The Melbourne Festival program has just been released. Once again, for 18 days this October it will unify, divide, enchant and entice our city with some of the most colourful, bright and brilliant acts from around the world. Artistic Director Jonathan Holloway describing the selection of this years program as having
“Searched the world for the most courageous, visionary and ambitious artists: artists who are actively taking on the biggest subjects with flair, excitement and drive. We have drawn together as many of them as possible to create a blockbuster that attempts to remind us all what humankind is capable of.”
The 2017 line up has something for everyone and TAGG will again this year be bringing our readers the very best of the festival. To kick things off, here’s our top 10 picks.
For the fifth year, Melbourne Festival opens with the celebration of the ground on which we stand and the people whose ancestors walked it before our time. Performed by the clans of the Kulin Nation, through Tanderrum we acknowledge the lore of creator spirit Bunjil and pay their respects to the vibrant and living culture of this land.
Federation Square Wednesday the 4th of October at 6.30pm.
Tom Waits’ Black Rider: The Casting Of The Magic Bullets
It maybe hard for one to go wrong with an opera penned by Tom Waits that has on it’s bill both Meow Meow and Paul Capsis, these two veteran performers have and continue to delight Australian Audiences. Presented by Malthouse Theatre this work continues on a bit of a trend for gothic theatre that has emerged in Melbourne and should prove to be an impactful performance.
Playing at the Malthouse Theatre from Friday the 15th of October.
All The Sex I Have Ever Had
As part of Melbourne Festival 2016, Hair Cuts By Children placed scissors in the hands of school kids and allowing them to play barber for some of the more intrepid Melbourne Festival patrons. This year the same creative team Mammalian Diving Reflex brings us something a little different. With Seniors taking the seat to talk about sex, life and longevity. Because let’s face it, we all do it and it certainly isn’t a new invention.
Playing at Arts Centre Melbourne, Playhouse from Thursday the 12th of October.
Bangsokol: A Requiem For Cambodia
Over two million Cambodians, were in the 1970’s, murdered. But in the face of this genocide and over the proceeding 40 years, a resilient and strong community has grown. Giving voice to a country which is still reeling from such unimaginable events. Spanning song, film, dance, voice and orchestra this is the first major symphonic work to commemorate the atrocities that played out in Cambodia
Playing at Arts Centre Melbourne Hamer Hall on Friday the 13th & Saturday the 14th of October.
Tree Of Codes
If any performance this festival promises to deliver “Epic” it has to be this one. Having wowed audiences across the world, Tree Of Codes finally touches down in Australia premiering as part of this years Melbourne Festival. Between dance, light and structure, this is the work of three of the world most resplendent artists Wayne McGregor, Olafur Eliasson, and Jamie xx.
Playing at Arts Centre Melbourne, State Theatre from Tuesday the 17th of October.
Now settled into their new digs at Temperance Hall, BallatlLab under the guise of Phillip Adams, for this years festival gives us Ever. A transformative, painterly expression of vibrant minimalism and chromatic Romanticism morphing Shaker and Quaker roots and nostalgic tropes of the American West.
Playing at Temperance Hall from Friday the 6th of October.
Korean artist Ayoung Kim’s work is for the first time presented in Australia through dual exhibitions, Porosity Valley, Portable Holes and In This Vessel We Shall Be Kept. To walk through an exhibition by this artists akin to taking a voyage across dark and eerie waters, where real events rub shoulders with myth and memories are made mutable.
Exhibiting at Collingwood Arts Precinct, The Gym and the Royal Botanical Gardens, Mueller Hall Herbarium from Friday the 6th of October.
A chance to see one of China’s most epic stories reinvented as one of this century’s most ravishing spectacles. The work of renowned Chinese choreographer and dancer Yang Liping this is her vision of the climactic battle between Chu and Han armies; an encounter that changed the course of Chinese history.
Playing at Arts Centre Melbourne, State Theatre from Thursday the 5th of October.
A riotous work for all ages, Dark Circus makes its Australian debut for Melbourne Festival audiences. Combining shadow puppetry, live illustration and hand drawn animation they present a scripted piece that is never the same twice. The resulting effect, is something close to “cinema without film”.
Playing at the Malthouse Theatre from the 5th of October.
Taylor Mac: A 24 Decade History Of Popular Music
From 1776 to 2016 this is a decade-by-decade account of American history and popular culture, told by the unmissable Taylor Mac. Re told from a radical, queer and unapologetic view point, these stories are often forgotten, dismissed, or buried. Part celebration, part exorcism, all party, this extravaganza will take its place as one of the most spectacular moments Melbourne has ever witnessed.
Playing at Forum Theatre and Hamer Hall Arts Centre Melbourne from Thursday the 5th of October.
With this being just the tip of the iceberg, head to the Melbourne Festival website to find out about many of other great offerings this years festival promises local audiences.