Current Issue #488

Adelaide Festival Centre opens its heart

Adelaide Festival Centre opens its heart

Around 25,000 people are expected to explore the Adelaide Festival Centre on Sunday when the doors of the performing arts complex are flung open to the public for its first Open Day in more than decade.

With stage one of the Festival Centre redevelopment now completed, the Open Day is a chance to experience the north-side of the Centre and its new foyer and Walk of Fame as well as the renovated Festival Theatre and backstage areas via self-guided tours. A highlight of the tour will be the appearance of the centre’s impressive Silver Jubilee Organ, which will be on display on the Festival Theatre stage.

festival-centre-open-day-adelaide-review-2(photo: Kelly Carpenter)

The last time the Festival Centre opened its doors to the public more than 23,000 people took the opportunity to explore Australia’s first multipurpose arts venue inside and out. Aside from showing a new and improved Festival Centre, which includes the new outlets Star Kitchen and Bar, Koffee Ink and Neon, Sunday’s Open Day will feature pop-up and roving performances from Festival Centre home companies such as State Theatre Company and Windmill Theatre Co. as well as State Opera SA, Cirkidz and the cast of The Wizard of Oz.

“It’s really to show the Centre as a whole,” Open Day producer Kellie Nicol says. “Considering it’s been almost 15 years since we’ve opened the doors in this way, it’s really to let people experience what they don’t usually see and experience when they come see a show.”

(photo: Cath Leo)

The family-friendly Open Day is the last in a series of events to celebrate the reopening of the Festival Theatre and the completion of stage one of the redevelopment with Nicol saying it’s a “day to open up the doors and give back to the people”.

“The new foyer and entrance are exciting, brand new and shiny,” she says. “We want people to get familiar with that and enjoy it. This will bring the Centre back to everyone’s focus because the redevelopment has taken a long time and will continue to take a long time.”

The south-side of the Festival Centre is expected to be completed by 2020.

Adelaide Festival Centre Open Day
Sunday, February 11, 11am to 4pm (Kaurna opening ceremony starts at 10am)

Header photo: Claude Raschella

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