15 June 2023

Things to do in Canberra this week (16 to 22 June)

| Travis Radford
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Group roasting marshmallows

The Raclette Igloos are a cosy place to escape your winter woes and indulge in a little cheesy goodness. Photo: Supplied.

Indulge in the French tradition of melting cheese with loved ones or the German tradition of celebrating Winter solstice this week.

Or strip down and bear it all for charity in the seventh annual Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim, raising vital funds for Lifeline.

Plus, there are several new shows about American politics, mental health, sassy, crass women and everything in between.

And last but not least, there’s the opening of the 2023 National Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition and much more.

Friday and Saturday

Shredded image.

Systems and Sanity is the culmination of a two-year program featuring about 20 participants (from left to right, Liz Drysdale, Grant McLindon, Sam Floyd and Fi Peel). Photo: Rebus Theatre.

Systems and Sanity

When: Thursday 15 to Saturday 17 June, various times
Where: Gorman Arts Centre, Batman Street, Braddon
Cost: $10 to $25; book here.

Ticketed as a theatrical journey through the mental health system, replete with pathos, poetry, music and laughter, the show is the culmination of a two-year program called Systems of Sanity. The program used theatre games and exercises to explore how people with lived experience of mental ill-health thought and communicated about mental health and the mental health system.

READ MORE Systems and Sanity promises to squeeze ‘plenty of theatrical juice’ from mental health theme


collage of portraits

The National Photographic Portrait Prize 2023 opens on Saturday, the day after the winner is selected. Photo: National Portrait Gallery.

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2023

When: Saturday 17 June to Monday 2 October
Where: National Portrait Gallery, King Edward Terrace, Parkes
Cost: $10 to $15 per adult, under-18s free; book here.

After the 2023 prize winner is selected on Friday, the 47 finalists’ portraits (chosen from over 2300 entries) will be displayed at the National Portrait Gallery from Saturday. The annual prize celebrates established, emerging and amateur Australian photographers’ diverse and inventive approaches to communicating something beyond the appearance of their portrait subjects.

Winter Solstice Bier and Schnapps Expo

Harmonie German Club invites Canberrans to indulge themselves in a German tradition. Photo: Harmonie German Club.

Winter Solstice Bier and Schnapps Expo

When: Saturday 17 June, from 3 pm
Where: Harmonie German Club, 49 Jerrabomberra Avenue, Narrabundah
Cost: Free entry, tasting packages from $6.34; book here.

Partake in the German tradition of celebrating the winter solstice by sampling a selection of German biers, other styles of beer and schnapps. Expect the Harmonie German Club to be decked out with stalls, banners, posters, merchants and music alongside winter-warming German delights. And, of course, you’ll also be able to buy or order your favourite beverages to take home with you.

Saturday and Sunday

ice hockey goalkeeper

Catch all the action this weekend as Caribou CBR Brave faces Newcastle Northstars and Melbourne Ice. Photo: Scott Stevenson.

Caribou CBR Brave v Newcastle Northstars

When: Saturday 17 June, from 5 pm and Sunday 18 June, from 4:30 pm
Where: Phillip Ice Skating Centre, 1 Irving Street, Phillip
Cost: From $15; book here.

Defending Goodall Cup champions Caribou CBR Brave hope to continue their winning streak when they take on the Newcastle Northstars and Melbourne Ice this weekend. Plus, the action is set to continue in the Brave Cave with a full program of games scheduled through August.


two Korean women singing

Learn traditional Korean music from two Korean master singers. Photo: The Korean Association of Canberra.

Traditional Korean Music Classes

When: Monday 19 to Friday 30 June, various times
Where: Australian National University, Canberra
Cost: Free; book here.

The Korean Association of Canberra is holding free traditional Korean music classes taught by two Korean master singers. The classes will run Monday through Friday, with morning sessions hosted by Sung Duk Hong, who teaches Pansori (Korean opera) and evening sessions hosted by Dana Kim, who teaches Minyo (Korean folk songs) and traditional Korean dance.


Nude swimmers

Strip off and take a dip in Lake Burley Griffin for a good cause at the crack of dawn. Photo: Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim.

Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim 2023

When: Thursday 22 June, from 7:30 am
Where: Yarralumla Beach, Canberra
Cost: $35; book here.

Daks off for a good cause! The Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim is returning to Canberra for its seventh year to raise money for Lifeline and wash away negativity ahead of the solar year. Those who have stripped off and taken a dip in Lake Burley Griffin’s chilly waters on the shortest day of the year for charity have already raised $135,000 since the event was first held in 2017.

abstract paiting

Immerse yourself in the sounds of the desert landscape. Photo: Canberra Symphony Orchestra.

Canberra Symphony Orchestra: Red Desert Sand

When: Thursday 22 June, from 6:30 pm (pre-concert talk from 5:30 pm)
Where: National Museum of Australia, Lawson Crescent, Acton
Cost: $17 to $67; book here.

This new program is inspired by the vastness of the desert landscape and the colour red itself. The show opens with William Barton’s work about the spirits of Kalkadunga country (Mount Isa), alongside works by one of Australia’s most well-known composers, Peter Sculthorpe, Katy Abbott, acclaimed sound artist Dr Ros Bandt, and Noongar violist and scholar Aaron Wyatt.


When: Thursday 22 June to Saturday 1 July, various times
Where: Canberra Theatre Centre, Civic Square, London Circuit, Canberra
Cost: $49 to $69 plus booking fee; book here.

Billed as the Australian stage’s answer to Fleabag and The Letdown, the company that brought audiences Prima Facie presents the sassy, crass one-woman crusade, Pony. The show tells the story of Hazel (Briallen Clarke), a delusional, reality TV-obsessed fantasist who swears like a sailor, has a fondness for greased-up male strippers and is hugely, undeniably, ready-to-pop pregnant.


The Raclette Igloos are a cosy place to escape your winter woes and indulge in a little cheesy goodness. Photo: Supplied.

The Raclette Igloo

When: Thursday 22 June to Sunday 2 July, various times
Where: Parkes Place Lawn, King Edward Terrace, Parkes
Cost: $99; book here.

The Raclette Igloo invites Canberrans to experience a French tradition of melting your own cheese with your loved ones. Set inside a transparent ‘igloo’ beneath the stars, your party will be supplied with a selection of charcuterie, pickles and potatoes to melt your Raclette cheese over. Plus, mulled wine to wash the meal down, a fire pit, and some wood to keep you warm.

Soda Jerk presents: Hello Dankness

When: Thursday 22 June, from 6 pm
Where: Arc Cinema, McCoy Circuit, Acton
Cost: $10 to $12; book here.

Hello Dankness cuts together hundreds of film samples with classic Broadway tunes in this rogue retelling of American history and politics between 2016 and 2021. From the minds of New York-based artistic duo Soda Jerk, this self-described ‘suburban stoner musical’ features hot dogs debating the culture wars, trash cans preaching QAnon, zombies rallying for revolution and more.

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