Moving a large portion of our day-to-day activities online during COVID-19 lockdown is having an unexpected side effect: the world is getting smaller.
This weekend in Canberra, you can check out what’s happening at the National Gallery of Australia, the National Museum of Australia, and in the more casual art and music communities around town. Or you can just as easily poke your head into Sydney’s Sea Life Aquarium, or even Japan’s Ghibli Museum.
Where: Streaming online
When: Various times
Theatres and comedy clubs were among the first places to close down when COVID-19 social distancing came into effect, leaving theatre lovers seemingly with nowhere to go for their cultural fix. However, the Canberra Theatre Centre has compiled a collection of links on its website featuring institutions that are making content, both live and archival, available online. The Australian Ballet, Metropolitan Opera and Sydney Opera House are some of the cultural hubs hosting content online in this highly explorable list.
Where: Ghibli Museum’s YouTube channel
Studio Ghibli, creators of iconic Japanese animated classics such as Ponyo, Castle In The Sky, Howl’s Moving Castle and Spirited Away, is revered in the world of film. The Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, Japan, has this week thrown open its doors to the world, albeit digitally. Tours through various parts of the museum have been uploaded to YouTube with more still to come. For fans, it’s an opportunity to visit an institution they aren’t likely to make it to in person any time soon.
Where: At home
When art galleries around the world learned they would likely be closed to in-person visitors for quite some time, they started to get creative. The Stay At Home Challenge sees art lovers recreating famous works of art using only the materials available to them. The National Gallery of Australia has thrown down the challenge to Canberrans, with the likes of Sidney Nolan and Jackson Pollock already getting the Stay At Home Treatment.
Thursday 7 May:
Where: Instagram Live, hosted by Homegrown Sounds
When: Thursday from 6:00 pm
Local music facilitator Homegrown Sounds has collected five of its favourite singer-songwriters from ACT and around NSW for Close To Home 2. The first iteration of this online festival provided a welcome opportunity to reconnect with the local live music community. Join this event on Facebook to be notified of set times, and head to each artists’ Instagram pages for their live streams as they happen.
Friday 8 May:
Where: Taking place via Zoom. Sign up at the ACT Region Conservation Council website
When: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Missing your regular trivia night? Fear not, there is a host of online options to choose from. This week sees the ACT Region Conservation Council presenting a nature-themed trivia night. Expect a few curveball questions about the flora, fauna and natural landmarks of the Canberra region and go in the running to win one of a number of prizes up for grabs. Individuals, small groups and households are welcome, and donations to the council are encouraged when you register your team.
Sunday 10 May:
Where: Streaming online, sign up at Eventbrite
When: Sunday and Tuesday, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
SD Portraiture & Illustration is sharing its portrait-drawing secrets with you this Sunday and next Tuesday in free online classes. Develop some new skills from the comfort of your home and enjoy a fun, social atmosphere while you do it. Essentially all you need is a pencil and something to draw on, but a detailed list of supplies will be provided to those who sign up via Eventbrite.
Where: Your neighbourhood
When: Before or on Sunday 10 May
The annual Mother’s Day Classic is taking a slightly different shape this year. Instead of taking place with thousands of runners or walkers heading out together on the 4km or 8km circuit, participants are being encouraged to take on the challenge in their neighbourhood, at their favourite walking track, or even in their backyards. Registrations are live and entrants can undertake their walk or run any time before or on Sunday 10 May.
Wednesday 13 May:
Where: Streaming at sydneyaquarium.com.au
When: From 11:30 am
Sydney’s Sea Life Aquarium has been letting visitors virtually check in with its inhabitants in recent weeks. Sharks, penguins and all sorts of undersea creatures have graced the internet. Wednesday 13 May will see the aquarium’s four eagle rays – Freckle, Ani, Luka and Leia – being fed live on camera for the world to see. Get up close and personal with some of the most elegant creatures on earth all without leaving the house.