorate 25 years since lifting the LGB ban, this exhibition showcases the history of LGBTI military service in Australia since World War II. The exhibition brings together photographs, objects, documents and the life stories of current and former service personnel to explore how LGBTI Defence members navigated their lives in the Royal Australian Navy, Australian Army, and Royal Australian Air Force. The exhibition includes tales of lesbian subcultures, witch-hunts targeting homosexuals for expulsion, kamp men in Papua New Guinea, participation in Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, and the changing Defence approaches to LGBTI service.
This exhibition derives from a larger research project on the history of LGBTI military service and is being co-sponsored by the Australian Lesbian and GayArchives and Sydney Pride History Group.
Mary Kiani presents T Dance. Celebrate the music of the past - Remember the days when we loved the nightlife and got to boogie?” Mary Kiani presents “T Dance” so lets play that funky music again and everybody dance! Young hearts will run free as we take you back to the days when the disco divas ruled the dance floor. Let’s groove and freak out under the glitter ball at home terrace. Decadence delivered to you in the heart of the famous Darling Harbour. As we turn back the clock jump in my Accidental-Transcendental-Fuel-injected "TIME MACHINE" and prepare to dance yourself dizzy! DJ's DAN DAN - MIKE KELLY & JAKE KILBY KEEPING THE DANCE FLOOR BUSY! Playing DANCEFLOOR CLASSICS
MAKE UP ARTISTS ON SITE (ADULT FACE PAINTING LOL)
LIVE SHOWS/DIVAS/DRAG & SURPRISE GUESTS & SO MUCH MORE. ESPRSSO MARTINIS & LONG ISLAND ICE T'S ONLY $10 FOR THE FIRST 2 HOURS X
PLEASE NOTE - ENTER UP THE ESCALATORS IN THE MIDDLE OF COCKLE BAY...BEHIND THE IRON FLAMINGOS WATER FEATURE AND WALK AROUND.
REMEMBER TO BRING I.D. NO MATTER HOW OLD YOU ARE LOL
Go west this Mardi Gras with Sydney’s favourite LGBTQI storytelling night. Join host Maeve Marsden and an eclectic line up of stars and strangers at Riverside Theatres, Parramatta for a night of our city’s queerstories, unexpected tales of lives well lived and battles fought, pride, prejudice, love and humour.
The LGBTQI community has been sharing stories for centuries, creating our own histories, disrupting and reinventing conventional ideas about narrative, family and community.
In its usual home in Redfern, Queerstories has been selling out every month for over a year, bringing storytellers from all walks of life to the stage. Funny, moving, surprising and engaging, the stories from Queerstories are also available on the podcast.
This event is Auslan interpreted. This Western Sydney special event is presented by Riverside Theatres.
Relax at a luscious summer picnic in Enmore Park. Bring your kids, your dogs, your friends and a picnic lunch as we lounge about in the summer sun. Acoustic musicians, laid back DJs and chillout tunes will serenade us as we live our best damn lives. We’ll have a Mocktail bar and platters of fresh fruit – all for free. All LGBTIQ women are welcome. Don’t forget to bring your swimmers for the nearby Annette Kellerman Aquatic Centre.
This event is part of ACON’s #TalkTouchTest breast cancer campaign, and we would love to see you there.
Click RSVP for more details.
The Queer Tarot Project is a multi-media exhibition, telling stories of the queer community through Tarot. When rejected by traditional religion, the queer community has often turned to Tarot for guidance and or spiritual belonging. This project aims to de-mystify and bring Tarot back to its story telling roots, and remove the white, patriarchal and religious overtones of the traditional Tarot decks. A Queer Tarot deck, for and by the Queer community, representing our gender and sexual identities; telling our stories through Tarot archetypes.
Exhibition includes large prints of the Tarot cards and visual projection of the Queer stories.
Celebrate Bear Culture during Mardi Gras.
Sydney’s pop-up Bear Bar is back bigger than ever to celebrate 40 years of Mardi Gras.
Located on the ground floor of the Burdekin Hotel, at the start of Oxford Street, doors swing open on February 23rd for another action packed 9 days of fun events.
Showcasing the cream of the international bear scene, this year’s entertainment line-up includes comedian Dean Arcuri from Melbourne, US DJ Corey Craig from NYC and Sydney’s Colin Gaff who has headlined at bear parties across the globe including the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Party.
As well as the pub style nights, there will be art showcasing local bear artists and some special events geared to visitors to Sydney, including an Australian wine tasting run by United Cellars and a walking tour exploring Sydney’s secret gay history.
Spread over two levels of the Burdekin Hotel, Bear Bar will be the focal point of the Australian Bear Community during the Mardi Gras celebrations.
Festivities wrap up with a massive Mardi Gars Parade Party on March 3rd, overlooking Oxford Street with amazing views of the parade.
Celebrate Mardi Gras 40th, and sail the Harbour Pink to celebrate all that is Sydney! Visitors and locals alike rate this as one of Sydney's top experiences - join us and find out why.
The party starts at the Opera House Jetty, then as the hot summer sun slowly melts over the Harbour Bridge, enjoy 4 full hours of delectable canapes (included in your ticket price), icy cold drinks served from our cash only bar (including one free on arrival) and our awesome party tunes and chilled beats spun live by our Planetdwellers DJ.
Friendly, welcoming and warm, just like our city, our exclusive floating palace, The Bella Vista, is one of the premier ships of Sydney. An Ideal location from where you can view the breathtaking sights you’ve always wanted to see. Join us in showcasing the most delightful parts of Sydney and of course, the jewel in her crown, Sydney Harbour itself!
Mingle with our hosts MC James 'Breko' Brechney and DJ Amanda Louise, get your party selfies posted, and don’t forget the obligatory kiss as we cruise under the Harbour Bridge. The Famous Sydney skyline will come alive with light, as the party continues all the way back to the Opera House.
Don’t miss out on getting one of the hottest tickets on the Mardi Gras Calendar - book now!
To celebrate Mardi Gras, performance art perverts - Rule 34 - are throwing a party! CRISCO DISCO offers up a late night dirty discotheque of dancing and disco mischief, dotted with hot, hilarious and perverse performances that celebrate the diversity of sexuality and gender. Mix, mingle, dance, party, party and blot out everything but the disco beat at CRISCO DISCO. All genders and sexualities welcome. Dress to impress (yourself). R18.
The Little Black Dress Run is Sydney Frontrunners' annual fundraiser for Twenty10. This year it's the Little Black Dress or Tux run in black or white for a wedding theme. The event is back at its traditional home, Centennial Park.
A family friendly event for everyone. Frock up in your best LBD or T or any old haute couture to help a great cause. We're running in a park so wear your bling bling sneakers.
Laugh so much you won’t even know you are exercising! Who will win prizes and wear the sash for most glamorous runner and fundraiser?
Sydney Femme Guild is delighted to produce 40 Years of Femme, a celebration of 4 decades of Femme history in Sydney during the 2018 Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras festival.
A fundraiser for Sydney Femme Guild and the inaugural event signalling a new era of growth for the Guild, the night will be an exploration and celebration of Femme identity - raw, sassy, strong, proud, dangerous.
The night will be set to explore the many faceted aspects of femme identity, lifestyle, desire, pleasure, and beauty from within. Featured Femme performers will grace the stage with their own stories of Femme experience in the form of burlesque, spoken word, artistic expression and demonstrations.
In addition, we will be hosting an exhibition of Femme as Fuck images - telling a story of pride and history from the many diverse Femmes in our beautiful LGBTQI community over the past 40 years!
We are proud to support equality with our equali-TEA! Our signature high tea will be covered with rainbow colours and extra sprinkles to celebrate the 2018 Sydney Mardi Gras Festival. Come enjoy this most English of traditions in the understated elegance and warm ambience of Sir Stamford at Circular Quay, the perfect setting for an afternoon of indulgence. 3-tier high tea stand includes savoury canapes and finger sandwiches, decadent sweets, fluffy scones, coffee or tea and a glass of champagne.
Kerrie Lowe Gallery has PRIDE in presenting our 23rd Mardi Gras exhibition in 2018.
Members of the "Little Sisters of the Nimble Finger" artist collective work their magic in clay, wood, paint, feathers and glitter to celebrate that first march down Oxford Street in 1978!
We celebrate the amazing artistic contributions of past Parade organisers, MCs, marchers, dancers, costume and wig makers and Queer "floatilla" decorators! We delight in celebrating the past and present LGBQTI communities and the sense of pride and joy it brings when we gather together at the exhibition opening with our resident Mother Abyss to sing ‘Ave Mardi Gras’ to the accompaniment of the piano accordion. We're still reeling in our stilletoes from our 2017 exhibition where we celebrated Marriage Equality (pre-plebiscite) with Ceramic Same-Sex Wedding Cakes: one of which was presented to Peter and Bon, that amazing couple of 50 years, lifelong activists, awarded the Order of Australia and famous for that first boy on boy kiss on ABC TV.
Forty Years of Fabulous Frocks believes that Gay Rights are Human Rights and there can never be too many colours in a rainbow! Keep the Date and celebrate with us in King Street (that thinks it is Queen Street) in Newtown at the Kerrie Lowe Gallery
The View UpStairs pulls you inside the UpStairs Lounge, a vibrant 70s gay bar in New Orleans. The forgotten bar regulars come to life when a young fashion designer from 2017 buys the now abandoned space and is transported back in time. He gets to know the joys and struggles of this community and in turn learns about his place in the world. From the opening piano chords of this Off-Broadway sensation, the five-piece band and cast of ten blast into the glam rock world of the 1970s. In our ever-changing world, this show looks at the then and now to explore our ideas of love, regret, defiance and resilience. The music will give you goosebumps, the story will make you both laugh and cry. See why Ru Paul said the show was “FABULOUS! It was fantastic.”
“Vibrant and jubilant. The show swells with heart, a moving homage to LGBT culture, past and present.” - Entertainment Weekly
'Telling Tales' Offical Book Launch at East Sydney Community and Arts Centre is now SOLD OUT
Telling Tales - 40 Fabulous Years of Floats, Fun, Fantasy and Fortitude of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras
Sydney portrait photographer, Richard Hedger, has shot 40 original portraits of members of the LGBTI+ community. In parallel, Richard has documented each individual’s personal story to tell of the ever-evolving role the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras has played in their life.
Portrayed in Richard’s book are the faces of the familiar, the famous and not so famous, of sung and unsung heroes both local and international. They are the images of people who have been brought together to share their experiences, thoughts, reflections, memories and insights with regard to the impact and relevance to them of the SGLMG. They consist of political activists, actors, academics, athletes, authors, carers, chefs, comics, designers, directors, DJs, editors, entertainers, entrepreneurs, historians, journalists, lawyers, performers, playwrights, photographers, politicians, professionals, retailers and stylists.
Each of them has contributed to the life blood of the city in which they live and love. They speak of what the SGLMG means to them and how they see its role as a powerful past, present and future influence on the LGBTI+ community and beyond.
Faustina Agolley | Mark Alsop | Rafae lBonachela | Steph Sands | Fran Bowron | Jayson Brunsdon | Aaron Elias Brunsdon | Tom Campbell | Morgan Carpenter | Casey Conway | Teddy Cook | Andrew Creagh | Joel Creasey | Brendan de la Hay | Peter de Waal | Melinda Dimitriades | Robert Tait | Angelo Doulgeris | Robert French | Jackie Braw | Vicki Harding | Brenna Harding | Alex Greenwich | Victor Hoeld | C.Moore Hardy | Manda Hatter | Nic Holas | Bettina Holmes | Michael Kirby | Marc Kuzma aka Claire de Lune | Jane Marsden | Les McDonald | Jenni Millbank | Jonathon "J.Mo' Moran | Tommy Murphy | Justin Koonin | Joy Ng | NORRIE | Ian Roberts | Sally Rugg | Teresa Savage | Vanessa Wagner aka Tobin Saunders | Colleen Windsor | Garry Wotherspoon | Annie Wright | Danling Xiao | Kevin 'Kabi' Yarwood
Bringing together two fabulous LGBTQI choirs, Sydney Gay & Lesbian Choir and Wellington Glamaphones, ‘Close Harmony’ is a celebration of the power of voice to promote acceptance, inclusion, harmony and community between people and nations.
Featuring music from Pet Shop Boys, Queen, Whitney Houston, Crowded House, Missy Higgins and a host of favourites from Australia, New Zealand and around the world. You’ll be uplifted, moved, and taken on a musical adventure through harmony and we might even get you singing along!
The Glamaphones are Wellington’s LGBTQI community choir. Like SGLC they are non-auditioned and place great emphasis on participation, inclusiveness and building community.
Come and celebrate Mardi Gras’ 40th Anniversary with us! Book here.
Dance the night away and enjoy the rich diversity of queer performances by leading local, national and international guests, plus the Black Nulla workshop participants and your favourite drag artists and DJs.
Koori Gras present a community forum with dinner and drinks for local and interstate guests to discuss relevant issues and challenges for First Peoples’ communities.
An international panel of influential thinkers and artists come together to discuss queer performance from First Peoples’ perspectives. Guest speakers include Associate Professor of Creative Industries at University of the Sunshine Coast, Dr Sandy O’Sullivan, Creative Director of Yirramboi First Nations Art Festival, Jacob Boehme, Cherish Blood (Black Foot, Alberta Canada), and performance artist Brian Fuata.
SISSY BALL is SOLD OUT! Thanks to everyone who booked! See you at Carriageworks on Saturday 24 February!
PRESENTED BY SYDNEY GAY AND LESBIAN MARDI GRAS AND RED BULL MUSIC.
For one night only, clubbers will be transported to a dancefloor born from the living history of New York’s underground Ballroom scene.
Expressions of identity become the focal point as bodies collide in the ultimate Vogue throwdown of style, precision, and attitude in a showcase set to transfix.
In true Vogue style, extravagance on the runway will be met with a Ballroom soundtrack that will weave through disco, house, bounce, pop, performance and much more.
Curated by local interdisciplinary artist and club icon Bhenji Ra, this premier event at Carriageworks is sure to be a festival highlight.
HOUSE OF ENVY (NZ)
SISSY BALL HEAD JUDGE:
SISSY BALL MC:
ELECTRIC FIELDS (AU)
QUAY DASH (USA)
SISSY BALL 2018
Registration for competitors is now open for Sissy Ball 2018, presented by Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and Red Bull Music! Please email your name, number and the category/categories you wish to enter to email@example.com. Due to capacity, we have a limit on how many walkers we can allow for each category. Please register by Wednesday 21st February to avoid disappointment.
1. FEMALE FIGURE PERFORMANCE – SCHOOL GIRL TWIST
‘I’m pretty, I’m cute, I’m popular to boot!’ Schools back in, ladies! So you better bring it like the Craft! Points for those who bring it with a prop, every schoolgirl needs some books and a late pass! Don’t forget your high school sweetheart!
2. FACE – EVENING GLAM - OTA
She’s beat for the goddess! Flawless on every angle! Catch these cheekbones! Catch this HIGHLIGHT! Don’t let my wing cut you! This face is an evening beat set to last you the entire night, so give us glam!
3. HAND PERFORMANCE – OTA
Bring whatever look you want, just make sure your hands stand out! The hands say everything so tell us your story and don’t you dare start cat walking!
4. RUNWAY – NATIONAL COSTUME -OTA
Its time to call on the ancestors to get your 10s! Let us know where your from, what island, clan or nation is yours! Bring it with a traditional look or a hybrid twist! Whatever best describes your bloodline! It’s a moment to show pride and strength, so head up and walk! Australian flags are an automatic chop!!
5. SEX SIREN – BODY ON SHOW - OTA
I may be bad but I’m perfectly good with it! Body-ody-ody, give us BODY! It’s time to define what sexy is for you! Tonight it’s all about your body, your rules! So bring it in any form, flesh tone or size and let us know why you are the Sissy Ball Sex Siren! Points for those who bring it in latex look!
6. VOGUE FEM – SHINE SUPREME - OTA
Mirror mirror on the wall, who’s the cuntiest of them all? To win grand prize and reign supreme you need a look that’s shines and elements all so clean! Bring it with a metallic effect, gold, silver, sequin! Its time to put on a show so blind these hoes with your reflection and slay your elements to win! Lets GO!
SOLD OUT! Thank you to everyone who booked!
PRESNTED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH MEDIBANK
SUPPORTED BY IVFAUSTRALIA
For one day of the year Luna Park will be rainbow for this fun and fabulous party for kids and their LGBTQI families and friends. All the fun of the fair - featuring unlimited rides all day, and the wildest kid’s dance party ever in the stunning Crystal Palace.
Mardi Gras legend Kate Monroe and Oxford Street favourite Victoria Anthony will be spinning tracks at the kids’ disco, while drag queens Coco Jumbo and Hannah Conda will delight everyone from young to old with their fabulous lip-syncing performances.
This will be a special fun-filled treat for kids of all ages and an awesome action-packed day for the whole family.
Queer Art After Hours returns after last year’s hugely successful inaugural event. Once again, the Art Gallery of New South Wales will go queer, with an explosion of queer art around every corner.
QUEER ART AFTER HOURS 2018 FEATURES:
GANG OF SHE
BRENDAN DE LA HAY
DJ YUNG BRUJO
On the main stage, MCs Fancy Piece host a line-up of Sydney’s cutting-edge queer musicians, DJs and performers: Marcus Whale, Rainbow Chan, Brendan de la Hay, Sexy Galexy, DJ Yung Brujo, DJ Ayebatonye, and performance collective Gang of She.
Elsewhere in the Gallery, take a tongue-in-cheek art tour with Verushka Darling, a life drawing class with dominatrix Mistress Tokyo as your model, or have a profound coffee cup reading with artist Nicole Barakat. Watch out for The Huxleys, whose iridescent and glamourous creations might pop out from any corner!
And don’t miss the chance to see the work of one of the most important figures in queer art history in the acclaimed exhibition Robert Mapplethorpe: the perfect medium. Emerging during the wave of gay activism and pride that also birthed the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, Mapplethorpe chronicled his deep involvement in New York’s gay scene and immortalised the idols of the 1970s and 1980s, including lifelong muse Patti Smith. Whether he was photographing a figure, a fetish or a flower, Mapplethorpe’s unflinching quest for beauty has an enduring political and artistic resonance.
Check out the full info on the performers and the Mapplethorpe exhibition at the Art Gallery of NSW site here.
Happy Mardi Gras! The Rainbow Flag Raising Ceremony hosted by Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore at Sydney Town Hall is the first official welcoming event of the festival each year.
The rainbow flag originated in San Francisco about 30 years ago and was designed by artist Gilbert Baker for the Californian city's Gay and Lesbian Freedom Day Parade. Since then it has become a worldwide emblem of gay pride and gay-friendly areas. The red in the flag symbolises life, while orange signifies healing, yellow is for sunlight, green represents nature, blue stands for harmony and violet signifies spirit.
City of Sydney is proud to show its support for its many LGBTQI residents, workers and visitors. As a government partner of Sydney's Mardi Gras Festival, the City will fly the rainbow flag above Sydney Town Hall throughout the 2018 Festival from Friday 16 February until Sunday 4 March.
The National Art School is proud to be an exhibition partner of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras in 2018.
The signature event for the 40th anniversary celebrations, the Museum of Love & Protest looks back across four amazing decades and presents an immersive exhibition of original costumes, photographs and rarely-seen film and video footage, iconic posters, storytelling, music and artefacts.
In conjunction with the exhibition the National Art School have created a range of workshops where you can come together as a family to learn new skills and techniques. Enjoy experimental drawing and ceramics for Rainbow Families of all ages!
We have these amazing workshops on offer:
Workshop A: Ceramic treasures with Elizabeth Hogan
Session 1: 10am–12.30 pm
$20 per parent, $10 per child.
This workshop will allow you to experiment with ceramic hand building techniques to develop your own projects inspired by the Museum of Love and Protest. Discover how to join clay pieces, use slab or coil methods, and make design decisions about size and placement. Embellish your collection of objects with different marks, stamps and jewels, and decorate your pieces with a range of underglaze colours.
This workshop is for families with children aged 6 and over. All materials are included.
Workshop B: Doodling with a difference with Todd Fuller
Session 2: 1.30–4 pm
$20 per parent, $10 per child.
Join National Art School Alumni Todd Fuller for an experimental drawing workshop. Try new techniques for mark-making using a variety of materials while learning about observation. Whether you are a daily drawer or a first timer, this workshop will have something for you.
This workshop is for families with children aged 6 and over. All materials are included.
From romance to comedies, documentaries to dramas, and everything in between, Queer Screen delivers a huge 25th Mardi Gras Film Festival with an exciting array of diverse new films and classics. Celebrating the massive achievement of reaching 25 years, Queer Screen is very proud to continue showcasing queer stories on the big screen.
The 2018 festival will feature a raft of Australian and Sydney premieres from all corners of the globe. Highlights include the hotly anticipated Beach Rats, a multi-award winning film that the Hollywood Reporter called “Dark, dreamy and entirely engrossing”, and Signature Move, a comedic and heartfelt look at the complexities of love in its many forms as a Pakistani, Muslim lawyer begins a new romance with a confident and sexy Mexican-American.
After premiering at Cannes, the arty and quiet They comes to the Mardi Gras Film Festival. Following two years of medication and therapy, 14 year old J has to make the decision whether or not to transition.
One of the many documentary highlights arrives to us from Japan, diving into the world of the “Urisen”, young guys who have sex with men in Boys For Sale. Insightful and candid, with superb use of animation, it’s one film not to miss.
Delving into our past we will showcase a number of retrospectives and new films that investigate the history of the LGBTQI community including a celebration of the remarkable strength of the 78ers, with a screening of the digitally restored 1980 Australian documentary Witches, Faggots, Dykes and Poofters. The teaser films listed above and more will be on sale from November 8 ahead of the launch of the full festival program on January 10.
PRESENTED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ANZ
Our communities shine in the sun at Fair Day, Mardi Gras’ free family-friendly carnival of rainbow festivities, featuring a plethora of activities for the young and old, the tame and the bold!
Every year, a melting pot of 70,000 smiling faces gather together in the park to celebrate not only the beginning of Mardi Gras, but also the power and beauty of diversity.
With over 250 stalls, Fair Day will spread out through the entire Park and features the Sports Village, Doggywood, the ANZ Main stage and the new Tropicana Bar featuring DJs Beth Yen and GI Jode.
Stalls that highlight the amazing diversity of the LGBTQI community include the 78ers, Queer Screen, Sydney Gay & Lesbian Choir, Dykes on Bikes, Gender Centre, Rainbow Families, Wett Ones Swimming Club, Sydney Roller Derby, Glitoris, Harbour City Bears, the Sydney Femme Guild and the Australian Gay and Lesbian Archives.
There is always something for everyone at Fair Day, even our fur babies are a part of the action. Bring your most fabulous dog down to Fair Day to strut their stuff at our world-famous Doggywood competition. Find all the details here!
The ANZ Main Stage morning program will feature community performances from the NSW Police Band and the Swing Out Sydney dancers and the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Choir to start the day off. The official ceremonies start at midday hosted by 78er and broadcaster Julie McCrossin.
Mardi Gras legends Bob Downe and Cindy Pastel then take over proceedings as they host the start of an amazing early afternoon program of cabaret including performances by Shauna Jensen, Mama Alto, Greg Gould, Bogan Villea and Miss First Nations winner Josie Baker. Jordan Raskopolous then takes over the MC duties for a late afternoon, all women line-up of live music from Kira Puru and Asta. Two of Sydney’s iconic DJs Sveta and Kate Monroe will then get everyone up and dancing from the Main Stage from 5:30pm until close at 8pm.
Whoever you are, Fair Day is the must-do event of the year. See you there.
OPEN EVERY DAY
Friday 16 February – Sunday 4 March 2018
Sunday – Thursday 11am - 5pm
Friday & Saturday 11am - 10pm (6pm Saturday 3 March)
Our signature event for the 40th anniversary celebrations, the Museum of Love & Protest looks back across four amazing decades and presents an immersive exhibition of original costumes, photographs, rarely-seen film and video footage, iconic posters, storytelling, music and artefacts. Presented in association with the National Art School (NAS), the Museum celebrates 40 years of love, protest, diversity, acceptance, humour, pride, family, passion and creativity.
The Museum’s theatrical design combines visual spectacle and moments of intimacy for visitors to discover the extraordinary stories, artists, communities and images of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. Featuring interactive elements, the Museum invites visitors to contribute their own memories and stories of Mardi Gras for others to share.
Curated by Susan Charlton, the Museum’s theatrical design by Anna Tregloan combines visual spectacle and moments of intimacy for visitors to discover the extraordinary stories, artists, communities and images of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.
Participating photographers include William Yang, C.Moore Hardy, Mazz Image, Ann-Marie Calilhanna and Markham Lane. 1978 photographs include images by Sally Colechin, Geoff Friend and Branco Gaica. Commissioned Artists include Deborah Kelly, Gareth Ernst, Rene Rivas and Lewis Oswald. Plus original artworks by David McDiarmid.
Costumes by Brenton Heath-Kerr, Ron Muncaster and Pip Playford all feature in the exhibition, on loan from the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, as well as costumes worn by Miss Ellaneous, Pauline Pantsdown, Bob Downe, Vanessa Wagner, Joyce Maynge, Peta Friend, AJ Brown, Ted Cook, Pisa Tufuga, and wigs by Maude Boate.
As a special treat, on Friday and Saturday evenings at 6pm, the Museum of Love & Protest really comes alive as fabulous Mardi Gras identities entertain you with their unique spin on Mardi Gras history.
Museum of Love & Protest
National Art School, cnr Forbes & Burton streets, Darlinghurst
Friday 16 February – Sunday 4 March 2018
Sunday – Thursday 11am - 5pm
Friday & Saturday 11am - 10pm (6pm Saturday 3 March)
Mardi Gras volunteers will be on-hand helping visitors navigate the exhibition.
Mardi Gras Bar of Love & Protest at NAS
Each Friday and Saturday night:
(16, 17, 23, 24 February and 2 March), 5:30–10pm
Special Parade Day Bar:
Saturday 3 March, 12–6:00pm
Join us at the Bar for the Museum of Love & Protest to celebrate all that is Mardi Gras. Open for each Friday and Saturday night during the exhibition, the Bar is the perfect place to amplify the Museum of Love & Protest experience. Each night features a different era from Sydney’s queer dance floors, including classics such as Richard Weiss with Tudorstuart Friday 16 February, Heaps Gay Saturday 17 February and House of Mince Saturday 24 February. Save the dates now!
Family Workshops at NAS
Saturday 17 February
Kids $10/Parents $20
In conjunction with the exhibition the National Art School have created a range of workshops where you can come together as a family to learn new skills and techniques. Enjoy experimental drawing, costume-making and ceramics for Rainbow Families of all ages! There are three amazing workshops to choose between. Experimental drawing, costume-making and ceramics workshops for rainbow families! For families with children aged 6 and over.
Sessions: 9.30 am–12.30pm and 1.30–4.30pm
Cost per session: parents $20 each, children $10 each
Bookings: 02 9339 8751; Alana.Ambados@nas.edu.au
A series of creative development workshops for First Peoples queer performers, facilitated by Black Foot (Alberta Canada), performance artist Cherish Blood and local guest artists. Workshop participants will be given the opportunity to perform as part of the Black Nulla Cabaret; a First Peoples’ queer performance event with local, national and international guest artists.
PRESENTED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ABSOLUT VODKA
Take your spot and enjoy an unparallelled view of the Parade in our family-friendly area. There’s a choice of either seated or standing access, each with exclusive access to bars, great food stalls, live screens, bathrooms and delightful hosts Portia Turbo and Andrew Mercardo who’ll give you an outrageous running commentary as the Parade rolls past.
Take the hassle out of Mardi Gras and join us at Sideshow… you’ll be glad you did!
SIDESHOW TICKETS ARE NOW SOLD OUT. Thank you to everyone who booked - see you there on Saturday 3 March!
PLEASE NOTE: Only official ticket outlets and links announced and provided here on mardigras.org.au are authorised to sell tickets. Sites such as Viagogo and Ticketmaster Resale are NOT authorised to sell Mardi Gras tickets.
PRESENTED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ANZ
Mardi Gras' Diamond Club is now SOLD OUT - thank you to everyone who booked and we'll see you there on Saturday 3 March!
Treat yourself, you deserve it. Upgrade your Parade experience at Diamond Club, our exclusive cocktail event in the heart of Taylor Square.
New multi-tiered standing areas will ensure you are heads above the crowd and don't miss a moment, as you mingle at the private bar, gourmet food trucks, or dance to our party-starting DJs.
No bustling crowds, our Diamond Club is better than ever so you can enjoy the stunning Parade in style.
Diamond Club is an over 18s venue.
PLEASE NOTE: Only official ticket outlets and links announced and provided here on mardigras.org.au are authorised to sell tickets. Sites such as Viagogo and Ticketmaster Resale are NOT authorised to sell Mardi Gras tickets.
IGNITE recreates your favourite dance floor anthems with a full orchestra, live singers & electronic musicians.
Those tracks that you’ve thrown your hands in the air to since the Mardi Gras party began. Sia, Whitney Houston, Massive Attack, Madonna, Kylie & Chicane. House, trance and pop anthems as you’ve never heard them before!
This euphoric audio-visual spectacular is on for one night only at the Enmore Theatre.
Courtney Act, Kyle Sandilands, Conchita Wurst and The Veronica’s are just some of the names nominated for Australia’s biggest awards celebrating the LGBTI community and their allies.
The Australian LGBTI Awards is a chance to say thank you to individuals and to celebrate the diverse community that we have in Australia.
Planetdwellers LGBT+ sought after tour and events are back in 2018 and bigger than ever for the 40th!
Our Marquee Event, is your Sunset Cruise on Sydney Harbour!
Flirt with your MC Extraordinaire as we glide past all the postcard moments you know and love. Enjoy the DJ’s chilled tunes and raise a glass to the most heartstopping sunset you'll ever see!
Leave the big city and join us on one of our Iconic Blue Mountains nature adventures where you can get up close and personal with our cuddly and friendly Koalas, Kangaroos, Dingoes, Tassie Devils - the whole Aussie Noah's Ark! Be awed by the oldest mountain range in the world, and enjoy the historic Paragon Cafe for a fantastic lunch, ending with an exclusive visit to their chocolate factory - free samples guaranteed!
There are endless things to do from our Sydney Gay Village walking tours, Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, visit backstage at the Opera House and all done with our signature Planetdwellers friendliness and Aussie smiles.
Enjoy Gourmet food and wines with breathtaking backdrops on our Hunter Valley Winery or South Coast beach day tours.
Only Planetdwellers has been giving you these amazing experiences over the past decade!
Come meet the team in our new store on Oxford street.
Darlinghurst and Oxford St has forever been an iconic stomping ground for artists, queers, bohemians, and outcasts, whose influences delightfully combine to form this unique cultural hub. From the iconic gay bars, to live music venues and fiercely independent retail, artistic expression has always underpinned the Darlinghurst community, making it an unconventional and nonjudgmental space for everyone and anyone. Join us Saturday the 24th of February as we celebrate the Pink Mile with a collection of events put on by the local business and entertainment community. 2017’s highlights were live Shibari window displays, DJs performing on the street, burlesque dancers in display windows & drag cover bands, so you get the idea :)
There’ll be a string of free events within venues and the strip will be transformed to highlight the unique character of the spectacular Darlinghurst community. The event will be covered by local media partners at GAY RADIO & BBR, who will be also banging out tunes live on air from Taylor and Oxford Squares. All proceeds from the event will be donated to Twenty10 inc GLCS NSW, who provide social and mental health support, counselling and housing for Sydney’s LGBTIQA+ youth.
Full a full list of events and times visit www.oxtravaganza.com.au closer to the date. Photo by Robert Knapman
Queerly Beloved, we are gathered here today in celebration of our divine love. Gender transcendent diva, jazz singer and cabaret artiste Mama Alto leads you over the rainbow to empowerment, empathy and ecstasy. Mama’s national tour of fierce queer affirmation proudly comes out at the 40th anniversary of Mardi Gras, before touring across the country: love is love is love.
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).
Each edition of “Mama Alto: Queerly Beloved” will feature special local guest artists. “Queerly Beloved” aims to tour across as much of regional Australia as possible in the coming year.
Come and join the award winning event that welcomes everyone. Walk or run the 2km, 4km or 6km course around the beautiful Sydney Park. Wear a colour from the rainbow (prizes for best fancy dress) .. but be warned we have our infamous drag queens who have water pistols and aren’t afraid to use them! To help you through the course we have our International DJ SVETA pumping out her amazing beats.
A fun day out for all the family for such a current cause for our community. All proceeds go to the hard working, policy changing Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby.
RUN FOR LOVE!
GRRR! Harbour city bears celebrates its 22nd year of incorporation with its festival the runs alongside Mardi Gras Bear Essentials 22 - just like the bingo call two little ducks 22 - WET. WET is a celebration of events for the hairy, larger man and their friends and admirers themed all around water. With a whirlwind program of 15+ events, there is something for everybody - and we mean everybody. We welcome all to come and party with the big guys - just like our bodies, we party large.
All our regular events like Underbear and Wet Furr are there, PLUS new events to get your heart pumping and hirsute bodies moist like a visit to Wet and Wild, a naughty night after at Wild and Wet and a reworked Friday evening event Bear Pit. You can buy tickets individually or as a pack, which gets you extras and member rates for the duration of the Mardi Gras season. Harbour City Bears and its members wish all a safe, but eventful, festival of gayety. WOOF!
Presented by Lander & Rogers Lawyers and the SGLBA
Over the last 40 years, the LGBTI community has achieved a great deal. However, most would agree there is still much to be done.
Please join us for this special event, in partnership with Lander & Rogers Lawyers, as we reflect on our past 40 years history in the context of the Sydney LGBTI community, and immerse ourselves in our Rainbow Reflections.
Join panellists from such fields as business, media, the law, policing, politics, 78-er’s, and religion as we discuss the major hurdles we’ve overcome, and then consider the future, to see how far we must go for equality in the broader community.
Discounted pricing is available for students.
UNFORTUNATELY THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELLED.
Day Session: Ballroom Competition doors open 10.30am; first event 11am- 5pm
Evening Session: EDA Gala Ball, Buffet Dinner, Live Music, Social Dancing, Floorshows 6pm- 11pm
Equality Dance Australia Festival offers a day session of Ballroom competition for All and an evening of wild excess at the Gala Ball.
The Ballroom and Latin Dance Festival showcases Same Sex Dance teams competing in full equality with mainstream opposite sex dancers as well as competing for the Mardi Gras Same Sex Dance Championships; and a Social competition for all levels of dancer. We embrace diversity and gender equity in dance sport.
The Gala Ball celebrates 40 years of Mardi Gras with a Buffet Dinner, Live Music, Floor Shows and Social Dancing and featuring a special Tribute to the 78-ers.
We offer a safe, friendly, inclusive environment where the LGBTQI+ community is encouraged to join in the competition and the evening festivities to highlight our dancing and partying skills.
APOLOGIES - EVENT CANCELLED
PROUDLY IN LOVE is Australia's first same sex wedding festival and expo that celebrates love, bringing together the finest and most sought-after wedding suppliers, unique venues, hotels and destinations along with the best entertainment, design, living and luxury travel. The inaugural event will be held at the iconic Fox Studios on Sunday, 25 February 2018. Across 150 stands, as part of the 2018 Mardi Gras Festival’s 40th Anniversary, PROUDLY IN LOVE will curate an expo that will inspire, influence and motivate you and the LGBTQI community to celebrate your love, and plan your wedding at your own dedicated event, so come and get LovedUp! www.proudlyinlove.com.au
Boomalli Aboriginal Artist Co-operative Presents: "Luscious All Sorts - LOVE WON" for our Mardi Gras Exhibition.
Showcasing works from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander LGBTQI Artists from across Australia.
Boomalli provides a safe space for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders LGBTQI Artists, to exhibit and express their sexual orientation as well as representing their communities through Art.
Join us in Celebrating being lush, fabulous and unique for Boomalli’s Mardi Gras Exhibition “Luscious All Sorts”.
Opening Night: Friday 23rd February from 6-8pm
Special Guest: Casey Conway, Former NRL player and Indigenous Model.
Performances on opening night.
This exhibition continues until 1st April 2018
For more information:
Boomalli Aboriginal Artist Co-operative
55-59 Flood St, Leichhardt NSW 2040
Phone: 02 9560 2541