MELT Festival Brisbane 2018 Programme

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'Close Encounters' 'Close Encounters' Image © John Tsiavis

MELT Festival is returning for the fourth year in a row to Brisbane Powerhouse.

Brisbane’s biggest celebration of equality, diversity and LGBTQI+ culture sashays back to the city, promising an unforgettable line-up of more than 20 productions and events across 11 nights of revelry, kick-starting in mid-May to coincide with International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia.

“MELT is an annual celebration of Queensland’s vibrant queer community, providing an opportunity for our LGBTIQ+ friends and allies to come together for two weeks of revelry,” Festival Director James Lees says.

“In a climate of renewed optimism and positivity for LGBTIQ+ rights and outward support for the community, we are privileged and excited to present our biggest and most ambitious programme to date.”

The 2018 programme features an eclectic range of international artists, home-grown heroes and MELT Festival favourites, spanning diverse genres including comedy, dance, circus, burlesque, visual arts and more.

Programme highlights include ‘Coupling’, ‘Close Encounters’ by BRIEFS, MELT Beauty Pageant, Gayming Night and Tragic Trivia.

Closing the festival in glittering fashion is The Bowery Haus: Closing Party, a costume party celebrating one of Australia’s most legendary queer icons, Leigh Bowery. Come dressed as your interpretation of Leigh for a costume dance party featuring some of Brisbane’s best DJs.

MELT Programme 2018

IDAHOT Day Ceremony
A community celebration in support of the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biophobia (IDAHOT Day) including special guest speakers, a flag ceremony and the lighting of the building.
A provocative, fresh, and utterly honest contemporary pop rock LGBTIQ+ musical following a group of boarding school students grappling with their sexuality.
Camerata - Queensland’s Chamber Orchestra and special guests reclaim pop classics for LGBTIQ+ audiences that will make even a love cynic tingle.
Briefs: Close Encounters
The world’s hottest all-male boylesque stars return with an epic show of galactic glamour, astro-athleticism and interstellar aerials.
Club Briefs
Join the Briefs boys and their favourite freaky friends in a show of incredible circus, burlesque, music, performance and mayhem.
Power and identity come face-to-face with contemporary ballet and live music in this intimate and personal work.
Beauty Pageant
MELT’s showstopper event returns to crown this year’s most gorgeous drag queen, drag king or trans beauty with an all-star judging panel, a special secret music performance and hosted by the fabulous Tina Bikki.
Resident Alien
Legendary author Quentin Crisp opens the door to his famously filthy New York apartment for an unforgettable heart to heart about life as only he knows it.
Like Mariah
The spirit of Mariah Carey is made known & manifested by local camp cabaret sensation Josh Daveta.
Hooking Up
An improvised show using real life stories that play with the awkwardness, vulnerability and fun of having sex with strangers.
YES! Brisbane Pride Choir: 20 years on stage
Celebrating the choir’s 20th anniversary and the historic ‘YES’ vote, enjoy an uplifting evening of songs and stories.
The Measure of a Man
A gripping show that stares directly into the heart of one man’s sexual anxieties and draws out stories shrouded in years of embarrassment and shame.
Cassandra and the Boy Doll
Cassandra is a woman. She always has been, but her whole life people told her she was a man. She transitioned, and now it's time to put away her 'boy doll'; her constructed male identity.
Share My Blankets
With a two-piece band, Aly will guide you through the last five years of her life; coming into her queerness, processing sexual experiences - good and bad, and reclaiming their identity.
MELT After Dark Party
Featuring DJ Black Amex, celebrate Brisbane’s diverse and generous queer culture at MELT’s free opening party and help make it a year to remember.
The Bowery Haus: Closing Party
Celebrate the MELT closing party at The Bowery House, a costume party celebrating inclusivity, self-expression and one of Australia’s most legendary queer icons, Leigh Bowery.
Tragic Trivia
Brisbane’s most glorious (and sweaty) drag superstars take us through the colourful pages of the Queer History books – testing your knowledge along the way.
Gayming Night
Coordinated by Hella Gay Games, step-up to a mix of tabletop gaming and digital platforms for a gaming experience that’s as diverse as it is inclusive.


Robert Webb and Benjamin Law: How Not To Be a Boy
Benjamin Law sits down with Robert Webb (Peep Show, That Mitchell and Webb Look) to look back over his life and delve into the absurd expectations boys and men have thrust upon them at every stage of life.
Creating Ourselves: A Queer Youth Panel
Benjamin Law introduces MELT audiences to indigenous activist Aretha Stewart-Brown, writer/performer Aly Lorén and musician/singer Josh Daveta to discover their journeys of growing up queer.
Quinn Eades: Endings and Beginnings: Writing the 2017 Equal Marriage Postal Survey
Come and listen to poet, writer, and academic Quinn Eades read a selection of his writing, discuss writing as activism, and answer your questions!


MELT Portrait Prize
Now in its third year, the MELT Portrait Prize is an opportunity for visual artists across the globe to celebrate their heroes in the LGBTIQ+ community.
Unique Exotic
A retrospective exhibition of Hillary Green - a visual artist who explores ideas of selfhood, representation, and performance through the lens of portrait photography.
Hung Dada
An exploration of what it’s like to be a gay man in a sex-crazed culture.
The Cave
A single-player computer game that investigates the philosophical function of storytelling through drawing, sound and installation using comic book aesthetics and the subversion of mythological symbolism.
Men opening up and revealing their pain through the tears they shed in video portraits.
Robbing the Muse
A collection of photographic portraits inspired by the words and lyrics of Tori Amos’ 2014 LP ‘Unrepentant Geraldines’.
True Toxic Love (Tyson)
An exploration into the highest highs and the lowest lows of queer relationships, presented using augmented reality technology and invisible to the naked eye until revealed using a device and a free iOS/Android app.

MELT Festival runs 17-27 May at Brisbane Powerhouse.



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