Melbourne Festival 2013The Melbourne Festival is to open this evening with a free public theatre and music event in Federation Square.

Tanderrum and Creation will welcome patrons to this year’s festival, as the annual event enters its twenty-eighth year. Tanderrum, from the Ilbijerri Theatre Company, will see elders from five Aboriginal nations in the Melbourne region come together in a mix of music, performance and storytelling. Creation meanwhile is singer-songwriter Archie Roach’s latest offering, and will continue the opening night festivities.

Other featured performances at this year’s festival include a one-off, biographically-inspired performance by award-winning singer Gurrumul. He will be joined on stage by Sarah Blasko at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl tomorrow night. This weekend will also see the Fabulous Beast Dance Theatre will present a reinterpretation of composer Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, combined with a unique performance of Petrushka.

Clannad is set to perform at this year's Melbourne Festival (Image: Melbourne Festival)

Clannad is set to perform at this year’s Melbourne Festival (Image: Melbourne Festival)

Dance is also the feature of Sun, a contemporary piece from the Hofesh Shechter Company in the UK, while acclaimed Irish folk-fusion band Clannad will perform at the Melbourne Arts Centre on the 26th October. Other highlights include Brief Encounter, a theatre production from Britain’s Kneehigh Theatre, and the raw, confronting Teenage Riot from Belgian theatre company Ontroerend Goed.

This year’s Melbourne festival runs until the 27th October and features over one hundred events of music, theatre, visual art, lectures, film and dance across thirty-four venues around Melbourne.

For more information, or to reserve a spot at any ticketed events, please visit Melbourne Festival’s website.

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