by MICHAEL ROLIK
NMG CEO

…the party itself.

This is year two of the policy not to announce party talent. Or rather it’s the second year of the return of this Party tradition after a fairly brief break.

What do you think of the policy? It may depend on how old you are. On the whole younger people ask why we keep this massive news a surprise.

If we want to sell more tickets, why don’t we announce our biggest names? Can’t we forewarn people so they don’t miss their favourite artist performing?

The people who have been attending Mardi Gras Party for longer than they’d like to admit will tell you it’s a welcome return — and we think they’re right.

We’re one of the only parties in the world that keeps you guessing, and it’s something unique about Mardi Gras Party.

In the weeks leading up to Kylie’s first Mardi Gras performance the rumour mill went into overdrive. It was never confirmed, and that anticipation and excitement on the night made for an electric atmosphere at the Party — especially the moment she finally appeared on stage.

How is it that we get these big names when we don’t have million-dollar budgets? This is the other way that the secrecy helps.

If an artist performs it is usually for a fraction of their usual fee or indeed for nothing.

It’s a gift and so by performing they are telling us in effect that they value the gay community.

Often we’re gunning for artists who are here touring or appearing exclusively at another event. So one of the conditions of their performance is that we don’t advertise them as performing a sideshow at Mardi Gras Party. They’ll deny their appearance. So will we.

Last year we delivered a truly stellar line-up. This year’s is going to light up March 5. Happy Mardi Gras!

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