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Events \ Theatre \ Comedy \ Music \ Books \ Film
Melbourne's Midsumma Festival has upgraded for 2011,
with a new riverside location for Carnival Day and T Dance, an
iPhone app for the program, and a promise to reach more LGBT
people than ever before with 150 events on o er.
e festival's opener, Carnival, will move for the rst time on January 16
from its traditional home at Alexandra Gardens to Birrarung Marr, home to
major music festival Parklife. e main stage on the upper level will provide
entertainment, including Dulcie's Dog Show, with T Dance on the middle
level and stallholders on the lower level.
Sircuit Bar and Glasshouse Hotel will host
the bars for the first time. Minus 18 will
provide a space for young Carnival-goers,
and rainbow families can chill in the Art-
The official festival launch kicked off last
week and included Triple J breakfast host and comedian Tom Ballard
as MC and performances by Trevor Ashley and dance music darling
Zoe Badwi, who will be the face of Midsumma music at T Dance. City
of Melbourne Councillor Jennifer Cannis announced an additional
$20,000 on top of its $150,000 three-year pledge for the festival to
support the city's Late Night Programming Initiative. The festival's fo -
cus on inner city venues will continue with cutesy cabaret venue, Kaye
Sera's Bizarre joining the fold of festival hubs alongside The Butterfly
Club, Gasworks Arts Park, Northcote Town Hall and The Glasshouse.
In 2011 organisers have stretched their wings, forming a joint ini-
tiative with Hobsons Bay City Council to produce events and encour-
age those living in the west to participate. Midsumma general manager
Adam Lowe said the changes were designed to include greater numbers
of LGBT people.
"Every Midsumma festiv
new. It's time now for new attitudes towards gay marriage and re-
lationships, it's time for new commitments to diversity and accessibil-
ity and new attitudes to working together. Throughout all the festival
program this time for new is well and truly reflected," he said.
Lesbians will have no trouble filling their time. Canadian life part-
ners and storytellers Jan Andrews and Jennifer Cayley will invite audi-
ences into their personal journey through their show, The Book of Spells
-- A Love Story. Sydney performer Candy
Royalle will host a one-woman show, while
Ladies Prefer Brunettes offers a show of
"acrobatics in heels". Lesbian dance night
Pinkalicious will host its second birthday,
and Blonde on the Bay promises a boat-
load of girlie antics.
Dykes on Bikes will lead out the Pride March at St Kilda on February
6 with the after party in Catani Gardens.
Art Series Hotels (a festival partner) will offer accommodation pack-
ages. The Cullen Hotel, smack in the middle of Melbourne's southern
gay precinct in Prahran, is modelled on the controversial work of gay
artist Adam Cullen.
For the first time, festival-goers can download an iPhone app for the
2011 program. Save your favourites, check what's on each day and link
through to Midsumma's Twitter and Facebook page. Locals can also
get Midsumma on the box, with community TV broadcasting 'A Taste
of Midsumma', hosted by Michael Dalton, Lulu McClatchy and James
Findlay, each Monday night at 8pm throughout the festival.
For program details and booking details, visit www.midsumma.org.au
Queer is fashionable this summa. By Cathy Anderson
festival is about
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