WATCH: Kylie Minogue joined marchers at this year’s Mardi Gras Parade

Courtney Act Mardi Gras Kylie Minogue

Kylie Minogue has made a surprise appearance at the 41st annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade after weeks of speculation about her plans for this weekend.

The singer drew cheers from the crowd as she joined the parade route dressed in a shimmering golden frock and mingling with Mardi Gras party headliners Courtney Act and Jake Shears, as well as singing a medley of songs with a chorus of drag queens wearing Kylie costumes.

Organisers say more than 12,000 people took part in Saturday night’s parade and around 300,000 spectators had lined the parade route to watch the colourful festivities.

Close to 200 floats make their way down Oxford Street in Sydney – led by the Dykes on Bikes, the First Nations float, and the pioneering 78ers – celebrating a wide variety of cultures and organisations all united under this year’s Mardi Gras theme of “Fearless”.

The parade began with a Welcome to Country and traditional Indigenous smoke ceremony by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island leaders, a first in the 41-year history of the Mardi Gras parade.

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the “Fearless” theme aimed to highlight the “audacious bravery” of the LGBTIQ community and inspire the community to overcome discrimination.

“It encourages us to break down the barriers that still exist. Many LGBTIQ people feel lonely and isolated and Mardi Gras gives you the opportunity to reach out for help, to be fearless,” she said.

SBS livestreamed the parade on Saturday night, and their telecast with commentary from Joel Creasey, Patrick Abboud, Zoë Coombs Marr and Nerelda Jacobs will be screened from 8:35pm on Sunday night (March 3).

Kylie is set to begin the Australian leg of her Golden Tour in Sydney on Tuesday, and speculation of a Mardi Gras appearance intensified when the pop icon revealed on social media she’d flown in early, leaving a conspicuous gap in her schedule.

The singer is playing a single show in Queensland, at Sirromet Wines in Mount Cotton on March 17.


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