Big push to move Mardi Gras Party to Allianz Stadium

Elton John performs at Allianz Stadium in Sydney. Could Mardi Gras Party move there?
Elton John at Allianz Stadium in January 2023. Image: Dick Lyon/Wikimedia Commons

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Party could move to Allianz Stadium under a NSW government bid to clear the way for more concerts in the city each year.

Earlier this month, NSW Premier Chris Minns slammed an existing, years-old cap on Sydney concerts each year. He directing Venues NSW to work on an application to raise it from four concerts a year to 20.

Venues NSW manages Sydney Football Stadium, also known as Allianz Stadium, which can accomodate 55,000 people.

This week, the government agency sent nearby residents letters detailing the proposed changes, published by the Sydney Morning Herald.

The letter explains the proposal to increase the concert cap and increasing rehearsal times.

The letter stresses there are no changes to the current concert curfew of 11pm, with one exception: Mardi Gras.

The proposal includes a one-off exemption to the 11pm curfew to host the late-night Mardi Gras Party, Venues NSW wrote.

Mardi Gras says ‘no plans’ for move next year

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras CEO Albert Kruger said there were no plans to move next year’s after-party to Allianz Stadium.

He told the Herald the measure was based on previous discussions with government. It means that if Mardi Gras organisers wished to relocate the event, they could, he explained.

Recently, the Mardi Gras Party has copped criticism over capacity dramas.

In 2020, Mardi Gras apologised after punters missed headliners due to the Hordern Pavilion reaching capacity.

The venue could only hold 5500 people, but the after-party usually attracts 10,000.

Concert cap ‘puts Beyoncé concert at risk’

Earlier this month, Premier Chris Minns also acknowledged Mardi Gras’ official afterparty in his push for more concerts.

He said the decades-old cap limiting the concerts was also putting a Beyoncé concert in Sydney in jeopardy, among other artists.

“The cap means NSW is missing out on millions of dollars a year in economic activity, and the tourism and jobs it brings with it,” he said.

“We need to utilise our entertainment venues to their fullest potential.”

Earlier this month, Lands, Property and Sport Minister Steve Kamper directed Venues NSW to start the required planning and environmental applications to amend the restrictions.

The agency said in the letter to residents they’ll seek their feedback and work closely with them on the proposal.

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Jordan Hirst
Jordan Hirst

Jordan Hirst is an experienced journalist and content creator with a career spanning over a decade at QNews. Since 2012, the Brisbane local has covered an enormous range of topics and subjects in-depth affecting the LGBTIQA+ community, both in Australia and overseas. Today, the Brisbane-based journalist covers everything from current affairs, politics and health to sport and entertainment.

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