Epic and adventurous programming was the signature of David Sefton’s second annual Adelaide Festival, with a program of outstanding theatre, dance, music, film, visual arts events and the free Adelaide Writers’ Week.
Adelaide Festival Corporation Chair Richard Ryan AO said, “As evidenced by the critical acclaim and overwhelming public response to the program, I say without hesitation this is the best Adelaide Festival in ten years, even better than David’s first.”
Box office revenue exceeded target, delivering a total income in excess of $2.3 million across 39 ticketed events. Whilst final attendances for all 50 Adelaide Festival events are still being collated, it is anticipated they will exceed 348,000, the highest festival attendance in four years. The festival is projected to generate a total economic benefit in excess of $22.5 million (excluding WOMADelaide).
Adelaide Festival Chief Executive Karen Bryant said, “Our festival-goers have seen some truly unique and sophisticated work of the highest quality, including large-scale productions exclusive to Adelaide. Our audiences consistently choose to visit South Australia because of the Festival, with 29% of all ticket buyers from interstate and overseas. I want to thank our wonderful Festival staff for delivering one of the milestone Festivals in our history.”
The 2014 program delivered a unique selection of exclusive benchmark events, such as the six-hour critically acclaimed Roman Tragedies; a never to be repeated four-night program Zorn in Oz with John Zorn and 36 of New York’s finest improvising musicians alongside Elision Ensemble and Adelaide Symphony Orchestra; Ilan Volkov’s Tectonics Adelaide, a two concert experimental music program; Unsound Adelaide, an electronic and experimental music program, featuring the Australian debut performance of Stars of the Lid; and Matthew Barney’s controversial River of Fundament.
Adelaide Writers’ Week, under the direction of Laura Kroetsch again attracted capacity crowds, who immersed themselves in the insight, wisdom, humour and pathos of authors Eleanor Catton, Marcus Chown, Margaret Drabble, Richard Flanagan, Elizabeth Gilbert, Hannah Kent, Alexander McCall Smith and Diarmaid MacCulloch.
The mammoth visual arts program featured the 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart – curated by Nick Mitzevich; Worlds in Collision: Adelaide International 2014, curated by Richard Grayson and Four Rooms curated by Troy-Anthony Baylis.
“This is without doubt one of the most diverse and exciting programs I’ve ever had the pleasure of presenting. 2014 will be considered a landmark festival that will be talked about for years to come,” Artistic Director David Sefton said.
The 2014 Adelaide Festival 2014 featured:
- Over 150 performances across 50 events (including 14 theatre, three dance, 19 music events, one film event, alongside the visual art exhibitions, Artists’ Week, Adelaide Writers’ Week, a festival club and one educational event)
- 29 Australian premieres – 25 from the performance program (nine theatre, 15 music and one dance) and four from the visual arts program
- 29 Adelaide exclusive events – (16 music, six theatre, one dance, one film and five visual arts)
- Two shows (AM I and Shadow King) co-commissioned with other festivals
- Around 1000 artists and writers came to Adelaide from countries including: Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Malaysia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Portugal, Reunion, Russia, Scotland, Spain, Syria, The Netherlands, Tunisia, United Kingdom, United States of America and Zimbabwe