Words By: Guy Webster
This year marks the 40th Anniversary of Darwin Festival: a 18-night celebration of all that the northern city has to offer. Created in the wake of a 1974 cyclone that decimated the community, the Darwin Festival epitomised the strength and vibrancy of the people that make Darwin the cultural powerhouse that it is. While they’ve since shaken the festival’s original name (Bougainvillea Festival), they’ve kept its community spirit. And this year, this community spirit is coming out swinging. There’ll be champagne-laced cabarets, acrobatic daredevils, Cambodian folktales, classic Opera and stan-up performances destined to rival even the best ab-workout.
Over less than three weeks you can dive into the hilarious world of ABC’s Tom Gleeson, bow to the vocal stylings of enigmatic vocalist, Mojo Juju; live your best bourgeois life with Opera Australia’s Madame Butterfly; gawk at the almost-too flexible (and too sexy) stylings of the Gatsby-esq Blanc de Blanc Encore or just eat your way through the incredible range of mouth-watering goodies available at the festival.
There’s some incredible stuff to choose from but it really is the event’s community spirit that draws in 105,000 peeps every year. This year also marks the 13th Anniversary of the Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair, an exciting program that partners with over 70 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community art centres to bring an incredible range of upcoming art pieces. Bangarra Dance Theatre, a diverse company focused on exploring passionate storytelling and cultural histories, is also celebrating its 30th Anniversary with a magnetic performance, Bangarra: 30 years of sixty five thousand.
It’s literally anniversary after anniversary with this festival I swear, meaning that its going to be filled with an electrifying energy that you just don’t want to miss, honestly.
Plus Sydney is too damn cold please get me the fuck out of here.