Events You Need to Know About This July

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Jun 18, 2018

by SAMANTHA O'BRIEN, Editorial Coordinator

This month’s top events, plus a sneak peek at what’s on in August.



Various dates 16-28 July and 28-29 August | Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne 

Pink’s Australian tour continues as the pop icon rocks up in Melbourne, where she’ll perform 11 shows.

West Side Story

27-28 July | Arts Centre Melbourne

In true surround sound, the remastered Academy Award-winning musical will play on a big screen while the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra performs Leonard Bernstein’s famous score.

Julius Caesar

18-28 July | Arts Centre Melbourne

Friends, Romans, countrymen… you know how this one goes. Shakespeare’s play about the fall of Julius Caesar hits Melbourne as part of its nationwide tour.

Colony: Australia 1770-1861/Frontier Wars

Until 15 July | National Gallery of Victoria, Federation Square, Melbourne 

Don’t miss this free dual exhibition that offers fascinating parallel perspectives on the European settlement of Australia. One looks at life in the colonies while the other focuses on the impact on Australia’s First Peoples.

Vikings: Beyond the Legend

Until 26 August | Melbourne Museum

Straight from Stockholm’s Swedish History Museum, this collection consists of more than 450 artefacts, including swords that date back to 700 CE.

Next Month: Giselle

30 August-8 September | Arts Centre Melbourne

A highlight of this hugely popular ballet about love and forgiveness is the “white” act, during which the stage is transformed into a haunting forest filled with spirits. See what all the fuss is about during this limited season.


Céline Dion

27-28 July | Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney Olympic Park

The Grammy-winning singer’s last Australian tour may have been a decade ago but it’s all coming back to us now. The spectacle kicks off in Sydney before continuing on to Brisbane, Perth and Melbourne.


18 July-31 August | Sydney Opera House 

Verdi’s epic is transformed as Italian director Davide Livermore’s high-tech sets breathes new life into the classic drama. 

John Mawurndjul

6 July-23 September | Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney 

This exhibition showcases the work of John Mawurndjul, a Kuninjku elder and master bark painter, created over a 35-year period.

Splendour in the Grass

20-22 July | North Byron Parklands, Byron Bay

Music lovers will converge on Byron Bay for a line-up that includes local legends Gang of Youths and Hilltop Hoods as well as Lorde and Pulitzer Prize-winning rapper and headline act Kendrick Lamar.

James Cameron: Challenging the Deep

Until February 2019 | Australian National Maritime Museum, Sydney

Drawing on the award-winning director’s many ocean dives in his Deepsea Challenger submersible, this exhibition uses projections and props to take visitors down below.

Next Month: Trevor Noah

29-30 August | ICC Sydney

He dishes up political analysis as easily as he delivers punchlines on American late-night favourite The Daily Show. Now the South African-born comedian brings his stand-up tour to Sydney after stints in Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane.


Cartier: The Exhibition

Until 22 July | National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

It’s your last chance to delight in this special exhibition that features more than 300 pieces of jewellery, some of which have been worn by the most photographed women in the world, including the Duchess of Cambridge, Princess Grace of Monaco and Elizabeth Taylor.

Dark Emu

26-28 July | Canberra Theatre Centre

Inspired by Bruce Pascoe’s book of the same name, Dark Emu is directed by Stephen Page (who choreographed Bennelong) and uses a series of contemporary dance stories to explore the intricate relationships between our nation’s flora and fauna. 


The Sleeping Beauty

6-12 July | Adelaide Festival Centre

Gleaming sets, lavish costumes and one of Tchaikovsky’s most famous scores... Princess Aurora’s fairytale world has rarely looked or sounded as good as it does in artistic director David McAllister’s latest production, in Adelaide for an exclusive season.

Diane Arbus: American Portraits

14 July-30 September | Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide

Photographer Diane Arbus made visible subjects who were typically forgotten by society. In the process she created some of the most influential portraiture in postwar America. It’s the latest stop on this exhibition’s tour from the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra.

Next Month: Priscilla Queen of the Desert

From 19 August | Adelaide Festival Centre

Celebrate the musical’s 10th anniversary road trip around the country by cheering on the cast as they belt out dance anthems including Hot Stuff, I Will Survive and I Love the Nightlife.



21, 24, 26, 28 July | His Majesty’s Theatre, Perth

Follow legendary femme fatale Carmen as she seduces soldier Don José in Georges Bizet’s passionate opera.

Winter Night Tours

Until 31 August | Perth Observatory

The night sky above Western Australia, resplendent with constellations and just-visible galaxies, is at its best during the chiller months. These two-hour tours provide an expert guide to the stars and conclude with a steaming mug of hot chocolate.

Image: Andrew Lockwood

Katy Perry

24-25 July | Perth Arena

The Witness tour has landed and there are sure to be fireworks. The perennially popular songstress kicks off in Perth before heading to Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney.

Next Month: Good Food & Wine Show

24-26 August | Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre

Australia’s favourite food festival is back with a stellar line-up, including The Chef and the Butcher columnists, Colin Fassnidge and Anthony Puharich, who will discuss the benefits of nose-to-tail eating.



27-28 July | Palace Barracks Cinema, Brisbane

The Walkley Foundation gathers some of Australia’s top media stars, including former foreign correspondent Peter Greste, to explore and discuss why journalism matters in times of uncertainty.

Noosa Alive!

20-29 July | Various venues, Noosa

Regional Queensland’s premier arts and culture festival is back with a jam-packed schedule that includes actor and comedian Stephen Curry and a collaboration between singer Katie Noonan’s band, Elixir, and cartoonist Michael Leunig, whose poems have been turned into songs by the band.

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical

From 13 July | QPAC, Brisbane

This show focuses on the American singer-songwriter’s early life up to the release of her extraordinary album, Tapestry, one of the bestselling records of all time.

Next Month: Ekka

10-19 August | Brisbane Showgrounds

The Royal Queensland Show (affectionately known as Ekka) has the best of the Sunshine State in one place, including livestock, food and wine, as well as rides, entertainment and a pavilion filled to the brim with showbags.


Festival Darwin Lions’ Beer Can Regatta

22 July | Mindil Beach, Darwin

It’s recycling or perhaps upcycling, depending on your perspective: watch competitors turn empty cans and milk bottles into an armada of seagoing vessels, with varying degrees of success.

Next Month: Darwin Turf Club Gala Ball

4 August | Little Mindil Beach, Darwin

Gather under the stars on the lawn at Little Mindil Beach and toast the lead-up to the 2018 Darwin Cup, with plenty of food, wine and stellar entertainment, including a performance by Darwin-born Jessica Mauboy, fresh from her dazzling turn at the Eurovision Song Contest.


Huon Valley Mid-Winter Fest

13-15 July | Willie Smith’s Apple Shed, Grove

Honour the region’s apple-picking past at this lively festival, which includes cider, food, folklore and the ancient tradition of wassailing: singing to the trees to promote a good harvest for the coming year.

Tchaikovsky’s Sixth Symphony

28 July | Federation Concert Hall, Hobart

Pianist Simon Trpčeski makes his Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra debut in a program that also includes Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and the “love scene” from Berlioz’s beautiful Roméo et Juliette symphony.


Until 22 April 2019 | Mona, Berriedale

In postwar Germany, a group of artists started an avant-garde minimalist movement that used motion and light to create works of art. Key pieces are now being shown in Australia for the first time, including some by the Zero movement’s founders, Heinz Mack and Otto Piene.

Next month: Tasmanian Whisky Week

13-19 August | Various locations, Tasmania 

Sniff and sip your way around the state as the Apple Isle’s leading distilleries, bars, barns and restaurants open their doors for a week of tastings. See Ancestral Spirit Beings Collecting Honey (1985-1987) and other works by John Mawurndjul at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia.

Top image: Rony Alwin

SEE ALSO: Qantas Introduces In-Flight Meditation