Are you ready for a summer of glitz and glamour? Midsumma Festival is kicking off this weekend with Midsumma Carnival, followed by an incredible few weeks of fun and fabulous events. In this massive LGBTQIA+ arts and culture festival, there will be a spectacular line-up of performances, exhibitions, live music, theatre, spoken word, cabaret, social events and more! Midsumma Festival will launch with the Carnival on Sunday January 23, and end on February 13.
This extravagant three-week summer festival is returning to Melbourne for its 34th year. There’s over 194 events to choose from, with involvement from over 500 culture-makers, in over 100 venues across Melbourne and Victoria. Alongside the festival, Midsumma will host its carefully curated program, Midsumma Presents. There will be 34 events that highlight the unsung voices of queer intersectional communities.
The major project of focus this year, AND/OR, will focus on the intersections and overlaps between the LGBTQIA+ and disabled communities. The program of works in AND/OR are disability-led and feature multiple perspectives, from the vulnerable to the riotous.
“After such a challenging few years, we are thrilled to once again deliver such a broad range of events that highlight the talent and diversity of our artists, and our communities, in such a vital way,” said Karen Bryant, Midsumma CEO.
What can you expect this year?
The festival will launch with Midsumma Carnival on Sunday January 23. Head to Alexandra Gardens for a massive 11-hour extravaganza, and enjoy fabulous performances that will give you a taste of what to expect during the festival this year. There will also be the beloved Dog Show, plenty of food and cool stalls to check out.
Other highlights from the festival program include:
- Fun Home – Based on Alison Bechdel’s bestselling graphic novel about growing up and coming out, this Tony Award-winning musical is coming to Arts Centre Melbourne for a sensational season.
- Queers in Science – On Neurodiversity – This livestreamed webinar will explore the science behind neurodivergence, and feature a panel discussion with neurodivergent individuals about their day-to-day experience.
- An Intimate Evening With Granny Bingo – Returning for two nights after a sold-out season at Melbourne International Comedy Festival, enjoy Melbourne’s favourite nans Edith Vale (Thomas Jaspers) and Maureen McGillicuddy (Kyle Minall) as they let loose and bare all over one intimate evening.
- Seamen! The Sea Shanty Spectacular – Head to the Curtin and get ready for some rum-soaked shenanigans as ten indie choir performers provide a modern spin on some saucy sea shanties.
- The Seven Gins of Pride – Enjoy a delightful two hour masterclass on gin.
- Queer-aoke – Head to Fringe Common Rooms and sing your heart out to some iconic queer anthems from Lady Gaga, Elton John and more!
Of course, the iconic Midsumma Pride March will take place, parading down Fitzroy Street in St Kilda on February 6. This will celebrate Pride March’s 27th anniversary, and audiences can tune in virtually or join the party at a participating venue on Fitzroy Street. Dykes on Bikes will precede the march. After that, the march itself will be led by Boon Wurrung Elders and a Rainbow Aboriginal Float. At the end of the march, head to Catani Gardens for DJs, live performances and celebrations.
This is just scratching the surface of all the wonderful events happening at Midsumma Festival. Explore the full program by checking out their website.