LGBTQ+ Programming at SXSW 2023

Check out some LGBTQ+ Programming you don’t want to miss at SXSW 2023!


10th Annual Big Queer Kickoff Party – Once an unofficial gathering during SXSW of the queer community, and now THE official party where everyone gathers to celebrate the QUEER culture of Austin and SXSW. Produced by the Austin LGBT Chamber of Commerce, this is the 10th anniversary, and as such, there will be some special surprises. OUTatInc has decided to play with us, and are bringing along their friends Landa Plenty and the legendary artist/producer/DJ Cazwell who will be on deck! Bring your best fashionz, friends, and smiles. Lots of other surprises await!

We’re Here, We’re Queer — LGBTQIA+ Meet Up – Alicia Roth Weigel (intersex author, activist and partner at The Pride Fund) and “The Cookie Gays”, Luis Gramajo and Hans Schrei (founders at Wunderkeks, gay immigrants / entrepreneurs / multi-hyphenates) have teamed up with the goal of creating a “Safe Space” to escape the craziness of SXSW… Come as you are to this official SXSW “kiki” -no code switching needed! – If you’re looking to have meaningful conversations and make authentic connections or just recharge your fabulous energy at a drag show by Austin’s very own Queen, Vylette Ward: please drop by and slay with us.


The Austin LGBT Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a full day of Official SXSW LGBTQ+ Business Discussions on March 11, 2023. Join us as members of the Austin LGBT Chamber come together to discuss the integral role that the LGBTQ+ community plays in advocating for change while contributing to the creative ecosystem that is so needed in today’s world. Artists, designers, filmmakers and musicians will chat about their work, the current state of Texas and national politics, and how they continue to thrive and prosper throughout. 

  • 1:15 Queer Representation in Film
  • 2:15 The Business of Drag
  • 3:15 Advocacy through Art

Don’t Be a Drag, Just Be a Queen – 2022 saw a record number of anti-LGBTQ bills introduced across the country, and we’ve already seen one Texas lawmaker announce that he will introduce a bill to ban youth from attending drag shows next year. The heated political discourse has led to threats against Pride celebrations and drag shows around the world. We know these debates are negatively impacting LGBTQ youth — and that access to affirming spaces and representation is crucial to mental health. Amid these relentless attacks on the LGBTQ community, top drag queens from RuPaul’s Drag Race will join The Trevor Project to discuss drag’s historical roots and cultural significance today, why promoting self-expression is so important, and how we can all help create a more accepting world.

Perspectives on the Corporatization of Pride – Join the It Gets Better Project for a presentation about the evolving role brands play in the fight for LGBTQ+ equality — and their impact (both positive and negative) on the queer youth experience. This session will offer insights from case studies, supplemental research, and LGBTQ+ young people themselves to inform how brands can authentically connect with LGBTQ+ youth in an increasingly complex, and politically charged, environment.


Caleb De Casper – A Pride in Local Music veteran. From the horror cabaret and glam rock of his past to his current dark synthpop sound, Austin-based performer Caleb De Casper always brings a stunning in-your-face theatricality to his music and live shows. The classically trained pianist and vocalist stalks the stage in avant-garde gowns, vivid glam-on-acid makeup and the ever-present stiletto heels, confidently declaring that masculinity comes in many different forms.


The 2023 SXSW Film & TV Festival will feature a number LGBTQ+ stories with wholly unique perspectives that take a lens to the importance of identity, found family, togetherness, and the strength of queerness. This year’s lineup includes programming across a wide spectrum of genres and topics: from queer music history, to incisive (but often humorous) takes on issues we face as queer people on a daily basis.

Click here for more information about all of the Austin LGBT Chamber of Commerce Official SXSW 2023 events.