It’s forecast to be an extremely pleasant 22 degrees in Sydney on Saturday and half of gaytown will be down at Summer Gay Day at Moore Park, now in its second big year.
This year, Summer Gay Day will feature two dance spaces where you can party from 2pm well into the night with a line-up including Ruby Rose, Dirty Laundry, Axle Whitehead, the Stafford Brothers, Mobin Master, Alan Thompson, Lisa German, Paul Heron, Kate Monroe, Neroli, Beth Yen, Eddie Coulter, Jason Barry, Matt Sawyer, Aunty Mavis, the 4 O’Clock Dancers and the Hoopaholics.
A smaller party but no paler in significance, the Non-Scene: Afternoon Delight party at the Camperdown Bowling Club on Sunday December 6 heralds the return of Sydney’s famed twisted sister Cindy Pastel, who for those younger readers, is the drag queen that Hugo Weaving’s Priscilla, Queen of the Desert character Mitzi was based on.
Having spent 10 years in Perth looking after his mother and drying out from the demon rum, Cindy has returned to the scene of the crime and is very excited to be back. Non-Scene promoter Ben Drayton is excited about the performance too: Cindy’s way more than a drag queen, she’s a persona … a comedian or something. Her outfits were always like the weirdest shit, always really bent stuff -” she was never a pretty lady in a nice dress. When I first met her it was obvious that there was more going on with her than with anyone else at the time. I remember being at the Oxford one night having beers with mates and she turned up as the Log Lady from Twin Peaks, when Twin Peaks was really big. It wasn’t for any show, she was just there, nursing a log and in plaids and tweeds. She’s a walking performance piece.
Ben didn’t know what sort of performance they were in for, but I managed to get Cindy to reveal that she’s performing to a rare Nina Hagen track, which she’s been trying to get her hands on for years.
Tobin Saunders, aka Vanessa Wagner, runs the parties with Ben Drayton. Cindy said, Tobin’s been working in a tuckshop every day because she has to pay this exorbitant amount of money to hire me.
Ben said to expect an old school Sydney type party. The parties that were always on the edge of the gay scene and the edge of the straight scene, where it’s not about who you sleep with, it’s about a state of mind. The music policy is black-based which can encompass old school funk, disco and early house music.
We’ve hired a beautiful sound system, said Ben. We’ve got homo decorations and grandma and grandpa working behind the bar. It’s a heartfelt little bowling club party.
With another gig booked at the Bacchanalia New Year’s Eve party, featuring DJ Paul Holden, Cindy said wryly, Hopefully next year will be a good year for me. Maybe I’ll hit the A-grade of drag! Tickets to Non-Scene: Afternoon Delight are $20 plus booking fee from So Music Newtown or Spank Records on Bourke St, and $25/$15 concession on the door. You can actually bowl, too: it’s an extra $10. Non-Scene runs from 4pm till 11pm.
This Sunday, November 30, Loose Ends at Phoenix features a couple of very special guests from New York. The first is DJ/party girl Lauren Flax who has been turning it out for the last decade or so in NYC with her eclectic hipster style as well as DJing with Fischerspooner when they’re on tour.
The other NY guest is a surprise but is a legend who invented the term electroclash (all you electro fans should know by now!), and has worked with RuPaul, Amanda Lepore, Princess Superstar, Perez Hilton and more. He’s Fierce with a capital F New York electro royalty, plus local hero Matt Vaughan, all for the bargain price of $5. Doors open at 10pm.