DNA Magazine - - CONTENT -


Har­bour Party is al­ways my Mardi Gras stand­out event. The sur­round­ings, the vibe and the people re­ally show­case how we Aus­tralians live and party. I will never for­get the feel­ing of the first time I at­tended. Be­ing sur­rounded by my close mates, the sounds, the en­ergy and the iconic land­marks of Syd­ney as the back­drop. The sun set be­hind the bridge and the mu­sic took off. The whole crowd came to­gether, boys em­braced and you couldn’t wipe the smile of ex­cite­ment off any­one’s face. It was a mo­ment and feel­ing that brings me back ev­ery year.


My Mardi Gras mo­ment was in 2008 when I first moved to Syd­ney from Canada. I was still try­ing to meet people when some friends in­vited me to join a float for the Pa­rade. It in­volved sev­eral re­hearsals to nail our dance rou­tine but when the big day came, it was sur­real. I had never seen so many cam­era flashes or so many people scream­ing in de­light watch­ing us. The Pa­rade went by so quickly I was left want­ing more. Good thing we went to the Mardi Gras Party right af­ter­wards to burn our ex­cess en­ergy!


Re­cently mov­ing from Lon­don, my first ex­po­sure to Mardi Gras was be­ing cast for The Party video as “Wa­ter­melon Boy”. I didn’t know what to ex­pect. On ar­rival the door was opened by some­one in an out­landish fox out­fit and I en­tered into flash­ing lights, drag queens swap­ping heels, oiled mus­cle boys and the oc­ca­sional fox! The shoot with Elvis Di Fazio was fun and sticky and ev­ery­one was ex­tremely friendly… es­pe­cially see­ing I dropped my kit and got frisky with a wa­ter­melon!


Last year was an ex­tra spe­cial for me. Not only was it a con­fi­dence boost­ing/test­ing day, be­ing pushed up Ox­ford Street wear­ing a leather G string and be­ing screamed at by thou­sands of people, it was also the first time my boyfriend said “I love you.” So that’s the rea­son I was smil­ing so much as Court­ney Act and the amaz­ing dancers were per­form­ing Marry The Night at Tay­lor Square. I will never for­get it.


I was for­tu­nate enough to be able to par­tic­i­pate in the mak­ing of the Mardi Gras Party video which turned out spec­tac­u­lar. I also made the ac­quain­tance of many colourful, in­ter­est­ing, and fan­tas­tic in­di­vid­u­als. I have had a num­ber of note­wor­thy ex­pe­ri­ences with Mardi Gras over the past four years, in­clud­ing march­ing in the Pa­rade, help­ing out in the med­i­cal tents and mak­ing the video. But the best mo­ment hap­pened this year when I found out my quiet and of­ten­times in­fu­ri­at­ingly con­ser­va­tive fa­ther shared the video on his Face­book wall when it was re­leased. It al­most brought a tear to my eye. Thank you, Dad!


I’ve grown up a few times in a few dif­fer­ent cities in the world and faced tri­als in each of them. The past year in Syd­ney, I’ve strug­gled to find my place in the com­mu­nity. Through modelling for Mardi Gras I’ve un­ex­pect­edly found a fam­ily where I fit and have a place. We have come to know each other and re­spect each other’s crazi­ness know­ing that is what makes each of us unique and, af­ter all, isn’t that what Mardi Gras is all about? If you’re new to the scene and it’s hard at first and you read this, know that it does get bet­ter. Some­times I need to be re­minded of that, too. So my Mardi Gras mo­ment is meet­ing my Mardi Gras fam­ily. I’m for­tu­nate to have had you all en­ter my life.

Left to right: An­dreas, Anthony, John­nie, Jeremy,Jake and (kneel­ing) Dale.

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