Parade and party night next Saturday will be huge, but with Main Drag shopping, Queer Thinking and of course the amazing Harbour Party, this coming Saturday is also extravagant.
Sydney Mardi Gras has a super selection of events to choose from on Saturday 25 February – here’s the details.
THE MAIN DRAG
With well-known favourite stores closing, and discount mall-style outlets popping up in their place, there’s been widespread concern about the state of Oxford Street lately. When better than Mardi Gras time to jazz up the famous gay strip?
From 12pm this Saturday 25 February they’ll be a variety of acts and activities in Taylor Square – enjoy free live drag shows courtesy of Midnight Shift and Stonewall, plus Bollywood performances, burlesque dancers, Zumba classes and mFIT cardio demonstrations from City Gym.
Those feeling creative are invited to come dressed as their favourite character from The Wizard of Oz, with celebrity drag queen Maxi Shield hosting a best-dressed competition live on stage.
Further down the strip, Oxford Square will be transformed into a pop-up relaxation garden with free massages, yoga classes by Finding Lotus Yoga and deckchairs, giving crowds the option of escaping the hustle and bustle.
The Main Drag will show visitors and locals everything the iconic street has to offer, encouraging passers-by to stop in for some entertainment, take a moment to unwind, and, of course, shop ’til they drop.
The street’s shop owners have been given colourful rainbow flags to help decorate their windows with prizes for the most show-stopping displays of glitz and glamour. Already we’ll seen some incredible creations.
Get your thinking caps on and enjoy a meeting of minds. This year’s Queer Thinking day of speakers for Mardi Gras at the Seymour Centre packs in several renowned and influential guests.
Queer Thinking explores who we are, why we are and what we do, and aims to be as entertaining as it is stimulating. Audiences will be challenged to think about diversity, the queer experience and putting ourselves in others’ shoes.
Sessions throughout the day will celebrate and discuss queer diversity in the home, in the workforce, in literature, online and respective communities.
Speakers on the day include Professor of Race and Cultural Studies Sara Ahmed, who will appear at Wilful Queers exploring queer history of ‘the will’, while founder and founder and co-facilitator of Queer Muslims in Australia Alyena Mohummadally will talk about how she reconciles her religious identity with her sexual identity.
The event’s sponsor Google will present two sessions on the day, addressing the role of the social web and borderless communication channels in Activism in the Internet Age, and Queer Career will feature leading executives from Australia and around the world reflect on what it means to be a LGBTQI business leader.
Other sessions include a discussion of 30 Years of the Bookshop Darlinghurst, showcasing some of the significant books that The Bookshop Darlinghurst has sold over the past three decades.
Do You See Me? Behind the Mask of the Asian Gay Man will seek to explore the conflicting worlds of being Asian and gay, posing the question “Can sexual and cultural identities co-exist harmoniously?”
And there’ll be plenty more food for thought at Homosexual: Oppression and Liberation, which will see a panel consisting of Dr Sue Wills, Lex Watson and Professor Dennis Altman discuss Altman’s groundbreaking 1971 book – Homosexual: Oppression & Liberation.
THE 2012 HARBOUR PARTY
Harbour 2012 is on Saturday instead of Sunday this year, but it promises to deliver the same unforgettable experience at the Botanical Gardens overlooking the beautiful Sydney Harbour.
The crew promises a party filled with amazing DJ talent, sensational performances, cocktails al fresco, and a fireworks finale that will shower the city skyline with pride.
The line-up includes DJ Lee Dagger (Bimbo Jones), Olivian DJ, Kate Monroe, Troy Cox, Random Soul and Richard Weiss, along with performances by Paulini and more surprises.
And if you want to dance the night away as well as the afternoon and evening, here’s three Harbour Party after-party options!