The iconic Gertrude and Smith Streets once again transformed into a free, all-day, jam-packed, block party for all ages, with multiple live music stages and performances from local and international musicians and artists to celebrate Victoria’s diverse LGBTIQ+ communities.
Australian/Nigerian triple threat performer, and queer advocate Keiynan Lonsdale (aka Rainbow Boy) headlined Victoria’s Pride!!!!! Proving to be both an influential force within his generation and a powerful advocate and representative of the queer community, Keiynan has been recognised as GQ Australia’s Actor of the Year, a recipient of the NYC LGBT Centre for the Youth Advocacy Award and for his debut album ‘Rainbow Boy’, was nominated for a GLAAD award which is designed to honour musicians who use their musical repertoire to highlight LGBTIQA+ acceptance.
Touted as the leader of ‘the list of Aussie LGBTQ+ acts to watch’ by Rolling Stone Australia, Keiynan treated Melbourne audiences with an impressive range of original music and dance, ahead of his role co-hosting and performing at the closing concert of World Pride (Sydney) in March.
Multi-award-winning musician and proud Gumbaynggir and Dunghutti woman, Casey Donovan (pictured left) performed ahead of her co-hosting gig at WorldPride in Sydney, will grace the line-up alongside Banoffee, the artist pioneering the future of pop; and Filipino/Australian artist, musician, songwriter, producer, and filmmaker, Chela, who has achieved international acclaim with her adventurous synth-pop musical style, and Alter Boy, a community collective fronted by trans/hard-of-hearing vocalist, Molly Priest, that works between sound and silence, voice and Auslan to express music and storytelling.
Fellow performers included the transformative, multi-disciplinary artist and advocate, Jaguar Jonze; Melbourne-based queer bubblegum punk band Cry Club (pictured right); DJ drag queen duo Kali Fornikate and Sabrina Babyslut, also known as Jawbreakers; and hot 80s all-women supergroup, The Lost Girls.
Local businesses all down Gertrude and Smith Street benefited from the party – serving food and drink to the thousands of people expected to attend across the day, while some will be incorporated into the party with shopfront activations and performances in venues.
Victoria’s Pride is an opportunity for LGBTQIA+ Victorians and the wider community to come together as one to celebrate the remarkable journey of equality through inspirational arts, community involvement, food, and culture.
Photos: DaveyGTG / Guidetogay