During 2021, lockdowns or increased restrictions caused by COVID-19 have typically occurred just prior to or during school holidays. With the annual Brisbane Festival taking place during the month of September, which is when the Spring School Holidays are held, precedent was not on their side this year. But in some really good news for the performing arts industry, despite some program changes prior to the event, Brisbane Festival was able to go ahead as planned, and concluded tonight with the delights of Riverfire.
Pitched as the “largest fireworks display Brisbane has seen in two years”, Queenslanders were able to enjoy Riverfire from either one of several vantage points across the Brisbane River or viewing a live broadcast on Channel Nine with a specially curated playlist simulcast on Triple M.
Two tonnes of fireworks were launched off eight city building rooftops, two bridges and five barges on the Brisbane River spanning South Bank to Kangaroo Point and the Story Bridge. More than 25 pyrotechnicians and 50 production staff worked with Foti Fireworks deliver the shows.
For those eager for next year’s festivities, pencil in 2 September 2022 to 24 September 2022, and await the official Brisbane Festival 2022 program going public early next year.
(A Selection of) Highlights Shared By Brisbane Festival
- Brisbane Festival’s 2021 program featured 654 performances across 222 locations, including Street Serenades performances in each of Brisbane’s 190 suburbs.
- The Festival commissioned 17 brand-new works, hosted 16 world premieres and programmed 16 First Nations-led productions.
- More than 1,100 local artists and art workers were employed throughout the Festival, including 155 First Nations artists.
- This year saw two new Festival precincts emerge – BOQ Festival Garden at South Bank, incorporating the versatile South Bank Piazza, and Northshore Hamilton, home of Brisbane’s Art Boat, The Warehouse performance space and ENESS’s large-scale inflatable installations.
- One of the Festival’s most-anticipated works, the world premiere of Trent Dalton’s Boy Swallows Universe, adapted for the stage by Tim McGarry, set the box office alight. The season was extended three times, and according to Brisbane Festival, was “Queensland Theatre’s biggest-selling show in its 50-plus year history and its most technically ambitious and complex show to date”.
Jump to page two for statements from key stakeholders from Brisbane Festival and the Government.