News & events > Festival 2018 launched to complement Commonwealth Games in Australia
19 Feb 2018

Festival 2018 launched to complement Commonwealth Games in Australia


Festival 2018 - a 12-day arts and culture festival has been launched to accompany the XXI Commonwealth Games GC2018 held on Australia's Gold Coast, Brisbane April 4-15 2018. 

The festival has been programmed in the form of three acts: Encounters, Change and Aspire. The three themes are threaded through the program, which includes more than 1,000 performances from music to theatre, circus, dance, visual art and film.

Inspired by sand, sport and shared values, Festival 2018 will leave footprints on the Gold Coast for years to come, according to two creatives behind the 12-day arts and culture festival.

“This is the only major arts festival in the world where you can see everything in your boardshorts,” Festival 2018 Creative Director Yaron Lifschitz told

Lifschitz, Festival 2018 Creative Director Kate Fell and Bleach* Festival Artistic Director Louise Bezzina form the creative brain power behind the 12-day program of arts and cultural events at GC2018.  

The program is shaped by two key objectives.

“One is about extending the Games experience beyond the stadium, and that was our goal first and foremost,” said Fell.

“Giving people a really great, very vibrant 12-day festival where things are outside, at the beaches and parks and streets so you really feel that this city comes alive in those 12 days. That’s the absolute overarching thing.

“But equally for us, it was just as important for the city to feel that real transformation happen. That meant not just bringing in shows from overseas and putting them on a stage, but really investing in the local culture and artists and allowing a whole range of Gold Coast people to have that experience of being involved in work and creating it, participating and performing so that was really important as well.”

“I think the Games is one of those moments that can help transform the arts and cultural life of the city.”

A major sporting event like the Commonwealth Games provides a platform for sport and art to come together, a natural connection, Fell rationalised, but the sport’s influence on the performances on stage might not be what you expect.

The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) will welcome more than 6,600 athletes and team officials from 70 Commonwealth nations and territories to the Gold Coast and event cities Brisbane, Cairns and Townsville, to share in the celebration of sport, entertainment and culture.

The largest sporting event to be staged in Australia this decade, GC2018 will feature the largest integrated sports program in Commonwealth Games history, comprising 18 sports and seven para-sports.

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