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Glittering Good Times

Mparntwe/Alice Springs, well known for its richness in diversity, is the proud home to an extensive, enriching and vibrant queer community. This month’s fabALICE Festival celebrates the heck out of that.

By Hannah Muir

For the fourth year in a row – minus one pandemic related cancellation – a handful of dedicated local volunteers have been working tirelessly to produce a full weekend of engaging, fun and celebratory events that celebrate inclusivity and visibility.

The vibrancy of the celebrations is the perfect complement to Central Australia’s desert landscape, the ruggedness of the glorious ranges popping with glitter, sequins and feathers is a sight.

Kicking off festivities in spectacular fashion is a special Sound of Music sing-along at Araluen Art Centre, hosted by international piano accordionist, comedian and style icon, Hans. Speaking of fashion, dress in theme to take part in the costume parade if you fancy more than simply connecting to the nostalgia of Julie Andrews frolicking the countryside.

From there, the weekend is full of cabaret, comedy, community night markets with performers, fabFRIDAY Jam at the Jump Inn, and lip sync battles at Epilogue Lounge, just to name a few. For the curious, there’s the Sexual and Gender Diversity Community Forum, and for the kids, there’s the Drag Queen Story Time and Children’s Show.

An expected highlight of the program is the fabALICE Under the Stars Gala. Hosted by Marzi Panne and Miss Ellaneous, the line-up is glittered with stars including 100% Kylie, Drag Territory, DJ Cliterally, and more. Even the quarry sparkles, illuminated by the colours of the rainbow.

fabALICE is a wonderful opportunity to express compassion and fondness for this special place through space activation, fun and positivity. A conscious decision by the community-based volunteer organisers, who believe in the resilience of Central Australia, the festival injects extra life and vibrancy into the town in a sign of support.

Being the very next weekend after Mardi Gras, fabALICE’s Anya Lorimer says interstate and international pride travellers should definitely be putting fabALICE on their future itineraries.

“Come and join us for the very best afterparty in the desert!”

fabALICE Festival

Photos: Lisa Hatz Photography

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