Eight things to do around Canberra this weekend (28–30 April)

Zoe Pleasants 12 February 2018

It cannot be the weekend already, it hardly feels like the week started. This weekend is all about culture. Adding to the Spanish Film Festival and Canberra and Region Heritage Festival which are currently on, the Canberra International Music Festival starts this weekend, there are a couple of good plays on at the Canberra Theatre, and the Museum is opening its doors on Friday for an entertaining and informative night celebrating heroes and villains. If you like to wind down after work on a Friday at the gym, why not consider walking around Lake Burley Griffin instead. The Ignite Walk, in support of young people and adults living with cerebral palsy, will be lighting up the lake and Lennox Gardens.

All weekend

Canberra International Music Festival
Where: Various venues
When: 27 April – 7 May
The Canberra International Music Festival opens this weekend. The theme of this year’s festival is Revolution and as Artistic Director, Roland Peelman explains the festival is finding its inspiration from those moments in history where revolution happened and something entirely new emerged. Take 1917, for example, the world was at war, Mexico wrote its first revolutionary constitution and Russian workers took to the street. This weekend’s concerts include the Simón Bolívar String Quartet, a quartet made up of the section leaders of the Venezuela’s Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra; James Morrison playing at the Fitters Workshop in Kingston; the amazing didgeridoo player, William Barton in a concert of Aboriginal children’s songs and stories; and a concert especially for kids at the National Library on Sunday morning (9:30 & 11am) which will see Mr Tim and Ensemble Offspring bring the children’s classic Blinky Bill to life with music. Check out the full program here.

Where: Canberra Theatre
When: Friday 8pm & Saturday 2pm & 8pm
Queensland theatre company, Shake & Stir specialises in bringing classic stories to stage. Last year they toured their production Wuthering Heights to Canberra, this year they are bringing another bloody classic, Dracula to town. Artistic Directors, Nelle Lee and Nick Skubij have adapted the Bram Stoker’s novel with few modern twists.

The Play that Goes Wrong
Where: Canberra Theatre
When: Fri 7:30pm, Sat 2pm & 7:30pm & Sun 1pm & 5pm
If comedy is more your thing, try The Play that Goes Wrong, which won the Best New Comedy at the Olivier Awards last year. The play tells the story of the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society who are putting on a 1920s murder mystery but the accident-prone thespians battle against all odds to reach their final curtain call.


Night at the Museum: Heroes and Villans
Where: National Museum of Australia
When: 6–9:30pm
The Museum is opening its doors this Friday night for a fun night of activities and adventures. Come dressed as your favourite superhero or villain; enjoy tunes provided by DJ, Brother J; participate in a cartoon drawing, stunt-fighting or acting workshops; listen to a talk; or play one of the many games that will be set up—try out your Nerf gun skills without the kids around. Please note, even though this sounds like a perfect night out with the kids its an over 18 event. For a full list of activities check out the program here. Kick on afterwards at Lucky’s Speakeasy at QT Canberra for the official after party.

Ignite Walk
Where: Patrick White Lawns (near National Library of Australia)
When: From 5pm
Experience Lake Burley Griffin and Lennox Gardens in a whole new light this Friday night. With live entertainment, neon light installations and music to inspire you, challenge yourself to walk 7km, 14km or 21km in support of young people and adults living with cerebral palsy. It will all start with a Neon Ignite Party at 5pm on the Patrick White Lawns. Pick up your bib, grab a bite to eat from the food stalls, and get your face painted with neon, glow in the dark face paint! Then warm up and start walking at 6:15pm if you’re doing the 21km event, 6:30pm if you’re doing the 14km event and 6:45pm if you’re doing the 7km event. More details and to register here.


Celebrate Gungahlin 2017
Where: Gungahlin Town Square, corner of Hibberson and Gozzard Streets
When: 10am–3pm
The third annual Celebrate Gungahlin Festival is on this Saturday. Celebrate all that is great about Gungahlin with food, entertainment and market stalls, and get information on local community groups.

Slow Turismo
Where: The Phoenix
When: From 9pm
One of my favourite local bands is playing at The Phoenix this Saturday night, indie rock outfit Slow Turismo. They are an accomplished band who incorporates beautiful vocals, melodies and harmonies into their music. Check them out at Triple J Unearthed. Supporting Slow Turismo will be Slumberhaze, Capes and Video Breezy.


Soundwaves in Space
Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: 2:30–4pm
The National Portrait Gallery will be creating an ambient sound experience in its entry hall this Sunday for you to enjoy as you please. Senior Curator at the Gallery, Chris Chapman will be looping ambient tracks and environmental recordings using a laptop and iPod to suggest soft atmospheric drift, overlaid by gentle percussion and synthesiser elements. The performance will go for 90 minutes and will softly colour the space, invite attentive and relaxing listening, and is designed to evoke memories and feelings.

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