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Record numbers celebrate 40 years of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Record numbers celebrate 40 years of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras
March 4, 2018

An estimated 300,000 spectators filled the streets of Sydney last night to watch over 12,000 participants take part in the world’s biggest celebration of the LGBTQI community, the 40th annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade.

Four decades after one night of celebration became a political protest, the Mardi Gras spirit continues. The 2018 Parade, themed ‘40 Years of Evolution’, involved thousands of LGBTQI people and their champions from all across the globe uniting in creative self-expression and a celebration of diversity and equality.

The four hour event featured more than 200 entry floats/groups; 350 motorcycles, 178 vehicles and 15 pushables; and 12,300 participants.

Reflecting on last night’s Parade, Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Chief Executive Terese Casu advised “the participation of every single person in this year’s special anniversary Parade helped produce a dazzling display of self-expression, reflection and celebration. In its fourth decade, this was our most iconic Parade yet and one that will go down in history.

“In total there was a record 200 groups represented in the 2018 Mardi Gras Parade, sharing a stunning array of creative concepts from all walks of LGBTQI life.

“Beyond the glitter, flamboyance and satire, there were so many floats reminding us of the serious issues. Acceptance, inclusivity, diversity, respect.

“Among this year’s many floats were many paying tribute to the original Mardi Gras marchers, our 78ers, and our 40 year anniversary. Indeed over 200 ‘78ers’ from all over Australia made their way to Sydney to lead the Parade train with the First Nations float.

“Marchers from all over Australia were out in force: representing the beaches around Australia with the Surf Life Savers with Pride float, showing the world the Northern Territory’s unique LGBTQI community, and celebrating the LGBTQI activist groups of Tasmania. From a global perspective Sydney’s Indonesian community group Selamat Datang GLBTIQ brought to light the struggle for equality that people in other parts of the world face.”

As the clean-up began on Sydney’s streets, many of the revellers continued to celebrate Mardi Gras at the Party, which took over several venues in Moore Park until 8am.

This year’s Party, Australia’s biggest LGBTQI Party, was headlined by pop superstar and LGBTQI icon Cher and also included performances by Starley and Seann Miley Moore, and sets by international DJs The Black Madonna, Hannah Holland, Kiddy Smile and Shaun J. Wright.

Guests were also treated to sets by local DJ talent Alex Taylor, Annabelle Gaspar, Ben Drayton, Beth Yen, DJ Dan Slater, DJ Dan Murphy, Dom de Sousa, DJ Du Jour, DJ Gemma, GI Jode, James Smithers, Kate Doherty, DJ Kate Monroe, DJ Kitty Glitter, SEZZO SNOT, SIMONA, Stephen Allkins, DJ Sveta, Victoria Anthony, and YO! MAFIA.

The midnight community show featured 40 of Australia’s legendary Drag Queens and Trans Showgirls, along with Mardi Gras legend Bob Downe and 25 dancers from the local community. There were performances across the night from The Huxleys, The Evolutionary Dinner Party, Feralicious, Sheba Williams, and Frankie Says. Guests also showcased their skills and belted out some classic LGBTIQ tunes at the Karaoke Bar.

Images courtesy of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.

28th February 2018 - SPEEDO PARTNERS WITH TEAM SYDNEY TO CELEBRATE EVOLUTION, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

12th February 2018 - CHER TO HEADLINE 40TH ANNIVERSARY MARDI GRAS PARTY 

5th December 2017 - REPORT SUGGESTS SYDNEY’S HORDERN PAVILION SITE SLATED FOR REDEVELOPMENT

15th November 2017 - LIVE PERFORMANCE AUSTRALIA CALLS ON AUSTRALIAN PARLIAMENT TO ACT ON MARRIAGE EQUALITY 

26th October 2017 - QANTAS’ ALAN JOYCE ACKNOWLEDGED FOR BACKING GAY MARRIAGE

30th March 2017 - FREE RAINBOW LACES DISTRIBUTION BOOSTS ONGOING CAMPAIGN FOR INCLUSION IN SPORT ‚Äč 

6th March 2016 - SYDNEY MARDI GRAS PARADE MARKS A MOMENTOUS YEAR FOR LGBTI COMMUNITY

23rd November 2015 - PATA SIGNS ORGANISATIONAL PARTNERSHIP TO SUPPORT GAY AND LESBIAN TOURISM 


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We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

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