The Brisbane International Arts Festival is sneaking up on us Brisbaners, and it is going to be one of the best ones yet. The Brisbane festival has been an annual event since 2009, and this year it will be running from the 8th-29th September. The mission behind the Brisbane festival this year, is to connect artists and audiences in ways that lift the spirit and disrupt the conventional. So in conjunction with that aim, Hidden City Secrets brings you our top five picks, on how to have the most disruptive festival yet.
La Boite – Roundhouse Theatre, 6-8 Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove, QLD, 4059.
YUMMY is a gender-busting live performance, including cabaret, dance, circus, and live music. YUMMY is a highly regarded Drag Show put on by Australia’s best within the industry. Featuring performers, Karen from Finance, Benjamin Hancock, Valerie Hex, Jandruze, Hannie Helsden, Beni Lola, and Joni in the Moon. The show was the winner of Best Production and Best Ensemble (Cabaret) at the 2018 Green Room Awards. The group originated in Melbourne at Melbourne’s Midsumma Festival, before also headlining Sydney’s Mardi Gras, Melbourne Fringe, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Adelaide Fringe, and many more. The show is thought to be one of the best drag shows Australia has seen, if this is your first time experiencing drag, this would be the show to see! It is filled with dancing, laughter, music, and naughty humour. The creativity of the performances leave the audience members unable to predict what is going to happen next, and a huge highlight is the personality that shines through of each individual performer. It’s your turn now Brisbane to give these gals the welcome they deserve. If you love to have a laugh and experience something new, this is the show to see!
WHEN IS IT: YUMMY is performing from Wednesday 12th of September until Saturday 15th.
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST ME: The ticket prices are $45 concession, and $55 general admission.
Romeo is Not the Only Fruit
Theatre Republic – The Loft, The Loft (Building Z2), QUT Creative Industries, Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove, QLD, 4059.
Romeo is Not the Only Fruit, a musical written by Australian born, self-described lesbian, Jean Tong. It explores the trope of Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers, but if it were between two women instead. It stars a chorus of incompetent, dead lesbians that try and keep Juliet and Darcy apart. In light of the recent marriage equality succession, Romeo is Not the Only Fruit, still portrays a love story that shows the battle isn’t over for queer people, there is always difficulties, and things getting in the way of love. It’s a show to open your eyes and your heart to, it reverses stereotypes and tells an honest story. The Sydney Morning Herald gave it a 4 out of 5 star rating and wrote, ‘The show’s clever, irreverent humour had me laughing like a drain. It’s more impressive because it can be so difficult to translate good politics into good comedy.’ The show has received great reviews since it was performed at Melbourne’s International Comedy Festival earlier this year, it is heart-warming, funny, and honest.
WHEN SHOULD I GO: Romeo is Not the Only Fruit is playing from Tuesday the 18th September until Saturday 22nd of September.
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST ME: Tickets are $24 concession, and $32 general admission.
House of Mirrors
Treasury Brisbane Arcadia, Cultural Forecourt, SOUTH BANK, QLD, 4101.
Created by Melbourne artists, Christian Wagstaff and Keith Courtney, House of Mirrors is a maze made entirely out of steel and mirrors. Created by Melbourne artists, Christian Wagstaff and Keith Courtney.The House of Mirrors was designed in such a way that visitors often can see others reflections but not their own and vice versa, this makes it nearly impossible to keep a sense of direction once you’re inside the labyrinth. Mirror mazes have been psychologically and physically challenging to those that venture into them. Most that enter experience a range of emotions, from delight, all the way to fear. Depending on what time of day/night you enter into the labyrinth. It’s the activity to take your friend that loves to be spooked to. Time Out Sydney described the House of Mirrors as such, ‘In our experience, you haven’t truly survived the House of Mirrors until you’ve jumped out of your skin – spooked by your own reflection.’ The House of Mirrors can be wonderfully spectacular, or frighteningly spooky. But it is also an art installment that you can’t miss.
WHEN SHOULD I GO: The House of Mirrors is open for the duration of the Brisbane Festival, from the 8th of September until the 29th.
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST ME: Tickets between 10:00am-4:00pm are $10 to enter, and between 6:00pm-10:00pm they are $15.
Treasury Brisbane Arcadia, Cultural Forecourt, SOUTH BANK, QLD, 4101.
Created by UK artists Glen Neath and David Rosenberg, Séance explores the psychology of a group of people bombarded with suggestible material. Séance involves a 20 minute experience, in which you enter into a shipping container with chairs lined-up against the walls, a large narrow table in the middle. The lights go out, you’re locked in, everything is black. What happens next is a spine-tingling experience that blurs the boundaries of perception and reality. The piece utilises bin-aural audio technology and sonic vibrations to deliver an experience that plays tricks on the mind. Psychologically, the experience plays mostly on the idea of suggestion, you are never truly in danger, you are just made to believe that you are. The Sydney Morning Herald’s review states, ‘if you’ve got the spine, Séance brings the tingle.’ Séance plays on your fears and on anxiety, creating a mini 20 minute horror inside your mind. If you’re into that sort of thing… Take your friend that studies psychology and figure out how you would react in a sensory deprivation experience.
WHEN IS IT: Séance runs across the entirety of the Brisbane Festival, from the 8th-29th of September.
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST ME: Tickets are $20.
Harry James Angus – Struggle with Glory
The Tivoli, 52 Costin Street, Fortitude Valley, QLD, 4006.
The Cat Empire’s trumpeter/vocalist performing his 2018 solo album, ‘Struggle with Glory.’ A mix of music reminiscent of the 1920’s fused with modern day music inflections. Harry James Angus is doing things that no other artist is doing at the moment, making the trumpet cool again. If you like to pretend it’s the roaring 20’s, have a glass of wine, and play your records on a Friday night, Harry James Angus is the artist for you. Harry James Angus mixes jazz with gospel music, in a modern way that displaces the listener as to what time period they have just stepped into. His vocals are mesmerising, as is his beautiful music that can move your senses into a trance-like state. Whether you know his music or not, he is the artist to see, with his originality, experience, and overall good vibes, Henry James Angus will have you dancing the night away.
WHEN IS IT: Henry James Angus is playing for one night, and for one night only, on Friday the 28th of September at 8:00pm.
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST ME: Tickets for concession cost $45, and for general admission cost $55.
Hopefully you’ve found something on this list that tickles your fancy, something new to try, a new perspective, something to make you laugh, something to make you sing, something to make you fear. The Brisbane International Arts Festival is showcasing it all this year, instead of just sticking to the status quo, branch out and experience something you normally wouldn’t.
By Georgie Hindle