MELT: Festival of Queer Arts and Culture

MELT-Festival-of-Queer-Arts-and-Culture-2021From solidarity through storytelling to confetti-covered cabaret, MELT: Festival of Queer Arts and Culture has torn the wrapping off a spectacular program of events and performances as it enters its second week at the Brisbane Powerhouse.

Spanning genres including cabaret, music, theatre and visual arts and starring an eclectic mix of home-grown heroes and festival favourites, highlights of the program include the fabulous Reuben Kaye, declaring The Butch is Back in the award-winning Australian comedian and singer’s sensational new show on Thursday 27 May.

With an all-star boylesque and drag cast, Showguys pays tribute to the 1995 cult classic film Showgirls on Friday 28 May, while the Killer Queens return with five ferocious females performing interpretations of songs by Freddie Mercury, with a sprinkling of Bowie and Prince, on Saturday 29 May.

The Studio performance space hosts a diverse program of world premieres including the thought-provoking People of Colours and storytelling piece, Queer as Flux from 27 – 29 May.

The party continues with free events including Spill the Tea – a chat show hosted by Richie LeStrange and Christina Draguilera on 28 May on the Turbine Platform, and a special MELT Livespark event on Sunday 30 May featuring Nikolaine Martin, Umbriel and Andrea Kirwin.

The annual MELT Portrait Prize continues until 13 June and runs in conjunction with Silenced in the Shadows by Dan Molloy – a series of strikingly raw photographs portraying the emotional battles faced by many LGBTIQ+ Pacific Islander and Indigenous people.

Brisbane Powerhouse Artistic Director Kris Stewart said the premier arts and cultural venue had provided a home for the LGBTIQ+ community since it first opened its doors 21 years ago.

“MELT belongs authentically to the local community and is our most creatively diverse event; from big and bright large-scale works to intimate, honest and deeply personal shows,” he said.

“We are so excited to leave 2020 in our wake and have a lot of fun with a venue-wide celebration of queer arts and culture that pushes boundaries, explores unique art forms and shares important stories,” said Mr Stewart.

Returning for its sixth year, Queensland’s most exciting celebration of LGBTIQ+ arts and culture, programmed by Guest Director James Lees, gives the community an excuse to kick up its heels after COVID-19 forced MELT’s cancellation in 2020.

The 2021 MELT: Festival of Queer Arts and Culture continues at the Brisbane Powerhouse until 30 May. For more information and to view full program, visit: for details.

Image: MELT: Festival of Queer Arts and Culture – courtesy of Brisbane Powerhouse