Three years ago, Tristan Meecham from All The Queens Men founded the Coming Back Out Ball, a celebration that not only gave back to the LGBTI+ elders of our communities, but provided them with a lavish space to proudly be themselves.
This year the ball has evolved into the Coming Back Out Salon, a special soirée in partnership with Yo-Yo Ma’s The Bach Project, as part of the Day of Action to celebrate and acknowledge LGBTI+ elders.
“The inaugural ball was culturally and historically significant to many intersections of the LGBTI+ community,” Meecham told the Star Observer.
“It was our way of giving back to a group of people who, although certainly deserve it, did not always have the opportunities to access a lavish event of recognition and celebration.
“In the past we had two really fantastic evening events with three course meals and wonderful entertainment, but this year we are switching the format up a bit and actually, when you think about it, an afternoon event lines up better for the wonderful LGBTI elders who will be attending,” he said.
Taking place on Saturday 9 November at Melbourne’s Mural Hall, the event will have 350+ lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, gender diverse and intersex elders and their allies celebrate as they eat, drink, dance, reminisce and dream together to build a bright, accessible and inclusive future.
Image: The Coming Back Out Ball. Supplied
With the dress code themed ‘fabulous’, it’s going to be beautiful and continues to be a celebration for those that have come before, but also for those that would like to come out for the very first time.
“Initially this was just for elders,” Meecham said, “but it has become a social event for the whole community, and while the elders are celebrated, we have everyone coming along and there is a wonderful intergenerational connection. With people learning from each other and sharing stories.
“No matter what age you are, you can be yourself, and people often forget that many in our community come out at a later age. This is not just a celebration; it is also a safe space for people to come and be themselves.”
Image : The Coming Back Out Ball. Supplied
Classical musical royalty Yo-Yo Ma will be playing at the event as part of The Bach Project, which is touring around the world.
“He is performing 36 concerts in 36 countries and one of those will be at Arts Centre Melbourne, but the day after, he does a day of action,” Meecham said. “Partnering with local community groups and people who are speaking about important issues and also doing really wonderful things. We were chosen as that event and it brought me to tears when I found out.”
Supported by the Victorian State Government, the City of Melbourne and the Victorian Seniors Festival, this is one event not to miss.
Tickets are free but booking is essential, and they are more than half sold out already — so get cracking!
Click here for more details and grab your tickets, or call on 0497 584 843.