There is a compelling line-up of events to keep your mind, curiosity and appetite sated this month. From thought-provoking talks to food festivals and a new crop of exhibitions, the city is championing variety in July. Here is what’s on in Brisbane this month.
Say bienvenue to another Frenchy edition of Le Festival. Celebrating all aspects of French culture, this festival will take over the South Bank Cultural Forecourt for two days. There will be plenty of food stalls, as well as an entertainment and live music program, and a special kids’ section.
6–8 July at South Bank
Star Wars: A New Hope
Queensland Symphony Orchestra will perform the score to Star Wars: A New Hope live to a screening of the film, led by conductor Benjamin Northey. The 1977 film’s iconic music captured the essence of its mythic story, taking out the Academy Award for Best Original Score, and this is a rare chance to see the film on the big screen.
7 July at Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre
Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
Carole King’s rise to stardom and the musical catalogue that ensued is celebrated in this inspiring musical. As one of the year’s most anticipated shows, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical traces King’s journey from schoolgirl to a worldwide star who finally found her true voice. It features hits including ‘Natural Woman’, ‘I Feel The Earth Move’ and ‘Locomotion’.
We're giving away a double pass this musical! Enter here for a chance to win.
13 July to 19 August at QPAC
Proving that South-east Queensland is one of Australia’s most exciting food regions, Regional Flavours (pictured) will present a two-day gourmet line-up of markets, cooking demonstrations and entertainment. Meet celebrity chefs including Sarah Wilson and Katherine Sabbath, eat and drink at more than 80 stalls, and unwind to live music at River Quay.
21–22 July at South Bank
The White Album Concert
The While Album Concert features one of history's most iconic albums, performed by Australian musical icons. See Chris Cheney, Phil Jamieson, Tim Rogers and Josh Pyke come together to celebrate the 50th anniversary of this landmark album. They'll be supported by a 17-piece rock orchestra as they perform the entire album in track order.
19–20 July at QPAC
Scandinavian Film Festival
Scandinavian culture has a mysterious intrigue to it. This year's Scandinavian Film Festival opens with Icelandic black comedy Under the Tree (and it's no mean feat to produce a world-class film in a country of 300,000 inhabitants) and continues with a line-up from across Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland. Special events include the Australian premiere of Amateurs, which won Best Nordic Film at this year's Göteborg Film Festival in Sweden.
19 July to 5 August at Palace Barracks
Lysa and The Freeborn Dames
This fierce female-led dramedy is inspired by the original battle of the sexes, Aristophanes’ Lysistrata. Lysa and The Freeborn Dames is billed as 'Aristophanes crossed with a girl group power-ballad served with a plate of your Grandma’s best CWA scones', and it's about to make its world premiere at La Boite.
21 July to 11 August at La Boite
World Press Photo Exhibition
If journalism is the first rough draft of history, then this exhibition is a compelling visual compendium of the legacy left by the past year. The World Press Photo Exhibition celebrates the work of top press photographers, photojournalists and documentary photographers, who skillfully capture important (and intimate) moments from around the globe.
Until 22 July at Brisbane Powerhouse
The Walkley Foundation’s journalism festival will present two days of thought-provoking in-conversation events from journalists who've travelled the world and seen it all. Storyology speakers include photojournalist Nick Moir, local writer Bri Lee, cartoonist Sean Leahy, journalist Peter Greste and The Trace podcast's Rachael Brown.
See this chat with Bri Lee to find out which Storyology sessions she is most excited for and the advice she has for aspiring writers.
27–28 July at Palace Barracks Cinemas
Synergy is an intimate studio season that will see Queensland Ballet’s next crop of stars feature in a series of contemporary and neo-classical works. A number of new works have been developed for the season, and the studio will also be open for exclusive masterclasses with the company’s artistic and creative teams.
27 July to 4 August at Thomas Dixon Centre
We Will Rock You
In Venice in 1996, Robert De Niro bumped into Queen musicians Brian May and Roger Taylor, and a new musical was born (the idea for which, must be credited to De Niro’s daughter). The result is a futurist comedy written by Ben Elton to Queen songs. More than 15 million people around the world have seen We Will Rock You, and that number will continue to edge upwards as Brisbane Arts Theatre brings the story to their Petrie Terrace stage.
Until 28 July at Brisbane Arts Theatre
Around the World in 80 Days
Around the World in 80 Days is a stage comedy about a madcap adventure to circumnavigate the globe in just 80 days. Throw in a Scotland Yard detective, a mistaken identity and a bank robbery (all of which unravel in Monty Python-like fashion) and you have an idea of the frenetic madness that ensues during the show.
24–25 July at QUT Gardens Theatre
Patricia Piccinini: Curious Affection
GOMA continues its ambitious exhibition schedule with its Patricia Piccinini retrospective, Curious Affection. The exhibition occupies the gallery’s entire ground floor, featuring many of the artist's most recognisable works alongside immersive multi-sensory installations and a large-scale inflatable sculpture.
Until 5 August at GOMA
Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives
Venture deep inside the pyramids of Ancient Egypt at Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives. Presenting six mummies, the exhibition offers insight into their lives using CT scanning technology and more than 200 artefacts from the British Museum’s Egyptian collections. The final After Dark event for this exhibition is also happening this month.
Until 16 August at Queensland Museum
A little-known fact about abstraction is that female artists were instrumental in its development. Celebrating this artform and the women who helped to shape it, QUT Art Museum’s new exhibition Abstraction showcases how Australian female artists have pushed abstraction further and kept it relevant to contemporary audiences.
Until 26 August at QUT Art Museum
Life in Irons: Brisbane’s Convict Stories
There’s so much documented convict history from Botany Bay that it’s easy to forget Brisbane has its own convict past. Museum of Brisbane’s latest exhibition Life in Irons: Brisbane’s Convict Stories presents an account of what life was like for the 3,000 men and women imprisoned at the Moreton Bay penal colony. It features artefacts and documents such as The Book of Trials, which chronicles the crimes and related punishments from the time.
Until 28 October at Museum of Brisbane
Got kids to entertain over the July school holidays? See this list of things to do over the winter school holidays for a range of events to keep them occupied.