Geelong Arts Centre is thrilled to welcome visitors to the eagerly awaited grand opening of its transformed Little Malop Street building, marking a significant milestone after more than four years of visionary design, construction, and collaboration.
Set to take place from Saturday 19 August, this $140 million redevelopment project, backed by the Victorian Government, welcomes a new era of creativity, culture, and entertainment for the region.
“Victoria is the creative state and world class facilities like this show that world-class creativity can be found well beyond Melbourne,” said Minister for Creative Industries, Steve Dimopoulos.
“Geelong Arts Centre of old helped kickstart the careers of Rachel Griffiths, Guy Pearce and Dave Thornton and now this transformed facility will inspire a whole new generation.”
Geelong Arts Centre’s Grand Opening Festival promises an exhilarating line-up of talent that will captivate audiences and bring a burst of excitement to Geelong’s cultural landscape.
As the curtains rise on this remarkable occasion, visitors will be treated to an unforgettable series of performances and events spanning music, comedy, and theatre.
The four-week celebration will feature range of free and ticketed events for community members, including a vibrant community open day showcasing local talent, backstage tours, and more.
The Grand Opening Festival embraces a diverse spectrum of traditional and contemporary art forms, reflecting Geelong Arts Centre’s commitment to fostering creativity and cultural enrichment.
“The Grand Opening Festival marks the culmination of years of dedication, passion, and community collaboration, reaffirming Geelong Arts Centre’s commitment to extraordinary cultural expression for the region, Victoria, and beyond!” said Geelong Arts Centre CEO & Creative Director, Joel McGuinness.
After many years of community and stakeholder consultation, the design of the Geelong Arts Centre Little Malop Street Redevelopment has been an extraordinary collaboration.
Coming together as co-designers, Geelong Arts Centre, ARM Architecture, Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation and the wider First Nations community have worked together to welcome Country into the very fabric of the design and found opportunities for deep collaboration.
Together, they have woven traditional stories of the land, language, water and sky, and the colours and textures of Moonah trees, ochre, and granite stone throughout the layers of the building, and look forward to a bright future celebrating diversity in all forms.
“The opening of Geelong Arts Centre is the culmination of the collaboration between the arts community and Traditional Owners,” said Member for Geelong, Christine Couzens MP.
“This venue enriches our region with an unparalleled hub of arts and culture, and First Peoples culture, and the journey to arrive at this milestone has showcased the remarkable dedication of the Geelong community.”
Entertainment lovers will be dazzled by The Story House; a multi-format 550-seat theatre expanding to 850 in ‘live gig’ mode and The Open House; a 250-seat contemporary hybrid venue featuring a giant door connecting the space to Little Malop Street Plaza, as well as dynamic and colourful foyer and bar facilities alongside a range of event spaces, including alfresco dining on Little Malop Street.
Geelong Arts Centre is a celebration of artistic excellence and is deeply committed to enriching the whole region. As it embarks on this exciting new chapter, they are dedicated to providing access to inspirational arts experiences, nurturing creativity, and creating community.
Geelong Arts Centre welcomes everyone to the Grand Opening Festival inviting audiences to experience the vibrant cultural tapestry of Geelong and ensuring that the benefits of artistic expression continue to resonate throughout the community for years to come.
To explore Geelong Arts Centre’s Grand Opening Festival, visit: www.geelongartscentre.org.au for details.
Images: Geelong Arts Centre – The Story House theatre – photo by Peter Foster | Geelong Arts Centre – Exterior Western Facade – Artwork by Kait James – photo by Peter Foster