Pussycat Dolls alumni and international pop sensation Nicole Scherzinger has been announced as the latest international star set to jet into Sydney for next year’s WorldPride festival.
Scherzinger will join the likes of Kelly Rowland, Kylie Minogue, Charli XCX and Jessica Mauboy, who are due to perform at various stages throughout the mega-event.
The event will have opening and closing ceremonies, along with parades, festivals, theatre, art and a human rights conference aiming to support and amplify the voices of marginalised people within the community.
“The first WorldPride in the Southern Hemisphere is a significant moment for both for the LGBTQIA+ community in Australia and Sydney. Now is the time to get ready for the global LGBTQIA+ reunion we’ve all been waiting for,” Sydney WorldPride’s Chief Executive, Kate Wickett said.
Here’s a rundown of everything we know so far.
WorldPride is a global festival held every two to three years that celebrates inclusivity, diversity and acceptance within the LGBTQIA+ community.
The first event was held in Rome in 2000 and has since been organised to coincide with historic events in the community’s rich history, including the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.
Cities need to compete to host, with Sydney successfully winning the bid in 2019 – beating out Houston in Texas and Montreal in Canada.
Sydney will be the first city in the southern hemisphere to host and this year’s celebration lines up with the 45th anniversary of the first Mardi Gras Parade in Australia.
For 17 days, Sydney’s inner-city will transform into a Pride hub, with a number of streets set to shutdown to make way for “Pride villages”.
The NSW Government estimate the event will funnel $600 million into the local economy.
Revellers will be able to enjoy a plethora of offerings for Sydney WorldPride.
From marches to festivals, human rights conferences and ceremonies, here are some of the key dates to remember – and in some cases book tickets for.
Mardi Gras Fair Day – February 19
The iconic Mardi Gras Fair Day will be held at Victoria Park in Chippendale in the city’s inner-city.
Fair Day is one of the most well-loved events in the Mardi Gras calendar, where punters can enjoy live music, dance floors as well as plenty of food and drinks.
Mardi Gras Paradiso Pool Party – February 20
The bash will be held Ivy Pool Club, where ticketholders will get the chance to dance the night away to some of the country’s biggest musical acts.
The line-up is yet to drop, but think DJs, cocktails and speedos.
WorldPride Opening Concert – February 24
Held at The Domain in the heart of Sydney’s CBD, the WorldPride official opener will be headlined by none other than Australia’s pop princess: Kylie Minogue.
Also set to perform on the night is UK pop diva Charli XCX and Aussie songstress Jessica Mauboy.
Casey Donovan and drag superstar Courtney Act will host the event, which will be broadcast live.
Mardi Gras Parade – February 25
The Mardi Gras parade will return to Oxford Street after the pandemic forced the event into the Sydney Cricket Ground for two years.
Labelled the “biggest event” in the WorldPride calendar, glittery spectators will watch on as 12,500 people and over 200 floats make their way along a path forged by civil rights activists in the late 70s.
Mardi Gras Afterparty – February 25
The party so popular, it’s already sold out.
The Afterparty is held in Moore Park’s Horden Pavilion and in recent years has been headlined by international superstars Sam Smith and Dua Lipa.
It’s not known which big name will take the stage yet this year.
Domain Dance Party – February 26
There’ll be no time for a hangover the day after the Mardi Gras parade with US Grammy winner Kelly Rowland to descend on the Domain alongside DJ Dan Slater for a seven hour dance-off with 10,000 revelers.
“From dancers onstage, to surprise acts around you, this will be a gay ol’ feast for the eyes and ears,” event organisers said.
WorldPride Human Rights Conference – March 1 – 3
More than 60 local and international speakers will take the stage at Darling Harbour’s International Convention and Exhibition Centre over three days.
First Nations leaders and elders, along with lawmakers, academics and LGBTQIA+ activists will discuss how to make positive changes for equality and justice.
United Nations Independent Expert on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Victor Madrigal-Borloz has been confirmed as a special keynote speaker.
The program will focus on:
- Community and Culture
- Justice and Freedom
- Health and Wellbeing
- Visibility and Inclusion
Bondi Beach Party – March 4
Dubbed an “uniquely Australian experience”, this huge bash will be headlined by US superstar Nicole Scherzinger and will bring together 12,000 people for a seven hour-long party on the shoreline of Australia’s most famous beach.
Aussie DJs set to heat up the stage alongside Scherzinger include dameeeela, Jarred Baker, Jacqui Cunningham, DJ Charlie Villas and DJ Dan Murphy.
“I am beyond excited to be welcoming Nicole Scherzinger to Sydney for her only performance at Sydney WorldPride,” Sydney WorldPride’s Chief Executive Kate Wickett said.
“Nicole Scherzinger’s performances are always electric and she is sure to raise the temperature at this sizzling beach party.
“Bondi Beach Party will be a uniquely Australian experience, so I’m particularly pleased Sydney WorldPride will be showcasing an all-Australian DJ line-up, sharing the sound of Australia’s club scene with the world.”
Some 50,000 people are to set march across the Sydney Harbour Bridge in their loudest and brightest attire, making a powerful statement about LGBTQIA+ visibility and awareness.
Where will Sydney WorldPride events be held?
The location of individual events will vary over the 17 days, however they will primarily be in Sydney’s inner city.
Specifically, the suburbs adjacent to Oxford Street, including Darlinghurst, Surry Hills, Paddington and Moore Park.
A number of streets will be closed to traffic between February 24 and March 5.
“For nine days from February 24, Crown Street will be closed between Oxford and Campbell Streets, as will Riley Street between Oxford and Goulburn Streets,” event organisers said.
“The area will become home to daily stalls, performances, dining and a place to connect with friends and family in between WorldPride events.
“Crown Street will be home to a stage with nightly shows and special extended entertainment on weekends.
“To mark the final weekend of WorldPride, Oxford Street will also be closed for once-in-a-lifetime street party, all the way from College Street to Flinders Street.”
Who is performing at Sydney WorldPride?
Kelly Rowland will headline alongside Kylie Minogue, Nicole Scherzinger, Jessica Mauboy and Charli XCX, but dozens of other local and international acts are also set to perform at various events across the 17 days.
Muna, G Flip, Keiynan Lonsdale, Peach PRC, Alter Boy, BVT and Vetta Borne have been confirmed as support acts.
Fun and flamboyant displays at Mardi Gras