More than 500,000 people flocked to White Night Melbourne on Saturday 22 February to experience an array of events and activities which transformed more than eight city blocks, as people spilled into the streets, laneways, landmarks and cultural institutions to participate.
“White Night Melbourne is a testament to the city’s ability to stage and support major international events,” said Premier Denis Napthine.
“The event was a phenomenal success with people of all ages enjoying an incredible night with art at its heart. It really was a night like no other and celebrated what makes Melbourne the world’s most liveable city.”
From dusk to dawn, the city’s streets and laneways hummed with live music, light installations, roving performers and art. Melbourne’s world-renowned cultural institutions – including Arts Centre Melbourne, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, the National Gallery of Victoria and the State Library of Victoria and Melbourne Museum – welcomed huge crowds throughout the night.
With its expanded 2014 program, White Night Melbourne offered more than 100 events and activities including Moonlight Synchro bringing together elegant formations of swimmers in a dramatic, atmospheric setting as teams from Victorian Synchronised Swimming transformed the much-loved Melbourne City Baths into a magical world of synchronicity and moonlight, while City buildings were bathed in light as Wonderland projections created by the Electric Canvas transformed Flinders Street on a grand scale, taking over surfaces across whole streetscapes.
People strolled through Purple Rain, a breathtaking visual and sound installation created by French artist Pierre Ardouvin, referencing the high kitsch rock ‘n’ roll film and song by musician Prince; as Melbourne’s hip indie bands played to their biggest audiences ever as a spectrum of artists, ranging in style from psychedelic pop to dance electric, country/folk to metronomic percussion, exploded on the main stage.
One of the world’s leading animators in biomedical visualisation – science artist Drew Berry – morphed the State Library of Victoria’s incredible domed La Trobe Reading Room into a giant microscope, uncovering the nanoscopic world at the forefront of scientific research in Molecular Kaleidoscope.
An ensemble of international and Australian artists created innocuous creatures and atmospheres in the historic botanical Queen Victoria Gardens, inviting visitors to wander through immersive works of light, film, sculpture and music, as revellers danced the night away in Federation Square in a repeat of the 2013 highlight, I Could Have Danced All Night – a fun-filled extravaganza featured 12 dance styles as the team from Ausdance Victoria guided people through the moves.
“We want to thank all the people and organisations who contributed to the success of White Night Melbourne 2014, it was a fantastic night and 500,000 to 550,000 people attended. We also want to thank the people of Melbourne who turned out in big numbers and enjoyed the night,” said White Night Melbourne Creative Director Andrew Walsh.
White Night Melbourne is a State Government of Victoria initiative inspired by the international network of Nuit Blanche cities around the world. It showcases Melbourne’s music, art, theatre, sport, fashion, film, design and performance over a 12 hour period from 7pm to 7am.
For more information, visit: www.whitenightmelbourne.com.au for details.
Image: Tattoo City at National Gallery of Victoria