Organisers expect more than 300,000 spectators from all over the world will pack Sydney’s Oxford Street for tonight’s Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade, and broadcaster SBS is again streaming it live online.
You can watch the parade live tonight from 6:30pm Queensland time on SBS On Demand, or on the YouTube stream that can also be found below. The YouTube link can be streamed unrestricted anywhere in the world.
Then on Sunday night, hosts Faustina Agolley, Patrick Abboud, Em Rusciano and Joel Creasey will present the full Mardi Gras telecast on SBS from 8:30pm.
Parade participants have been hard at work putting the finishing touches on the 184 fabulous floats set to appear in this year’s parade.
Members of Queensland’s LGBTI-inclusive water polo team the Brisbane Tritons have travelled down to Sydney to take part for the first time in their very own float.
Eighty-five members of the Northern Territory’s LGBTI community and allies have travelled to Sydney to participate in the NT’s Mardi Gras float, including model Casey Conway and actress Miranda Tapsell. Thirty Sistergirls from the remote Tiwi Islands who crowdfunded their travel costs will attend the parade for the first time to celebrate and showcase indigenous culture.
Footy legend Ian Roberts, who in 1994 became the first pro footballer in any code worldwide to come out as gay while he was still playing, told Fairfax Media he’ll be leading the NRL’s parade float, after he says he was disappointingly snubbed last year.
“Freedom! The Float” will pay tribute to the late gay icon George Michael with over 90 dancers and a recreation of Sydney’s “Saint George” mural by artist Scott Marsh.
“George was obviously a trailblazer for our community and his death over Christmas was shocking,” organiser James Brechney told Mashable.
“We knew that float applications had closed by then so felt we had to change our concept to make sure at least one float honoured the life and music of George.”