Outgames opening ceremony set to shine
Ahead of this evening’s opening ceremony, Darwin Outgames creative director Alex Galeazzi tells GNN what’s in store for the punters.
With over 1000 athletes participating and a line-up of entertainment that incorporates indigenous dancers, a welcome to country and drag entertainers, the opening ceremony of the 3rd Asia Pacific Outgames looks set to deliver a unique affair.
Galeazzi has brought his experience as a theatre director to bear on the festivities, to ensure the minute that spectators and athletes enter the sports grounds they will be enveloped by a sense of the proceedings.
“Foremost on my mind is to welcome the athletes and celebrate, so the evening is very much in a dance party mode with elements of theatrics woven in,” Galeazzi tells GNN.
To kick off festivities, a Larrikia elder will open the event with a Welcome to Country.
“The welcome will be accompanied by images of sacred sites from the area and by composed music using the didgeridoo and sounds from the northern territory,” explains Galeazzi. “Then the athletes will enter through a smoking ceremony, so they are spiritually purified as they enter the oval.”
Galeazzi describes Darwin as “beautifully” diverse, and says the opening ceremony will reflect this wonderful diversity.
“We’ve created a really great underscore of gay anthems for the athletes to parade around to. And we have two great MCs, Lisa Pellegrino from local ABC and Daniel Bourchier from SKY News – and they spark off each other really well and they will be introducing each team as it comes through.”
Galeazzi says there will be many more surprises on the night, including a drag performance from Throb nightclub favourites, and a tribute to LGBTI athletes, past and present. He hopes to pull a few heartstrings with this element. “I hope it will be quite stirring,” he says.
He’s also assembled a group of cultural dancers from around the Darwin area to perform a new interpretation of ‘I Like to Move It’. He promises this will get audience moving and shaking their booties, just like the Chooky dancers.
With the opening ceremony only a couple of hours away, Galeazzi says everything is in place for a memorable event.
“We’re going to be out under a beautiful night sky and I think the energy of the athletes and performers and the crowd will bring the essence we need to lift the roof off the oval and make it that celebratory inclusive event we hope it will be.”
The 3rd Asia Pacific Outgames opening ceremony takes place on May 10 from 7pm – 10pm at The Gardens. Find out more about the outgames at 3apog.com.au