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Brisbane's Top 20 Festivals in 2019

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by Barry J (subscribe)
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Published January 12th 2019
The best things in life are festive
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Join festive festivalgoers (by St Jerome's Laneway Festival)


Brisbane, one of the world's most beautiful cities, has the best weather for outdoor parties. Our bright summer sunshine and mild, cool winters bring festivals to Queensland throughout the year.

In 2019, Brisbane is bursting with festivals, celebrating music, dance, visual arts, theatre, film, food and wine.

Fill your year with fun book these festivals in your 2019 diary, listed in order.


St Jerome's Laneway Festival 2 February 2019 free and ticketed events
Beginning in an intimate laneway bar in 2004, St Jerome's Laneway Festival is now an annual musical celebration spanning 7 cities in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore.

The Festival is unique for a fun atmosphere, encouraging local community expression, leading to music which quickly becomes essential listening for the mainstream.

Previous acts have included Architecture in Helsinki, The Presets, and Clare Bowditch.

In 2019, Aussies, Gang Of Youths and indie rock singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett are the headline acts, with New Yorkers Parquet Courts returning with punk rock.

View the program at the St Jerome's Laneway Festival.


Red Hot Summer 10 February 2019 ticketed event
One of the hottest places in summer, Brisbane is the best place for red hot rock and roll.

The Red Hot Summer festival brings our biggest local musicians across Australia on a grand tour. Hear Aussie rock legends, Jimmy Barnes, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, The Living End, Diesel, Richard Clapton & Chocolate Starfish perform all our rock and roll favourites.

View the program at Red Hot Summer.


Brisbane Comedy Festival 22 February to 24 March 2019 free and ticketed events
At the end of Feb, an epidemic of tickled funny bones infects Brisbane as over 60 Australian and international comedians become the medicos of mirth.

Every night in the Powerhouse and the City Hall, satire, character, cringe-worthy, improv and sketch comedy will amuse, shock and awe audiences fast enough to book tickets.

See Daniel Sloss, Danny Bhoy, Alex Ward, and Danielle Walker.

View the program at the Brisbane Comedy Festival.


CMC Rocks 14 to 17 March 2019 ticketed event
Ipswich hosts the southern hemisphere's biggest country and roots festival in March.

In 2019, Florida Georgia Line will headline a stacked lineup, including Kasey Chambers, Thomas Rhett, Troy Cassar-Daley, and Luke Combs.

Festival-goers can use public transport to travel from the city or camp nearby.

View the program, accommodation and transport options at CMC Rocks.


World Science Festival 20 to 24 March 2019 free and ticketed events
For kids of all ages, the magic of science, in all its forms, will be exhibited with our most entertaining researchers, educators and innovators.

Prepare for our future on the Red Planet atWe Will Be Martians.

Get your vaccinations before attending of Close Encounters of the Third Kind in concert, bring your stem cells for a chat with neuroscientist Pandemics and Epidemics.

Learn how to protect the Great Barrier Reef at Our Jewelled Seas.

View the program at the World Science Festival.

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Festive fireworks (by Queensland Tourism)


Ocean Film Festival 28 to 30 March 2019 ticketed event
Along Queensland's coastline, we're blessed with a spectacular array of natural and man-made wonders, from schools of tropical fish to vast coral reefs, playful dolphins, giant whales, and rusting shipwrecks.

You'll enter the ocean without getting wet as you're submerged in this series of films capturing the ocean in all its sublime beauty.

Be mesmerised by over 2 hours of sublime short films charting the ocean's pioneers, explorers and divers as they dive beneath the surface.

Visit the Ocean Film Festival website to submit your own film.

View the program at the Brisbane Powerhouse.


Supercell: Festival of Contemporary Dance 2 to 6 April 2019 ticketed events
During a ferocious tropical storm in Queensland, the Supercell Festival was born.

Just as the thunder and lightning brought a spectacle of rejuvenation, Supercell brings local and overseas dancers to Brisbane for a series of performances, workshops and parties.

In 2018, [MIS]CONCEIVE hit the main stage with Aboriginal and contemporary dance, hip hop and percussion to dramatic effect. The organisers are planning a program to match in 2019.

View the details at Supercell: Festival of Contemporary Dance.


Festival of Tibet 26 to 28 April 2019 free and ticketed events
The magical landscape and enigmatic people of Tibet are often at risk, from political and environmental dangers.

Despite this, or perhaps in response to it, a Tibetan ideal of non-violence and compassion has inspired millions of people to live according to these Buddhist values.

In April, you can enter Shangri-La, experiencing the cultural treasures previously only imagined in John Hilton's classic novel, Lost Horizon.

At the Brisbane Powerhouse, join the audience for a peace-themed concert, workshops and demonstrations of calligraphy, meditation, painting, the singing bowl.

View the program at the Festival of Tibet.


Banff Mountain Film Festival 1 to 6 May 2019 ticketed events
Conquer your fear of heights from the safety of a cinema seat as the best short films of mountain culture are broadcast onto giant theatre screens.

Experience the magic of the world's mountains. The Banff Mountain Film Festival captures awe-inspiring beauty on camera while exploring the cultural issues resulting from and solved by our exploration and habitation of these spiritual spaces.

At the Powerhouse Theatre, the award-winning films and audience favourites from the Banff Mountain Film Festival in Canada will also feature over 2 hours of Australian content.

View the program at the Banff Mountain Film FestivalGautama Buddha!

Celebrate the Buddha's birthday in Brisbane with peace and tranquillity.

On Southbank, there will be live music and cooking demos, delicious vegetarian food from pop-up stalls, cultural displays and talks, workshops and arts and crafts.

View the program at the LINK=http://www.buddhabirthdayfestival.com.au/]Buddha Birth Day Festival.


Anywhere Theatre Festival 9 to 26 May 2019 ticketed event
In over 500 performances hosted in 70 venues throughout Brisbane, comedy, opera, dance and theatre will entertain thousands of Brisbanites.

Enjoy unconventional pop-up events in the most unusual places, forever changing your memories of car parks, reservoirs and stairwells.

View the program at the Anywhere Theatre Festival.

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Festival food (by Queensland Tourism)


Queensland Cabaret Festival June 2019 ticketed events
Jazz entrances classical and rock & roll music lovers, fusing the serene with the energetic.

Cabaret is the sultry, smooth extension of the art form, tempting listeners to immerse themselves in the pleasurable sensations of music.

Join local and international performers in the intimate concert halls in the Brisbane Powerhouse.

View the program at the Queensland Cabaret Festival.


Le French Festival 5 to 7 July 2019 Free and ticketed events
Vive La France! Celebrate the principles of freedom, equality, fraternity during Brisbane's Bastille Day with French music, cuisine and chic culture.

Sample French wine and champagne while peeking into the latest style trends with catwalk fashion shows.

Learn the art of French living with master-classes to host the perfect dinner party, make pastry and chocolate, pair food and wine, enjoy impressionist art with wine, and cook Boeuf Bourguignon.

View the program at the Le French Festival.


Queensland Music Festival 5 to 28 July 2019 free and ticketed events
In 15 venues throughout Queensland, the QMF encourages and inspires local musicians to tell the stories of their communities through song.

All musical genres feature as rural and urban themes blend heavenly harmony.

An initiative of the Queensland Government, the QMF also funds scholarships, awards and touring programs to support local youth dreaming to become professional musicians.

View the program at the Queensland Music Festival.


Regional Flavours 20, 21 July 2019 free entry
Satisfy your hunger for local delights with a delicious spread of food and wine, using fresh regional produce.

Meet celebrity chefs, master tricky cooking challenges with master-classes, pack your pantry with purchases at the produce market while sipping local wines.

View the program at the Regional Flavours.


The Ekka - Royal Queensland Show 9 to 18 August 2019 ticketed event
Since 1876, the Ekka has showcased the best of Queensland's rural towns, farms and outback communities.
In 2019, the Ekka will bring the best of bush to Brisbane, with fresh produce, fashion, music concerts, whip-cracking, cooking demonstrations, country dancing, cuddly animals, homewares and outback art.

Children of all ages will enjoy the attractions, games, carnival food and sporting, media, chocolate and superhero showbags.

Each night ends with EkkaNITES. It's a colourful fireworks and stunt show, starring stunt motorbike and horse riders racing beneath overhead light show.

Visit the The Ekka - Royal Queensland Show to plan your day and book tickets.


Big Sound 3 to 6 September 2019 ticketed event
Go beyond the conventional in a festival featuring our most dynamic musicians, artists and creatives in Fortitude Valley.

Join parties, concerts, workshops, showcases and masterclasses. Hear the fresh sound of local talent before they hit stardom make your own noise in the Levi's Music Prize.

Hone your craft in the music tech and visual arts showcases, or tackle the tricky subjects of law, marketing and music video techniques in the masterclasses.

Visit the Big Sound for the full artist lineup and booking details.


Brisbane Festival 6 to 28 September 2019 free and ticketed events
For 3 weeks across the city, Brisbane parties with dance, theatre, classical and contemporary music, visual art and lecture events destined to disrupt the conventional.

Our city's festival has dynamic aims to be a fun feast as we look outward, inspiring new thinking in art, in Brisbane and in our lives.

Brisbane's biggest cultural event will again conclude with the spectacular Riverfire fireworks display.

View the program at the Brisbane Festival.


Oktoberfest October 2019 ticketed event
In the Brisbane Showgrounds, women can dress up in a dirndl, the traditional alpine dress, while men button up their lederhosen, knee-length leather breeches. In your stylish outfit attire, join Australia's largest celebration of German culture.

During Oktober, a Brisbane-based Bavaria will host boisterous singing and thigh-slapping dancing, yodelling, beard competitions, feats of strength and giant mugs of beer.

Devour traditional German and European cuisines, including pork knuckles, bratwurst and sauerkraut, strudel and Black Forest cake and the best chocolates in the world.

Children will enjoy the Kinder Zone's science, history and language exhibits between carnival rides.

View the program at the Oktoberfest.


Woodford Folk Festival December, 2019 to January, 2020 ticketed event
Over 100,000 people will escape the city during the New Year, partying with folk music at Woodford.

In over 400 acts, a festive village atmosphere emerges in the lush fields with Blues Roots concerts, cabaret, circus, comedy, visual art and indigenous and local theatre.

Mingle with the artists as you set up in campsites, caravans and home-stays in the village precinct. It's a unique treat where great food, drink and conversation are a constant pleasure.

View the program at the Woodford Folk Festival.


Which Brisbane festival is your best bet for 2019? Please let us know with a comment.

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Why? Enjoy the best of Festive Brisbane in 2019
When: All year!
Where: Throughout Brisbane
Cost: Plenty of free options
Your Comment
Thanks for doing all the research for us Barry. May I also suggest BrisAsia and Chinese Lunar New Year Festivals.
by May Cross (score: 3|5382) 264 days ago
The 4MBS Festival of Classics is Australia's biggest classical music festival - the 2019 Festival has 32 concerts in 15 venues in Brisbane and SE Qld over 6 weeks with over 700 classical musicians. 2019 is the 26th year of the Festival. All the musicians are Queenslanders.
by gary. (score: 0|4) 137 days ago
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