Melbourne is the undisputed events capital of Australia and the madness of March confirms this accolade with gusto.
From fashion and flowers, to Formula 1® and fine wine, the world’s most liveable city has something for everyone in the coming weeks.
Global events including the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix, Melbourne Food & Wine Festival and Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival are back bigger and better than ever, joined by theatrical productions Priscilla - Queen of the Desert and Beautiful: the Carole King Musical.
Ballarat leads the way in Victoria’s regions, with White Night descending on the Goldfields city before further instalments in Geelong and Bendigo later this year.
An extraordinary 71 events are currently listed with Visit Victoria for the month of March, capturing sport, arts and culture, dining experiences and the theatre, with something to entice every visitor.
Here are some of the highlights:
Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival
Royal Exhibition Building
The Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival is an annual celebration of fashion, beauty, business and creative endeavour for everyone to enjoy.
Established in 1997, the event stimulates and celebrates the Australian fashion industry whilst providing employment, networking and professional development opportunities for fashion, beauty, design, creative, marketing and retail industry professionals.
A true feast for the senses, the Festival presents the most stylish week-long entertainment on offer including world-class runway shows featuring Australia's established and emerging designers, state-of-the-art production, beauty workshops, industry seminars, forums, live entertainment and much more.
Melbourne Food & Wine Festival
Melbourne and Victoria’s regions
In 2018, the internationally acclaimed Melbourne Food and Wine Festival presented by Bank of Melbourne (MFWF) will shine a global spotlight on Victoria’s world-class food and wine industries.
With the theme of 'Community' more than 250,000 food and wine lovers are expected to gather across the state for the 26th Festival.
Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix
There is only one race the whole world is watching. The Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix is the ultimate playground for the world’s biggest stars. The fastest cars in the world are set once again to tear up the Albert Park Grand Prix Circuit at the 2018 season opener. Australia’s very own Daniel Ricciardo will vie for a podium spot in front of his home crowd.
Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show
Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens
All five senses will be on high alert at the 23rd annual Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show when the Southern Hemisphere’s largest and most loved horticultural event returns for five days at the heritage listed Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens.
The aromatic event attracts floral fanatics and gardening enthusiasts, home improvement, DIY and renovation buffs, as well as families exploring creative Cubby Houses and enjoying floral face painting.
The 2018 show features international talent headlining the 2018 Show Garden line up; the Boutique Gardens Competition; the RMIT floral fashion competition; floral artist design installations; student design competitions; daily floral workshops; a brand new bridal exhibit; daily demos from industry experts; floral inspired High Teas; the Cubby House Challenge and an edible garden arena.
White Night Ballarat
After the enormously successful inaugural White Night Ballarat in 2017, it will once again transform the historic regional centre again in 2018.
Inspired by the international Nuit Blanche movement that began in Paris in 2002 and came to Australia as White Night Melbourne in 2013, White Night Ballarat is a free, cultural event from 7:00pm to 2:00am– the first of its kind in regional Australia.
It is the city as we know it, but reimagined and transformed under the ephemeral cloak of night. A night where the surreal seems real, White Night Ballarat is a rare opportunity to experience the city in a different light. The event will weave a spell over the city centre, transforming the impossible into the possible through installation, lighting, exhibitions, street performances, film, music, dance and interactive events.
Melbourne International Comedy Festival
from 28 March
Forget the doom, gloom and stresses of the modern world – the Melbourne International Comedy Festival brings three and a half weeks of wholehearted happiness to all corners of the city.
As Australia’s largest provider of laughs, Melbourne Comedy Festival leaves no stone unturned (or un-tickled) with free family entertainment all school holidays, hundreds of the world’s funniest presenting stellar shows each evening and a late-night Festival Club that keeps the vibe alive through to the wee hours.
National Gallery of Victoria
until April 15
The inaugural NGV Triennial presents an unprecedented, large-scale exhibition of international art, design and architecture to the National Gallery of Victoria.
Free and exclusive to Melbourne, the NGV Triennial showcases major works by more than 100 artists and designers from 32 countries. Participating artists and designers explore some of the critical issues of our time through practices embracing cutting edge technologies, from 3D printing to robotics, as well as performance, film, painting, drawing, installation and fashion design, tapestry and sculpture.
Priscilla - Queen of the Desert
until April 15
The iconic hit musical has more glitter than ever, featuring a dazzling array of more than 500 award-winning costumes, 200 headdresses and a non-stop parade of dance-floor classics.
Based on the Oscar-winning film, Priscilla is the hilarious adventure of three friends who hop aboard a battered old bus bound for Alice Springs to put on the show of a lifetime. Their epic journey is a heart-warming story of self-discovery, sassiness and acceptance.
After winning a glittering array of international awards on Broadway, the West End, Europe and Asia, Simon Phillips’ spectacular production Priscilla Queen of the Desert returns to Australia in 2018 for its 10th anniversary celebration tour.
Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
Her Majesty’s Theatre
until 2 June
Long before she was Carole King, chart-topping music legend, she was an ordinary girl with extraordinary talent. Her music would become the soundtrack to a generation.
She fought her way into the record industry as a teenager and sold her first hit, Will You Love Me Tomorrow, when she was just seventeen. By the time she was twenty, she was writing number ones for the biggest acts in rock ‘n’ roll, including The Drifters, The Shirelles, Aretha Franklin and The Monkees.
But it wasn’t until her personal life began to crack that she managed to find her own voice and step into the spotlight.
Beautiful is the inspiring true story of King’s journey from schoolgirl to superstar; from her relationship with husband and song-writing partner Gerry Goffin, their close friendship and playful rivalry with fellow song-writing duo Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, to her remarkable rise to stardom.
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