More than three weeks of arts and cultural celebration – featuring 160 sell-out performances and eight world premieres – has concluded with a superhero-themed Sunsuper Riverfire finale bursting across Brisbane’s skyline.
Queensland Arts Minister Leeanne Enoch said the state’s largest cultural festival had once again entertained the masses, with 70 different shows across 17 venues, a new art-meets-technology water spectacle, and the always awe-inspiring Riverfire, now in its 21st year.
“Brisbane Festival, one of our most exciting annual events, hit a new box office record this year with over 80,000 tickets sold – breaking last year’s record by the first week,” Ms Enoch said.
“Adored by locals and visitors alike, the festival featured 1,000 local, national and international artists, and delivered 600 arts and entertainment experiences in a city-wide cultural celebration.
“Close to half-a-million people visited Treasury Brisbane Arcadia at the Cultural Forecourt to be part of the festival vibe and see #CelebrateBrisbane River of Light – The Story of Maiwar, a moving and beautiful depiction of the Indigenous story of the creation of the Brisbane River.
“We are fortunate to boast a dynamic arts industry, and I applaud our wonderful local artists and companies on captivating audiences with their exceptional work throughout September.
“I’d also like to give special congratulations to Brisbane’s Circa Contemporary Circus and Townsville’s Dancenorth for their sold-out productions of En Masse and Dust.
“The Palaszczuk Government, through Arts Queensland, is proud to be a major supporter of Brisbane Festival, which injects around $33.5 million into our state’s economy and continues to strengthen Queensland’s reputation as a global arts destination.
Brisbane Festival Artistic Director David Berthold said he was deeply satisfied by the festival and the attendance generated.
“We smashed last year’s record box office, we launched eight world premieres into the world, and we pulled off a major coup in our colossal production of Peter Grimes,” Mr Berthold said.
Not to mention, our central hub at Treasury Brisbane Arcadia saw record numbers, we shared in the nightly, spectacular telling of a Dreamtime story of the creation of the river, and we found lots of ways to connect with brand new audiences.
“To me, this year’s festival felt like a great turning point.”
Brisbane Festival is renowned for connecting local and international artists and audiences through a colourful program of theatre, dance, music, circus, comedy and cabaret.