The ABC will broadcast the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade for at least the next three years, including the upcoming WorldPride celebrations.
Mardi Gras confirmed last month they would hold the 2022 Parade inside the Sydney Cricket Ground for the second year due to uncertainty around COVID-19.
Since 2014, SBS has broadcast the Parade but on March 5, 2022 you’ll see the event screened on the ABC.
ABC’s Managing Director David Anderson described the three-year deal as “a homecoming for Mardi Gras.”
“The ABC was the first broadcaster to televise Sydney Mardi Gras in 1994,” he said.
“We’ve waited 28 years for it to return. From 2022 onwards, we’ll provide coverage of Mardi Gras that only the ABC can, without commercial interests.
“It is important that wherever you are in Australia, you have the opportunity to take part in this significant cultural event and can celebrate the diversity that exists in Australian communities.
“For us to be able to reflect Australia’s LGBTQI+ community to themselves and to the whole country is incredibly important.”
Mardi Gras CEO Albert Kruger said they’re thrilled to sign the three-year TV and radio deal with the ABC.
“Our national broadcaster has been a longtime champion of LGBTQI+ communities,” he said.
ABC chair Ita Buttrose said the broadcaster was the “natural home” for the event.
She said the ABC’s decision to first broadcast the parade in 1994 “paved the way for other media to cover the event.”
“Since then the ABC has been proud of its support of the LGBTQI+ community in Australia,” she said.
“Who else but the ABC can do justice to Mardi Gras?”
Mardi Gras hosting WorldPride mega-festival in 2023
The Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade will return to its usual home of Oxford Street in 2023 for its 45th anniversary.
And that year, Sydney and Mardi Gras are hosting the biennial mega-festival WorldPride in February and March 2023.
In 2019, they won their bid to bring it to the Asia Pacific for the first time. The new deal means the ABC will broadcast WorldPride.
The festival will include opening and closing ceremonies, a Bondi Beach party, a human rights conference and a Pride March across Sydney Harbour Bridge.
WorldPride CEO Kate Wickett said the ABC will “amplify our LGBTQI+ culture and community” with their coverage the event.
Watch the ABC’s broadcast of the 1994 Parade below:
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