QLD Tourism & Local Councils Spent $1.2M To Get Elton John To The Top End

Have you heard the good word? Sir Elton John is comin’ back to Australia! But what’s this? He’s conscientiously avoiding all the major cities in favour of far north Queensland centres… Cairns and Mackay?!
It’s likely that you, like me, are dealing with a lot of emotions right now – emotions like: Why? How? What? and, Huh? 
But we can now shed at least a little bit of light on this baffling development: Our Mate Elton is going to be copping a $1.2m pay check for the shows. At least.
Thanks to loose-lipped Cairns councillor Richie Bates, we now know that the Cairns council has dropped $300,000 on luring everyone’s favourite sequinned uncle to their Cazalys Stadium. Mackay is rumoured to have done the same. On top of that, Tourism and Events Queensland is believed to have pitched in a further $600,000, making the full figure – before ticket and merchandise sales, before the bloke even sets foot on humid, north Queensland soil – just over a cool million. 
Pair this with the fact that apparently the Cairns councillors had been keeping the deal secret with the code name “Project X” and we’re well into the kind of absurdist territory that regional Australian centres are so comfortable with. (Remember the Toowoomba porn ban?)
Elton is expected to draw 12,000 people to his Cairns event. According to Cairns Mayor Bob Manning, the ivory-tickling genius has a proclivity for only visiting tour destinations once, ruling all the major cities in Australia out for this particular trip. 
He’s also rumoured to enjoy a spot of barra fishing, and the sheer charm of imagining Sir Elton John standing on a boat in a legionnaire’s hat and star-shaped sunnies, angling for a big one, is enough (in my opinion) to justify the price tag alone.

Source: Cairns Post.
Image: Denise Truscello / Getty.