Darwin Festival 2022 heats up Winter with a scorching lineup
Over 18 gloriously tropical days and nights, Darwin Festival 2022 will excite and entice with a rich program of events spanning music, theatre, comedy, dance, cabaret, visual arts and family fun.
Running from 4-21 August, Australia’s hottest winter arts festival has unveiled its full program, brimming with Top End talent, some of the hottest interstate and international artists, and an eclectic mix of performances guaranteed to thrill Territorians and visitors alike.
Epic live music gigs will light up the Territory’s favourite open-air venue, the INPEX Sunset Stage in Festival Park, with the likes of Emma Donovan and The Putbacks, Arlo Parks, Jaguar Jonze, Alex The Astronaut, Confidence Man, and more taking to the stage. Comic virtuoso and musical genius Tim Minchin will also make his Darwin debut at the Darwin Amphitheatre as part of this year’s Festival.
Theatre works featured in the program include the layered and compelling Meremere, an autobiographical multimedia dance work from New Zealand that follows the inspirational life of critically acclaimed dancer and performer Rodney Bell, and Maureen: Harbinger of Death, a celebration of the wisdom of female elders.
Dance lovers will enjoy TWO, a joyful celebration of trust, as two friends test the power hierarchy inherent in the Indian Kathak tradition through dance and dialogue. Waŋa sees NT Dance Company fuse traditional lore with contemporary movement to create an evocative new dance work. Finally, The Australian Ballet’s Regional Tour Ballet Gala will bring the joy of classical dance to the Top End in a dazzling display of ballet. A highlight of the program will be Swan Lake Variations, a tribute to the beauty of the best-loved composer of ballet music, Tchaikovsky. This never-before-seen piece has been especially choreographed for the Regional Tour Ballet Gala by former Artistic Director David McAllister.
Mini Festival fans will be spoilt for choice with a range of events catering to families. Take advantage of the stunning dry season weather with two epic picnics, as the much-loved City of Darwin Teddy Bears’ Picnic returns to the Esplanade for a day of fun, while the lawns of the Museum and Art Gallery of NT transform for a Prehistoric Picnic, where ancient megafauna roam. The creators of The Bookbinder return with their darkly comic and inventive one-man show Tröll, whileshadow puppetry, swinging Irish music and stunning physical performance bring to life the story of The Boy Who Talked to Dogs.
On the final weekend of the Festival, a truly unique spectacle will illuminate the waters off Jervois Park as 160 drones take flight for balarr inyiny. This breathtaking, choreographed sky show, led by Larrakia artist Jenna Lee, will transform the coastline with ancient stories of place and Larrakia culture, brought to life through LED drone lighting, 3D animation and a cinematic soundscape. This free, immersive light performance will be held over three nights and is a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience for audiences young and old.
Darwin Festival Artistic Director Felix Preval said, “Some of the incredible projects in this year’s Darwin Festival program have been in the works for years – delayed, postponed or imprisoned by the pandemic. Others are spilling hot from the lips of artists, responding to the present moment. Some bring stories thousands of years in the telling to Festival audiences for the very first time. All are as bold and urgent as anything we’ve ever presented.”
Darwin Festival will run from 4-21 August. To see the full line up and purchase tickets visit darwinfestival.org.au