Australia’s Arts Events

MONA FOMA, Hobart, TAS. © Remi Chauvin & MONA

Australia’s Arts Events

Throughout the year Australian cities present a series of major arts festivals, showcasing local and international theatre, dance, visual arts, music, food and wine. Join Sydneysiders and film lovers from around the world at the Sydney International Film Festival. Or see the Sydney Harbour lit up with opera performances and light shows. Be immersed in culture at the Perth International Arts Festival. See the latest avant-garde performers and artworks at the MONA FOMA or Melbourne and Adelaide Fringe Festivals. From the contemporary to the classical; from flowers to fringe, there is an art event to suit all styles and tastes.

Melbourne Fringe Festival
Melbourne Fringe Festival

Melbourne Fringe Festival

Melbourne, Victoria
September - October

The Melbourne Fringe Festival presents the work of thousands of artists in a diverse range of contemporary art forms. The festival has been running for more than 30 years and is a highlight on the Victorian arts calendar. Recent festivals have attracted more than quarter of a million people and presented the work of more than 3000 artists in events, performances and exhibitions in venues and locations across Victoria. Victoria has long been known as ‘the state of the arts’. Visit other exhibitions at the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Museum and Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Federation Square.

Commonwealth Park, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory
13 September – 12 October 2014

Canberra’s famously frosty winters provide the perfect nurturing conditions for the million tulips and annuals that bloom right on cue each spring in a park overlooking Lake Burley Griffin. Once a daytime-only event, the Floriade festival now includes NightFest, with cutting-edge light installations and entertainment over five magical evenings in September.

SALA Festival
SALA Festival

SALA Festival

Adelaide, South Australia
August

Over the past 15 years the SALA Festival has celebrated and promoted the diverse talents of South Australian Living Artists. Recognised as Australia's most innovative, community based visual arts festival, more than 3000 artists join in unique collaborations and exhibitions with more than 500 wineries, cafes, bars, galleries and unique and creative spaces throughout metropolitan and regional South Australia. Admission to events and venues during the SALA Festival is free, and is a not to be missed state-wide celebration of South Australia’s visual arts. Take time to explore South Australia’s nearby wine regions and other historic attractions while you’re there.

Melbourne International Art Fair
Melbourne International Art Fair

Melbourne International Art Fair

Melbourne, Victoria
August

Melbourne Art Fair is an exhibition of leading contemporary art, presented by more than 80 selected national and international galleries. The biennial event features paintings, sculpture, photography, installation and multi-media art works from over 900 artists. There are exhibitions of contemporary art from across the Asia Pacific region; and free lectures and forums with artists and curators. The four-day event attracts around 30,000 visitors. Melbourne Art Fair offers visitors a chance to view and purchase quality artwork by some of Australia’s and the world’s well-known artists as well as view works by a new generation of exciting emerging artists.

Adelaide Cabaret Festival
Adelaide Cabaret Festival

Adelaide Cabaret Festival

Adelaide, South Australia
July

Adelaide Cabaret Festival is a major event in the international arts calendar. Since it started in 2001, the festival has become the most comprehensive cabaret festival in the world, earning a reputation for showcasing the best local, national and international artists in cabaret performance. Performances range from comedy, satire, contemporary, rock, pop, blues, soul, swing and gypsy jazz to the Broadway classics over the two week-long festival. Acts feature some of the world’s leading cabaret singer and songwriters and living legends. The festival features more than 30 performances staged in both intimate cabaret venues and the Adelaide Festival Centre.

City of Perth Winter Arts Season
City of Perth Winter Arts Season

City of Perth Winter Arts Season

Perth, Western Australia
June - August

Perth fills the Australian winter with colour, warmth and creative offerings from Western Australia’s leading arts organisations. The City of Perth Winter Arts Season continues to grow in numbers, diversity and international recognition. The season combines a world-class selection of events and performances including theatre, film, comedy, opera, literature, dance, visual arts, poetry, cabaret and a range of free and family events. There are more than 150 events from more than 60 participating arts organisations. Wine and dine in some of Perth’s high end restaurants and chic bars. Take the opportunity to explore Western Australia’s wine regions.

Sydney, New South Wales
May – June 2015

See Sydney in a sparkling new light during the annual Vivid Sydney. Each winter, the world’s best designers and artists transform the city. See stunning images projected onto Sydney Opera House, control the lights on the Harbour Bridge, play with interactive light sculptures throughout the city centre, experience great music and hear inspiring talks.

Sydney Film Festival
Sydney Film Festival

Sydney Film Festival

Sydney, New South Wales
June

Sydney Film Festival is one of the world's longest-running film festivals, and is a major event on the NSW cultural calendar. The 12-day festival screens more than 100 feature films, documentaries, short films and animation from more than 50 countries around the world and in almost as many languages. Films are shown at venues across the city, including the State Theatre, Event Cinemas George Street, Dendy Opera Quays and the Art Gallery of NSW. The official competition is endorsed by Federation Internationale des Associations de Producteurs de Films. The Travelling Film Festival of the Sydney Film Festival visits locations around the country throughout the year.

Melbourne Winter Masterpieces
Melbourne Winter Masterpieces

Melbourne Winter Masterpieces

Melbourne, Victoria
March - June

Melbourne Winter Masterpieces is the name for an annual series of major exhibitions during winter at Melbourne’s most renowned cultural venues. The exhibitions are sourced from the most prestigious galleries and institutions around the world and present exclusive art of the highest international standards. The event attracts high numbers of international and local visitors. Previous Melbourne Winter Masterpieces exhibitions have included works by Picasso, Dali, the European Masters, and exhibitions from the Guggenheim Collection. The exhibitions rotate every year to venues which include the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Museum and Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Sydney, NSW
27 March – 27 April 2015

Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour is not just an opera, it’s a complete night’s entertainment under the summer night sky. This unforgettable event includes Sydney’s iconic skyline as its backdrop. Arrive by water taxi, drink and dine in style at the pop-up bars and restaurants, then sit back in the tiered seats to take in the drama.

ENLIGHTEN
ENLIGHTEN

ENLIGHTEN

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory
March

ENLIGHTEN is part of the Canberra Festival and provides a new perspective on some of Australia’s most famous attractions through late night openings. Explore after hours exhibitions at the National Gallery of Australia; National Library of Australia and Questacon. Many of Canberra’s national buildings such as Parliament House are lit up in a dazzling light show by night. There are also live performances, tours and talks and exclusive dining experiences. Many of the ENLIGHTEN experiences are small and intimate events and tickets need to be purchased in advance. There are also many free events and entertainment for the whole family.

Adelaide Fringe
Adelaide Fringe

Adelaide Fringe

Adelaide, South Australia
March

Adelaide Fringe is an annual open-access arts festival run over four weeks in Adelaide during February and March. The open nature of Adelaide Fringe means that anyone with a show, exhibition or cultural event is able to register and be part of Australia’s largest arts event. The result is one of the most diverse arts festivals in the world, renowned for fresh ideas, spontaneity and fun. More the 4000 artists from around Australia and the world participate in more than 900 events from cabaret, comedy, circus, dance, film, theatre and music to visual art and design.

Perth International Arts Festival
Perth International Arts Festival

Perth International Arts Festival

Perth, Western Australia
February

Have the quintessential Perth summer experience at the Perth International Arts Festival. The festival teams Australia’s top artistic talents with big-name international artists at venues across the city. See cutting-edge plays and contemporary dance, dramatic classics and classical ballet. Listen to symphonies or see bands in the late-night festival bar. Attend artists’ talks and view a rich spectrum of visual arts in indoor and outdoor galleries. Watch films under the stars or indulge your love of writing, storytelling and ideas at the Perth Writers Festival. The week-long program features more than 100 literary events, including a dedicated day for children.

MONA FOMA
MONA FOMA

MONA FOMA

Hobart, Tasmania
January

MONA FOMA is a boutique cultural festival that offers locals and visitors to Tasmania a chance to experience internationally renowned performers and upcoming local acts. It is presented in conjunction with the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), in the magnificent setting of Tasmania’s historic waterfront. MONA has developed a reputation for presenting the world’s most thought-provoking contemporary art. Past performers have included artists such as Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, PJ Harvey; the Dresden Dolls and other cutting edge acts. The Moorilla winery is located upstairs from MONA and luxury accommodation is also available on the property.

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