500,000 take to Sydney streets for this year’s Mardi Gras Parade


Photo: Jeffrey Feng/Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras organisers say an estimated 500,000 spectators lined the streets, rooftops and balconies of Oxford Street to cheer the more than 12,500 marchers taking part in this year’s Mardi Gras parade.

This year’s theme was Fearless, “a poignant acknowledgment of the way LGBTQI people across the globe courageously express who they are.”

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The theme was taken up as a call to action by many of the floats in the Parade, calling on the LGBTQI community to be strong, live brave, be proud and celebrate fearlessly, organisers said.

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras CEO Terese Casu said people from all around Australia had come together “to witness a colourful spectacle of protest and celebration.”

“In total there were 197 groups represented in the 2019 Mardi Gras Parade, sharing a stunning array of creative concepts, with many incorporating the Mardi Gras theme Fearless,” she said.

“After last year’s Mardi Gras Parade celebrated its 40th Anniversary by looking back at our rich history and the pioneers of change that made it all happen, the 2019 Mardi Gras Parade was a moment for LGBTQI people, young and old, to come together and move fearlessly into the future.

“This year we reflected on issues that are still faced by the LGBTQI community.

“Sydney’s Indonesian community group Selamat Datang GLBTIQ brought to light the struggle for equality that people in other parts of the world face.

“Trans Australia Pride marched proudly towards a future in which trans acceptance and equality is a reality for all, while youth support group Twenty10 were a sea of fluorescent colour, a bright and shining hope for the years ahead.”

Casu said Kylie Minogue’s appearance in the parade at Taylor Square, and her special tribute with dozens of Kylie-costumed dancers and drag queens “was a highlight that many will remember.”

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More than 13,000 revellers continued the celebrations at the official Party, which took over several venues in Moore Park until 8am.

Pop star Kim Petras, Jake Shears of Scissor Sisters, Leiomy Maldonado and local legends PNAU, Courtney Act, Paul Capsis, HANDSOME and Briefs headlined the party.

 

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