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Sydney Mardi Gras Parade is open for entries

Sydney’s iconic LGBTI Mardi Gras pride parade is looking for participants, with entries for the parade opening earlier this month
Participants in the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade
Photo by Ann-Marie Calilhanna/Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Applications to march in the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade opened earlier this month and if you or a group want to have an entry in the parade you have until 10 January to lodge an Expression of Interest with parade organizers and until 17 January to lodge a formal application.

Groups that are either LGBTI or supportive of LGBTI people are eligible to take part in the 2014 parade but must not have a message that is discriminatory towards other groups.

Entries will need to give details of their design concepts for their parade entry, and can enter as either individuals or groups.

Single entries or groups of five or less people will need to pay an entry fee of $50, while larger LGBTI community groups or not-for-profit groups will need to pay a fee of $150.

For-profit businesses and government agencies will need to pay an entry fee of $800 to be considered for the parade.

After lodging an expression of interest, parade organizers will contact you for a consultation in which they will discuss your artistic ideas and production values and how to maximize the communication of your entry’s message.

Organizers encourage entries to be as visually striking as possible and encourage entries to include props, giant puppets, matching costumes and choreography.

Being fabulous is all about inspiring our audience to feel something, whether they laugh, cry, applaud, reflect or cheer,’ parade organizers say.

‘The aim is to wow each member of the audience within the 90 seconds that they see your entry – so keep your messages simple, clear and visually exciting.’

Entries can also include motor vehicles such as trucks, vans, cars and buses but there will be a limit to the number of vehicles in the parade each year.

‘Vehicles can add a lot to an entry by carrying people, lights, sound equipment and being transformed into a moving piece of art,’ parade organizers say.

‘Some vehicles are about as visually exciting as a refrigerator on wheels, so use your imagination and dress it up. You have greater impact if your entry doesn’t look like a
vehicle. The front of your vehicle is what the audience first sees – and first impressions count.

‘Make the audience wow! Try to find inventive ways of framing the cab, covering the wheels and transforming the vehicle as effectively as possible.’

GSN is the 2014 Global News Supporter of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Festival.

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