Australia’s Adelaide Festival opens (Mar. 3 – 19, 2017)
Founded in 1960, the Adelaide Festival is the largest comprehensive arts festival in southern Australia. Held annually since 2012, its two and a half week program features a wide variety of arts, from theater, music dance, literature and visual arts to works for children and more. Until last year, the artistic director was the founder of London’s alternative music festival Meltdown, David Sefton. From this year, Sefton is joined by the former co-directors of Sydney’s Belvoir St. Theatre, Neil Armfield and Rachel Healy
Among the main invited works for the theater program A production of Richard III by German director Thomas Ostermeier, a production of The Encounter directed by Britain’s Simon McBurney Also, among the works from Australia, attention focuses on the Sydney Theatre Company’ production of The Secret River, a work dealing with the birth of the Australian nation.
On the dance program are works including the first performance in Australian Jérôme Bel’s Gala, which has toured to numerous countries around the world. Also, the L-E-V company led by former Batsheva Dance Company principal dancer Sharon Eyel presents Killer Pig, and the Vancouver, Canada-based Electric Theatre Company presents Kidd Pivot.
The music program takes a slight change in direction from the primarily experimental type works that dominated the program until last year to feature a production of George Frideric Handel’s opera Saul directed by Barrie Kosky that had its world premiere at the Glyndebourne Festival in 2015, and a performance of Peter and the Wolf by the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, among others.
Furthermore, the Kids Weekend program and the Adelaide Writers’ Week program were also held during the festival run.
Believing in the potential for an arts festival in Adelaide through his involvement in the South Australia national theatre movement, journalist Sir Lloyd Dumas and Adelaide University music professor John Bishop enlisted the support of influential citizens to launch the festival in 1960 with a program of 105 performances (74 for adults and 31 for children) over the course of half a month. Held biennially on even numbered years, the Adelaide Festival and its concurrent Adelaide Fringe Festival grew to become one of Australia’s leading international arts festival events along with those in Sydney and Melbourne. Invited participants from Japan include Daisan Erotica with A Man Named Macbeth in 1994 and Yukichi Matsumoto with Mizumachi in 2000. The festival has been held annually since 2012.
- Adelaide Festival