Midsumma Festival

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Marches smiling and waving rainbow / LGBTQIA pride flags
Photograph: Supplied / ID Collective

Time Out says

Melbourne's festival of queer culture grows bigger and prouder every year

Drag superstars, cult cabaret artists and gender-bending performance artists take over the city this summer... OK, scratch summer, but everything else is still on! 

The good news is Midsumma is back. The confusing news is it's back in autumn. Australia's leading LGBTQIA+ arts and culture festival returns for 2021, rising like a glittering phoenix from the garbage fire of 2020.

From April 19 to May 5, Melbourne will host nearly 150 events championing queer communities and creatives through visual art, performance, parties, film, music and more. 

This year's festival is focusing on "the art of the possible" and will feature 100 open-access events made by queer communities, for queer communities. One of the major highlights of the 2021 event is Midsumma Live at the Bowl, a two-night performance extravaganza at Sidney Myer Music Bowl. Also new to this year is Midsumma Presents: a curated program putting the spotlight on sometimes unheard voices from intersectional queer communities. 

Other Midsumma events to look out for include A Strange Space (a projection and performance art exhibition at the new Collingwood Yards), Goddess Grooves (a music event at Chapel Off Chapel) and Dolly Diamond's Star for a Night (where Dolly will transform contestants into their idols). 

Before you ask, yes, the Midsumma Pride March is back. The parade and party is happening on May 23 (after the official Misdumma festival dates) in Fitzroy Street, St Kilda. Things are a bit different this year, however, and you'll have to take part in the march either by booking into a local venue or by watching the march at home via livestream. No packing out the streets we're afraid. The annual Midsumma Carnival, however, will not be running this year due to current public health restrictions.

You can explore the full Midsumma program by visiting the website

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