Bringing more than the Sunshine and good vibes to the Central Coast, Coastal Twist LGBTIQA+ Arts & Culture Festival last week offered a welcome respite from previous 2 years of COVID, rain and bad news stories putting Arts, Culture and Equality front and centre for 7 days with 15 events.
Billed as far more than a LGBTIQ Arts & Culture Festival the diversity celebration closing “Coastie Carnie Fair day” alone attracted a little over 9,000 people conservatively and was an experience at the intersection of fashion, celebrity, music and art with an almost 40% increase in audience the initial pilot festival which attracted over 6,500.
Proudly supported through the NSW Governments Regional events acceleration Fund the festival attracted a 50% Central Coast audience against an equal 50% visitors from across regional NSW, QLD, Victoria, ACT, QLD Tasmania and South Australia with all ticketed events completely sold out leaving no room for door sales.
The festival continues amassing huge support following amongst local businesses from Wyong to Terrigal and Woy Woy to long Jetty all displaying their involvement though their “Be the Change” Window displays, participation in events and as stall holders as the Coasts most welcoming and open nature is allowed to shine.
The festival also held the largest youth (12 – 17) dance party the PCYC had hosted with over 120 registrations, the night was a partnering of Headspace, Naughty Noodle Fun Haus “YAAS” (young authentic and social) program and PCYC.
“All cultures, all gender expressions, all abilities, ages, shapes and sizes – this is who we are, Coastal Twist Festival is a community-built festival based on all of us celebrating the diversity that is life together – everyone can relate to that and it is our hope that everyone can celebrate it!” said Festival Director, Glitta Supernova.
“Central Coast has a cheeky, fun, open, heart that’s been fighting for a very long time to have its own unique identity, those shiny expensive outside/outsourced campaigns and multigenerational strong hold over who will be visible and participate in local community life and who cannot no longer fly, as communities, connect, build voice and work together for a sustainable and equitable future, a happier, healthier and more welcoming Central Coast, as much as this is a celebration, what’s come out of the week is stories of healing.”
Many artists performed new or unreleased songs during their sets, international headliners, butted against local emerging Naughty Noodle artists and Naughty Noodle Intern and Central Coast Youth of the year Jack Williams was announced as the newest member of the House of Slé, the Sydney based artist based collective, the leading performance group, ballroom house in Australia.
Poised for success with a strong track record Coastal Twist is already enshrined as a unique & much loved “original quirky Australiana” vibrant regional experience that’s not to be missed.
“It’s very difficult to gaze around at mountains and trees in every direction, 2 steps from the beach and feel completely unmoved, the skyline was simply magical, particularly when accented by the festival’s entertainment, audiences, and art installations,” said Glitta Supernova.
The 2022 Coastal Twist Festival ran 27 September to 3 October. For more information, visit: www.coastaltwist.org.au for details.
Image: Ruby Slippers performs at the Coastal Twist Fair Day – photo by Lisa Haymes