The spectacle of the queer “Other”: Māori gay(zing) at the 41st Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras 2019
This article will explore some of my observations of the 41st Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras 2019. I travelled to Sydney on Thursday 28 February. Rather appropriately, I selected the 2018 biographical film, Bohemian Rhapsody, as inflight entertainment, all the while contemplating what sequin-encrusted experiences I might encounter during my stay in Sydney. I had booked accommodation at the Pullman Sydney Hyde Park Hotel months in advance. Like every other surface in and around Oxford Street, the hotel had been queered-up with rainbows and a life-sized bejewelled unicorn in the foyer. While eating breakfast on Friday morning, the shimmering disco balls and background dance music seemed to be inviting me to shimmy my way to the egg station. Staff and guests alike, including entire families, were buzzing about the upcoming climax to a month-long festival of all things gay featuring over 190 floats, 12,500 participants, and thousands upon thousands of spectators from Australia and around the world (Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Limited, 2019a).