Start planning your trip now, because next year’s Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras festival lineup has been unveiled.
Having celebrated their 40th anniversary this year, Mardi Gras says that the 2019 festival theme “Fearless” honours the LGBTIQ activism of the past, as well as a call to action to march fearlessly into the future.
The festival will kick off on February 15 and run for two weeks through to March 3, culminating with the annual parade and official Mardi Gras Party.
Before then, Mardi Gras will welcome revellers from all over the country to over 100 community events, dance parties, theatre, music and family-friendly fun.
“Being fearless is more than making a lot of noise, it’s also about acknowledging a person’s own vulnerability, and being able to express who they are, even if it’s not bold,” Mardi Gras CEO Terese Casu said.
“This year we bring together over 400 artists, creatives and thought leaders from across the world to join in a truly global discussion of diversity, social justice, human rights and equality.
“We invite everyone to join Mardi Gras this season to celebrate diversity and creativity, and to champion the fearless voices within our community.”
Creative Director Greg Clarke said for next year’s festival the Seymour Centre southwest of the Sydney CBD will be transformed into “Mardi Gras Central”, a hub of queer performing arts.
Over 12 nights leading up to the Parade, the centre’s theatres, foyers and courtyard will be transformed to provide a welcoming space to celebrate and explore diverse queer identities.
“In 2019 we shine the spotlight brightly on what’s happening in our world today and in the future, as we celebrate our fearless trailblazers,” he said.
“Our diverse and inclusive program is an exploration of sexuality, gender, body image, power, fearlessness, vulnerability, celebration and desire.”
Earlier this year, gay icon Cher helped celebrate the festival’s 40th anniversary but there’s no word yet on a headliner for next year’s Mardi Gras party.
Kylie Minogue, who last headlined the event in 2012, is touring Australia next March and last week didn’t rule out a Mardi Gras gig.
“I’d hate to say I’m doing something when I’m not but honestly nothing is planned right now. We’ll see,” she told News Corp.
Seven Mardi Gras 2019 highlights
Cult cabaret hooligans and mischief-makers Briefs present Club Briefs, a wild romp of disco dancing, circus, variety, and burlesque. Expect a pumping soundtrack of favourite dance floor hits and ridiculous performances from the Briefs boys, plus a cavalcade of hand-selected guest cabaret and circus artists.
A delicious new interactive cabaret banquet, Cake Daddy goes into one gorgeous queer man’s experience of fatness, laying bare the fortitude and fabulosity required for him to live in an image obsessed world.
The Sissy Ball, Australia’s biggest vogue ball, returns after last year’s sold-out debut with more attitude than ever. Style and precision once again collide on the runway in a celebration of self-expression and identity. Inspired by NYC’s iconic vogue ballroom scene, entrants will take centre stage as they battle for the judges’ attention.
The Rise and Fall of St George brings together two of Australia’s leading queer artists, pop icon Paul Mac and playwright Lachlan Philpott, for a bold new work. The work uses the vandalising of Scott Marsh’s St George mural in Sydney’s Inner West, during the Marriage Equality campaign, to explore the life of George Michael through the eyes of the local LGBTQI community.
Koori Gras, produced by Moogahlin Performing Arts, is back for another fabulous series of creative cultural arts events featuring local, interstate and international First Nations queer artists, thinkers and communities.
The Moors is a hyper-theatrical and kinky homage to the Brontës, exploring female power and what it is to write your own story.
The Queer Thinking program of talks brings together trailblazers, provocateurs and thought leaders to share their stories and discuss a diverse range of topics including the Safe Schools program, the death of the gay bar, what it means to be non-binary, LGBTIQ poverty and more.
Tickets to the Mardi Gras 2019 events are on sale now and you can explore the entire program at the Mardi Gras website here.