The main Sydney Mardi Gras parade and concert took place yesterday. Because of Covid-19, this year’s festivities were smaller than usual, but because Australia has got such a successful handle on its pandemic, a real-life event was still able to go ahead.
Rather than take place on the streets of Sydney, this year’s Mardi Gras was a ticketed event in the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).
A stadium crowd of 36,000 spectators cheered on as 5,000 marchers, from over 120 parade entries. Broadcaster PBS transmitted the festival live, allowing many others to watch from home. This year’s theme was ‘RISE’ – something the whole world eagerly wishes to do as it fights to beat the pandemic.
“This year’s Mardi Gras was a once in a lifetime experience,” said Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras CEO Albert Kruger in a press statement afterward.
“With a reworked COVID-Safe format, our iconic Parade definitely looked different to how it has in the past, but even in this new setup, Mardi Gras continues to be a celebration of who we are and what we’ve achieved, as well as a moment for us to advocate for the change we need to see in the future.”
“We look forward to returning to our home on Oxford Street as soon as we can, but if the last 12 months has taught us anything it’s that our community are resilient. We have faced many challenges throughout history and we have always found a way to celebrate, to express ourselves and have our voices heard. Last night was proof of this.”
Acts that entertained the crowd included electronic duo Electric Fields, ARIA Award-winning art-pop songwriter Montaigne, with UK singer Rita Ora closing the evening.
Check out more images below.