It's the fifth year for Oxford Street's annual Oxtravaganza.
'Darlo does Mardi Gras' with celebrations and activations for two weeks: “We’ve got a lot of exciting things planned for the two weeks of Mardi Gras,” Stephan Gyory, Chair of the Darlinghurst Business Partnership (DBP) says. “Our aim is to celebrate Mardi Gras, support local business and give as many performers a platform to do their thing as we can!”
With the official Mardi Gras Parade location moved to Sydney Cricket Ground, Oxford Street and surrounds plans to carry on as the Pink Mile lights up and Oxtravaganza sees more than 100 businesses coming together to offer retail promotions, live music, viewing parties, performances, outdoor entertainment, art walks, and food and drink deals.
Image © Robert Knapman
Of course, you can expect to find Parade viewing parties sprinkled throughout Oxford Street in bars, clubs, retail outlets and maybe even local residences!
“This area has always had a history of being a place to come to, have a good time, and feel welcome,” Stephan continues. “It’s been a stomping ground for oddballs, queers, bohemians, and artists, whose influences delightfully combined to form a unique cultural hub.”
“Oxford Street is an unconventional and non-judgmental space where anything goes and everyone is welcome.”
Perhaps you're hankering for a bit of retail therapy? Maybe you're not 100 per cent sorted for your outfit for the Parade? Luckily, 'Shop Till You Drop Day' will aim to provide the best with vintage stores, drag queen costumes, leather and sequins. Not only that, but live performers will be roaming the streets and dropping into stores too!
Image © Robert Knapman
Lifesavers With Pride will be hosting a car windscreen wash in Foley Street, so bring along a gold coin donation to be treated to some entertainment, eye candy and, of course, a clean screen. . . ! Meanwhile, the Ms Oxford Street Pageant will see up to 20 competitors vying for the title and a prize haul fit for a queen.
Art walk 'Darlings And Dissidents' features stories of Oxford Street from the First Nations to the Razorhurst era, NAS alumni and more recent LGBTQIA+ history of the area.
Other Arts/Performance Highlights At Oxtravaganza 2021
has been documenting Oxtravaganza and the Mardi Gras Parade for many years and his photography is on display in windows at the Rainbow Crossing Hub. Darlo Art Walk
is perfect way to spend a summer evening.
Room 205 hosts Doris 'Fabulosity' Fish
– 'A Life in Drag!', an exciting glimpse into the life of Doris Fish, (aka Phillip Mills) a Sydney drag queen who started her career in Sydney before moving to San Francisco. A performer, a movie star and a Mardi Gras pioneer.
30th Anniversary Screening of the cult drag science-fiction classic 'Vegas In Space'
at Universal. Campy, psychedelic, and utterly bizarre, 'Vegas in Space' was one of the first truly queer midnight movies, and a cinematic revelation. The film will be accompanied by the Miss Universal Galactic Drag Contest, compered by Miss 3D and Etcetera, with judges Danny Abood, Bob Downe and Cindy Pastel. The Fabulous Wondermama
has a new book out – turns out she's also a dab hand at graphics too. Book signings and story time at The Bookstore. Art Drawing Class
at Chingalings hosted by Queer Sydney. Expect to draw, discuss and delight.
The Oxtravaganza Lounge upstairs at Stonewall will be home to this year’s Cabaret Oxtravaganza.
House of Mince presents 'BONA VARDA'
at the Oxtravaganza Lounge Stonewall for two nights only. 'It's Not Just For Gays Anymore'
, a night of cabaret with multi DIVA Award-winner Mini Cooper. 'Obsessed Boylesque'
featuring Mr Boylesque Australia Rhys Lightning. Bringing brash, ballsy and bombastic brilliance into Burlesque. Mega Male Box
Sydney’s hottest male pick-up night is held over three floors and four bars until the early morning. Trans Glamore
has a new line-up of amazing performers hosted by the fabulous Victoria Anthony, trans showgirl and DIVA Award-winning DJ of the year.
Claire's Kitchen: 'Tim McKew Toasts Noel Coward'
, acclaimed from Melbourne to Shanghai and New York, Tim McKew’s shows set the benchmark for interpreting the comic wit and genius of Noel Coward.
The Beresford presents ‘Step Back In Time’
, a three-course dinner and a show starring Mini Cooper, Jacqui St Hyde, Mynx Moscato, Troy Stone.
Oxtravaganza runs from 19 February-7 March.