Marri Madung Butbut

Rebecca Varidel
5th Feb 2023


A host of free events has been revealed to complement the existing ticketed events announced for Marri Madung Butbut (Many Brave Hearts): Sydney WorldPride’s First Nations Gathering Space.

From 23 - 28 February 2023, on Gadigal Country, renowned multi-arts space Carriageworks will come alive with a celebration of LGBTQIA+SB First Nations brilliance, artistry and culture, as part Sydney WorldPride 2023.

The program will be the largest Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and global First Nation LGBTQIA+SB celebration ever to take place in Australia.

“It’s so important that we celebrate the creativity and brilliance of not only the oldest living culture on the planet, but the oldest LGBTQIA+ culture as well" Ben Graetz, Festival Creative Director for Sydney WorldPride, explained.

“I’m proud to be putting LGBTQIA+SB performers on a such a major stage and sharing their talents with mob and the world.

“Marri Madung Butbut is a place where everyone is welcome to experience the rainbow heart of the oldest surviving culture on the planet.”

Marri Madung Butbut will kick off with a free-to-attend opening night party, Djarraba Disco (23 Feb), curated by The Huxleys, plus another 11 free events:

Tidda Bingo (27 Feb) – Western Sydney’s finest, Tyra Bankstown hosts a game of bingo on steroids, accompanied by some fabulous drag performances.

Koori Gras (28 Feb) – an evening of variety performance from Warrane (Sydney’s) beautiful LGBTQIA+SB community. The event is co-produced by Moogahlin Performing Arts and Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and will include performances from Nana Miss Koori, Nova Gina and BeeDazzled Shanks.

Queer Koori-oke (27 Feb) – a chance to sing your heart out with 2Joocee at a deadly night of Koori-oke with ya mob.

Bloodlines (5 Jan-5 Mar) – Created by famed artists The Huxleys, Bloodlines is a multi-artform exhibition which honours and worships legendary artists lost to HIV/AIDS.

Ōvah Ōvah (26 Feb) – a Pasifika variety show celebrating femme Fa’afafine performers, including Jaycee Tanuvasa, Killia, Jamaica Moana and the House of Iman.

The launch (26 Feb) of NANGAMAY (dream) MANA (gather) DJURALI (grow), a world-first anthology of LGBTQIA+SB poetry.

Deadly Queer Deaf Mob (26 Feb) – a panel discussion providing insights into the Deaf First Nations community.

Watch Party – Live and Proud: Sydney WorldPride opening concert, Presented by American Express (24 Feb) – watch the ABC broadcast with hosts Elaine Crombie and BeeDazzled Shanks and DJ NAINAN.

Watch Party – Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade (25 Feb) – Hosted by cabaret diva Constantina Bush and Rose Quartz Club Ōvah (26 Feb) – international DJ and activist Lady Shaka, and Neesha Alexander lead this party celebrating Pasifika trans, femme and Fa’afafine voices.

New Gen Takeover: The Future is Blak (28 Feb) – A closing night party celebrating a new generation of mob talent, hosted by Brotherboy Kaiwar Silky.

Trading Blak Mini Market will also be offering a curated selection of First Nations wares from First Nations owned and operated businesses across the six days of the Gathering Space.

Food and beverage will also be available, with Aboriginal-owned catering business Indigiearth operating out of the Carriagework’s café, Cornerstone, and serving up delicious food and native ingredients.

Ticketed events include:

Klub Village (23-27 Feb) – a cabaret experience like nothing you’ve experienced, the unstoppable Kween Kong is placing First Nation and queer allied artist storytelling front and centre, combining drag, circus and dance in a spectacular show. A rotating cast of dancers and performers include Sela Vai, Humxn, Bizzi Body, Chocolate Boxx and Aboriginal comedy All Star Jay Wymarra.

Camp Culture (25-26 Feb) – an all-ages, interactive, family-friendly circus show with Dale Woodbridge-Brown.

Ailan Songs Project (26 Feb) – enjoy an evening of historical songs from the Torres Strait with a mix of ancient languages and tropical island reggae grooves

Daddy (23-24 Feb) – a hilarious, provocative and heartfelt play by and starring Joel Bray that meshes the impact of colonialisation with the quest for love in the Grindr era and includes the theatrical use of powdered sugar!

Chase (26-28 Feb) – experimental theatre and arthouse cinema collide with First Nation identity in this biting satire by Carly Sheppard and Kamarra Bell-Wykes, and starring Carly Sheppard as the titular character Chase.

Miss First Nation: Supreme Queen (26, 27, 28 Feb) – the ultimate drag competition, which sees eight queens battle it out over three nights to be crowned First Nations drag royalty.

$20+bf tickets for all shows at Marri Madung Butbut: the First Nations Gathering Space are available for First Nations people of any nation via the MobTix program (click here to apply). General admission tickets are also available via the Sydney WorldPride website.

The events at Carriageworks compliment the Blak & Deadly: The First Nations Gala Concert (2 March) with tickets available via MobTix ($49+bf).

Sydney WorldPride 2023 runs for 17 days, from 17 February to 5 March 2023 incorporating Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. Tickets for Official events via Tickets for community events at

The full festival program over 300 events across WorldPride Official, WorldPride Arts, WorldPride Sports and Pride Amplified is available on the Sydney WorldPride website.