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Art Down Under: Over 200,000 Attendees at OzAsia Festival 2019


ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA –  Adelaide Festival Centre’s OzAsia Festival is celebrating its growing success with 200,000 attendees across a range of sold-out performances and popular free events for the 18-day festival, which closed yesterday.

Audiences were treated to ground-breaking and genre-defying work from world-class contemporary artists – everything from talking rice cookers, ‘headless’ dancers and fictional banks to thought-provoking observations on cultural identity, migration and generational exchange.

The 2019 program featured 35 Adelaide exclusives including five world-first performances and 22 Australian premieres – all across 60 events presented by 850 artists from more than 20 countries.

Commissioned by OzAsia Festival in conjunction with Malaysia’s George Town Festival, the world premiere of Light by Thomas Henning and TerryandTheCuz was among nine shows attracting sold-out crowds. Others included £¥€$ (Belgium/Hong Kong), Surpassing the Beeline (India/Netherlands/Australia) and The Dark Master (Japan).

OzAsia Festival Artistic Director Joseph Mitchell: “This has been our most successful festival to date with an overwhelmingly positive response to this year’s program of stunning dance, provocative theatre, enchanting music, eye-opening film and awe-inspiring visual art. We are thrilled with the rave reviews we’ve received from critics and audience members alike – especially Australian premieres and Adelaide exclusives such as Cuckoo by South Korea’s Jaha Koo and My Home at the Intersection by Punjabi theatre maker Abhishek Thapar. And to have internationally renowned artists like Stan Lai, Akram Khan and Nitin Sawhney presenting works has been one of the many highlights of this year’s festival.”

Coinciding with OzAsia Festival 2019 was the inaugural Asia-Pacific Creative Cities Conference which attracted more than 200 top-level delegates from around the world – including 20 cities from the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Adelaide Festival Centre CEO and Artistic Director Douglas Gautier AM said the success of OzAsia Festival 2019 was owed to a range of contributors including state, federal and local governments.

“It’s wonderful that we have grown so much over the past 13 years to now have tens of thousands of people attending OzAsia Festival and its associated events such as the Moon Lantern Parade and Lucky Dumpling Market. In 2019 these included hundreds of delegates for the Asia-Pacific Creative Cities Conference along with thousands of attendances at JLF Adelaide over our closing weekend. This is a true reflection of Australia’s multicultural community and a recognition of our future in the Asia-Pacific region. We are certainly grateful to the beautiful spring weather we’ve enjoyed during the festival, and this has helped ensure a strong turnout of more than 38,000 to our Moon Lantern Parade along with 88,000 attendances at the Lucky Dumpling Market over the past 18 days. We also thank those who made OzAsia Festival 2019 possible – including all of our fantastic sponsors, partners, artists, community groups, volunteers, staff and audiences.”

Adelaide Festival Centre’s Artspace Gallery will feature Still by Taiwanese artist Joyce Ho until 22nd November, while its QBE Galleries will still be home to two visual art exhibitions, Samsung Loves Us All and Sorry for Real, until 23rd November. Sisters Sangam will continue at SASA Gallery until 14th November 14, while The Glamorous Boys of Tang will be featured at Nexus Gallery until 29th November 29.

Other ongoing OzAsia Festival exhibitions include Sonic Blossom at the Art Gallery of South Australia (AGSA) until 1st December  Ascent at Samstag Museum until 6th December and No God But God: The Art of Islam at AGSA until 2020.

OzAsia Festival 2019 took place from 17th October to 3rd November 2019 at the Adelaide Festival Centre. OzAsia Festival will return in 2020 from 22nd October to 8th November, with updates available here

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