The Broken Heel Festival is a quintessentially Australian event held in the Western NSW mining town of Broken Hill since 2015. The festival’s roots are framed around the 1994 film ‘The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert‘ the Australian road comedy film written and directed by Stephen Elliot. The film follows two drag queens played by Hugo Weaving and Guy Pearce and a transgender woman, played by Terence Stamp. They journey across the Australian outback from Sydney to Alice Springs in a tour bus that they have named “Priscilla.

The three day event features venues in and around Broken Hill, the Frock on and Frock off, Drag on Drag Street Parade, Saturday night Shindig at the Palace, the Silverton Day Out and of course the Sunday Sesh followed by Vonnie’s poxy Concert. This is a spectacle worth a look even in a year dominated by COVID, which is the best reason to ensure its on the travel calendar for 2021.

Broken Hill is an outback city steeped in history with a mining and agricultural heritage. The city has claimed the event and made it their own. The success of such events in outback towns is breathing life blood into the regions, proving to detractors just what is possible in 2021 and beyond.

Mike Briggs, Hobart TAS. May 2021

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