Festivals and Arts Events
Just 50 years ago, there was only one major arts festival in Australia. Today all Australian capital cities have multi-arts festivals that showcase the best of local and international artists and performers. There are also hundreds of smaller community-based festivals, and national and regional festivals that focus on specific art forms.
Australia’s first multi-arts festivals were established in Perth in Western Australia in 1953 and in Adelaide in South Australia in 1960. Festivals in other cities and regional centres proliferated in the 1960s. Major multi-arts festivals are now held in Sydney (January), Canberra (February), Perth (February), Adelaide (March), Tasmania (March), Brisbane (July), Darwin (August) and Melbourne (October).
The federal government encourages arts festivals by providing financial support to regional and community organisers through a program called Festivals Australia. Funding is provided to community groups to present quality cultural projects, including innovative activities that have not been organised before in a particular region.
(Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade)
There is a clear overlap in interests amongst university-based Humanities researchers and Australia's thriving arts and cultural communities. The ACHRC aims to foster links between these groups, not least by drawing attention to the plethora of Festivals and Arts Events in this country.