Let there be light (festivals), all year round

Vivid Sydney may have turned off the lights before 2022, but the nighttime spectacles continue thanks to a host of luminescent festivals across the country.

“I think Vivid has demonstrated the benefits that investment in large-scale cultural events can bring to a city, and I think its popularity has helped build the confidence of other governments to make these investments in their own state,” said co-author. creator and director of Illuminate Adelaide. Lee Cumberlidge.

Illuminate, which runs from July 1 to 31, is the latest to build on Vivid’s massive success. music phenomenon Gorillaz.

“People are attracted to light and at Illuminate Adelaide we have expanded this to include immersion, interactivity with technology in art and music,” said Cumberlidge.

Like Vivid, which was canceled two years in a row due to the pandemic, Illuminate’s inaugural 2021 showcase was disrupted by sudden border closures just days after the festival.

But if Vivid’s record-breaking 2.58 million visitor numbers in 2022 are anything to go by, then Illuminate is on track to give South Australia’s economy a major boost.

“Light Cycles sold out completely in 2021 and we really wanted those who missed it, as well as visitors to the highways, to have the chance to experience this wonderful project,” said Cumberlidge of the event’s return in 2022.

Produced by Montreal-based multimedia studio Moment Factory, famed for its stage productions for artists such as Billie Eilish and Madonna, the ticketed event has once again transformed the Adelaide Botanic Garden with an expansive display of lighting, lasers, projections and sound.

Large-scale ticketed events are a major focus of the Illuminate lineup, complemented by a free program of interactive installations, City Lights, streaming through the city streets.

Adelaide’s answer to Vivid is in good company next Light landscape (June 24 to August 7)making its Australian debut at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne after festivals in the UK and US, and GLOW: Bendigo After Dark (June 25 to July 17).

Glenn Harvey, marketing manager for Bendigo Regional Tourism, said the festival concept contributes to tourism during the traditionally quiet period for the regional center.

“Glow was founded to generate visitors. Vivid inspired us to look at another nighttime festival that could tell our Bendigo stories for more than one night and generate visitors for an extended period of time,” Harvey said.

“Night festivals are fantastic to photograph because they offer a lot of wow moments, and social media plays a key role in communicating the joy of their visit to people.”

The impact of the pandemic on local tourism has given many Australian governing bodies an impulse to join the crowd of destinations turning on the after-dark dazzle.

The Gold Coast is launching its new art and culture festival, Big City Lights, in the heart of the city from July 1-10.

“It’s more on the boutique end of the spectrum, but Big City Lights is also indicative of the Gold Coast cultural revolution, which has seen significant investment in arts and culture over the past five years,” said Artistic Director Rosie Dennis.

One of the more unusual light festivals debuting this year is Reef Lights, part of Cairns Festival, which will recreate the Great Barrier Reef from August 26 to September 4 through a number of themed light installations along the Cairns Esplanade and Lagoon.

“Reef Lights was developed following a huge success with the Cairns Festival’s City Light project, where local visual artists teamed up with projection specialists from Sydney Vivid to illuminate the facade of the Cairns Historic Library,” said Cairns Mayor Bob Manning.

“After the overwhelmingly positive reception, the organizers wanted to go one step further.”

The addition features the work of six local artists from different cultural backgrounds. Among the dazzling displays is a marine-inspired bioluminescence installation and a neon jellyfish garden.

This year alone, Australia has already embraced Canberra’s Enlighten Festival (4-20 March), the Red Center’s Parrtjima – A Festival of Light (7-16 April) and Rising Melbourne (1-12 June), featuring events featuring a light theme. the Australian calendar through the summer months.

Cumberlidge sets the trend for the sense of wonder and beauty that lighting installations promote.

“Light is a fundamental source of life and during the dark, longer nights of winter, this beacon gives hope, optimism and warmth.”

THE CALENDAR OF THE AUSTRALIAN LIGHT FESTIVAL

Lightscape Melbourne (June 24 – August 7, 2022)

To see melbournelightscape.com.au

GLOW: Bendigo After Dark (June 25 – July 17, 2022)

To see bendigoregion.com.au

Illuminated Adelaide (1-31 July 2022)

To see illuminateadelaide.com

Big City Lights Gold Coast (July 7-10, 2022)

To see bigcitylightsfestival.com.au

Moama Lights, The Murray (July 31 – August 21, 2022)

To see echucamoama.com/moama-lights-2021

Reef Lights: Illuminate the Tropics (August 26 – September 4, 2022)

To see cairns.qld.gov.au

Perth Winter Lights Festival (August 13-21, 2022)

To see bfplperth.com

White Night: Bendigo (September 3, 2022)

To see whitenight.com.au/bendigo

White Night: Geelong (October 8, 2022)

To see whitenight.com.au/gelong

Canberra Enlighten Festival (March 2023)

To see litcanberra.com

Parrtjima – A festival in light (April 7-16, 2023)

To see parrtjimaaustralia.com.au

Rising Melbourne (June 2023)

To see rising.melbourne

White Night: Shepparton (June 2023)

To see whitenight.com.au/shepparton

Field of Light, Uluru (extended indefinitely)

To see ayersrockresort.com.au/experiences/field-of-light


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