Rainbow Edition: Celebrating IDAHOBIT Day

30 years ago - on May 17, 1990 - the World Health Organization removed homosexuality from the Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems. International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia & Transphobia (IDAHOBIT) celebrates LGBTIQ people globally, and raises awareness for the work still needed. This years IDAHOBIT theme is "Breaking the Silence". We are proud to support the many Aussies whose work and actions support the visibility and human rights of all LGBTIQ persons globally.

So whether you want to get your drag on with the Aussie classic Priscilla or host a rainbow night-in, this edition of Down Under Escape has got you covered!


Cancel your plans (oh wait...), ok so pass the popcorn and settle in for a movie marathon this IDAHOBIT weekend. Fun fact: In 1969 a US director, Frank Brittain, shot The Set in Sydney, the first-ever Australian feature film with homosexuality as a central theme.

  • The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994) - It's not easy being a drag queen in the outback! This iconic Aussie classic follows two drag queens and a transsexual who buy a run-down old bus, 'Priscilla', and set out on a road trip to perform cabaret across the Australian desert. Available on YouTube or Vudu.
  • The Set (1970) - Australia's first ever LGBT film. Paul Lawrence is a working class man who dates Cara, sells shirts at a Sydney department store, and dreams of attending art school. Paul finds a creative escape working as a set designer for theatre luminary and socialite Marie. Rejecting her sexual advances, Paul instead winds up falling into bed with rich boy Tony. Available on Amazon.
  • Head On (1998) - This edgy drama follows a 19 year old Greek Australian, who struggles with his ethnic and sexual identity which leads to a wild, 24 hour odyssey.Available on Amazon Prime or Netflix
  • Holding the Man (2015) - An Australian romantic drama film adapted from Timothy Conigrave's 1995 memoir of the same name. Tim and John fell in love while teenagers at their prestigious Catholic all-boys high school in Melbourne 1974. Their romance endured for 15 years to laugh in the face of everything life threw at it - the separations, the discrimination, the temptations, the jealousies and the losses. Available on Amazon Prime, Netflix or YouTube.
  • Also see Remembering the Man (2018) - This documentary celebrates the romance between lovers Tim Conigrave and John Caleo as well as venturing into darker territory, investigating the Aids pandemic that hit their generation and exposing all-too-recent examples of bigotry in Australian media and culture. Available on Amazon Prime.
  • 52 Tuesdays (2013) - 16-year-old Billie's reluctant path to independence is accelerated when her mother reveals plans for gender transition and their time together becomes limited to Tuesday afternoons. Filmed over the course of a year, once a week, every week (only on Tuesdays) these unique filmmaking rules bring a rare authenticity to this emotionally charged story of desire, responsibility and transformation. Available on Amazon Prime or YouTube
  • The Getting of Wisdom (1978) - Told with a delicate blend of satire and nostalgia, this award-winning coming-of-age tale introduces one of Australian literature's most beloved characters to the screen, Laura Tweedle Rambothan. (Based on the immortal best seller by Henry Handel Richardson.) Available on Amazon Prime or YouTube.
  • Love and Other Catastrophes (1996) - A fast, funny excursion into the world of Australian college students in the mid-'90s. Available on Amazon Prime.
  • Monster Pies (2013) - When Mike's English teacher pairs him up for a class assignment with the new kid William, Mike can't believe his luck. As the two spend time working together on a monster movie version of the Bard's classic tale, they soon realise their feelings for one another may be more powerful than either is truly ready for. Available on Amazon Prime.
  • Gayby Baby (2015) - This documentary observes the lives of four children whose parents are either gay or lesbian, and explores the ways in which growing up as a 'gayby' has affected them. Told from the point of view of the kids this doco is a living, moving portrait of same-sex families that offers a refreshingly honest picture of what really counts in modern life. Available on iTunes or Vudu.
  • Hannah Gadsby Nanette (2018) - Australian comic Hannah Gadsby reshapes standard stand-up by pairing punchlines with personal revelations on gender, sexuality and childhood turmoil. Available on Netflix.
  • Queer Eye for the Straight Guy - The Fab Five journeyed Down Under to make over a local farmer named George. A local farmer in his fifties with scruff and a cowboy hat permanently affixed to his head; Van Ness aptly describes him as an “Aussie Marlboro Man". His son, Levi, nominated him for the series, hoping that a makeover will help his dad get enough confidence to go back out on the dating scene:​​​​​​


Let your rainbow flag fly as you dance to these iconic Australian Pride anthems.

Read and Listen

  • LISTEN The Love and Luck podcast - A slice of life queer romance story with a touch of magic.
  • LISTEN Queerstories - enjoy the book and podcast - a collection of stories from across Australia's LGBTI community.
  • READ Amelia Westlake - a novel for young adult readers (and soon to be film!)
  • READ Colouring the Rainbow - 22 First Nations people reveal their inner reflections on queer identity.
  • READ Growing up Queer in the Australia - edited by one of this years IDAHOBIT Champions, Benjamin Law.
  • READ The Kids are Alright - a review of decades of research shows children of same-sex couples are doing just as well as kids of heterosexual couples, but it’s homophobic discrimination that can put them at risk of harm.
  • READ The Lost Arabs - Award-winning Arab Australian poet Omar Sakr presents a pulsating collection of poetry that interrogates the bonds and borders of family, faith, queerness, and nationality.
  • READ How to Be a Big Strong Man - Author Samuel Leighton-Dore knows that masculinity is a myth. A big, dumb, silly, poorly constructed myth! This Australian picture book pokes light-hearted fun at the very notion of manhood, by offering an updated guide to masculinity.
  • READ Kindred: 12 Queer #LoveOzYA Stories - Twelve of Australia's best writers from the LGBTQ+ community are brought together in this ground-breaking collection of YA short stories.
  • READ Queer Icons from Gay to Z: Activists, Artists & Trailblazers - This illustrated picture book by Peter Boyle is an alphabetic celebration of queer activists, artists, comedians, writers, philosophers, musicians, poets and Olympic gold medallists.
  • READ Some Assembly Required - Seventeen-year-old author Arin Andrews shares all the hilarious, painful, and poignant details of undergoing gender reassignment as a high school student in this winning memoir.
  • READ Ted Blog How Hannah Gadsby broke comedy - Hannah Gadsby's groundbreaking special Nanette broke comedy. In a talk about truth and purpose, the  shares three ideas and three contradictions.


  • Your one-stop-shop for all things IDAHOBIT
  • Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives
  • Read Australia's longest running LGBTI publication - Sydney star Observer
  • 55 Uppity - celebrating older LGBTI Aussie women
  • TransHub, a digital information and resource platform for all trans and gender diverse (TGD) people. This platform is an initiative from ACON, NSW’s leading health organisation specialising in community health, inclusion and HIV responses for people of diverse sexualities and genders. TransHub offers the information that many needed, but didn’t have access to growing up
  • PFlag - Keeping families together by acceptance and greater knowledge.
  • Q Life - Provides Australia-wide anonymous, LGBTI peer support and referral for people wanting to talk about a range of issues including sexuality, identity, gender, bodies, feelings or relationships.
  • In case you're about to slide into someones dms... your go-to list of Pride-related emojis
  • And finally, get your pronouns en pointe with this helpful guide​​​: