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Canberra Day of the Dead Fiesta – Music, art, Mexican wrestling and more!

By Elias Hallaj - 22 October 2017 0

On Saturday 4 November, Canberrans will have a chance to experience the amazing tradition of “Dia De Muertos” at the Day of the Dead Fiesta – a yearly community celebration of Latin American & multicultural music, dance, food, and art. This year’s Fiesta will be held from 1 pm until 8 pm at the Ainslie Arts Centre and from 8 pm until late at the Harmonie German Club.

Watch this short film of some of the highlights of the 2016 Day of the Dead Fiesta in Canberra that also screened at this year’s Canberra Short Film Festival.

Day of the Dead – Canberra

Day of the Dead Fiesta – Canberra – What is Day of the Dead ?

Posted by Day of the Dead Fiesta – Canberra on Monday, 5 June 2017

Hosted by local musicians Los Chavos, the event is in its 6th year and features live music from local and interstate bands, DJs, art and cultural exhibitions, market and food stalls, a kids Piñata and face painting for everyone – AND FOR THE FIRST TIME IN CANBERRA – authentic LUCHA LIBRE (Mexican wrestling) by Lucha Fantastica.

Starting at 1 pm until 8 pm all inside the amazing Ainslie Arts Centre – the organisers have lined up some Tango Punk hip-hop from the amazing The New MonoS (Melb/Argentina), Soul Reggae mixed with psychedelic Peruvian jams from Nativösoul (Syd/Peru), instrumental Flamenco from the masked mariachi’s Kallidad (Syd), and of course some Latin Ska and Cumbia from locals Los Chavos and Romanian gypsy music from Super Rats!

All of this comes with entry to the fiesta, plus a special all-ages ‘Lucha Libre’ demonstration and photo session for all our under 18’s and families. Market and Latin American food stalls and drinks (including a bar) will ensure you enjoy this unique cultural event which gets bigger and better each time!

WHAT IS LUCHA LIBRE? It’s Spanish for “Free fight” – ‘Lucha Libre’ is a term used in Mexico for a form of professional wrestling developed in the country. Professional wrestling is an athletic form of entertainment based on a portrayal of a combat sport. Mexican wrestling is characterised by colourful masks, rapid sequences of holds and manoeuvres, as well as “high-flying” manoeuvres. The wearing of masks has developed special significance, and matches are sometimes contested in which the loser must permanently remove his mask, which is a wager with a high degree of weight attached. Expect ‘Rudos’ (bad guys) against ‘Technicos’ (good guys), cabaret and acrobatics!

Lucha Fantastica is a crew of Mexican wrestlers, referees, musicians, DJs, hula hoopists, fire eaters and exotic dancers with over 10 years experience nationally and internationally! A diverse group of Mexican and Australian performing artists who will be in Canberra for the first time as part of Day of the Dead Fiesta in Canberra!

The live music finishes at 8 pm, giving you time to put the kids to bed and make your way to the Harmonie German Club for the main night event – authentic Lucha Libre – for the first time in Canberra. For more information, visit their Facebook event page. Getting to Harmonie German Club from Ainslie Arts Centre is easy, and the organisers promise to have free buses to take you there!

Special discount adult tickets are available for people attending both events.

The line up will be rounded out by special performances by Tambores Onofri, Raio de Sol Canberra Community Samba Band and the Mexico Lindo Canberra Dance group!

Get your face painted and learn a little about how vast and deep Latin culture is. Paint a skull, learn a dance or two and reflect on what’s important as we mark the Mexican tradition of the Day of the Dead by enjoying the best in life!

Presented by Day of the Dead Fiesta – Canberra with the support of Clandestino Events, the Ainslie Arts Centre, Lucha Fantastica and the Mexican Embassy in Canberra.


DAYTIME – 1 pm – 8:30 pm
SATURDAY 4th NOVEMBER at Ainslie Arts Centre
TICKETS: available on Eventbrite

NIGHT TIME – 8:30 pm – Midnight
SATURDAY 4th NOVEMBER Harmonie German Club
TICKETS: available on moshtix, or visit the Lucha Fantastica website.


Remember not to miss out on this opportunity to watch Mexican wrestling for the first time in Canberra!

And if you’d like to listen to a wonderful Canberra podcast and get into the mood for the Day of the Dead, local radio program World Vibe – ArtSound FM recently aired an hour-long music special on Day of the Dead, showcasing music from the bands that will be coming to town on November 4th! You can listen to the podcast online here.

Elias Hallaj (aka CBRfoodie) is a part-time food blogger and full-time political staffer who has joined RiotACT as a regular contributor. All his opinions about fiestas and wrestling are his own, except where he has borrowed them from facebook, google, and twitter. If you have any tips or feedback or advice about ‘suicidas’ (suicide moves), ‘desnucadoras’ (power bombs), ‘patadas voladoras’ (flying kicks), ‘filomenas’ (spin kicks), ‘quebradoras’ (spinning back breaker), or other exciting things to do around Canberra you can add a comment below or find him most nights on Twitter @CBRfoodie.

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