Docklands Firelight Festival returns for 2018

An explosive weekend of fireworks!

Enjoy an explosive weekend of fireworks, food, music and fun is set to draw thousands to Docklands as the annual Firelight Festival returns bigger and better in 2018.

The City of Melbourne has announced a packed program of events and activities for opening weekend celebrations from 29 June to 1 July.

Chair of the Prosperous City portfolio, Councillor Kevin Louey, said this year’s event will be three times the size, after a spectacular debut in 2017 cemented the festival on the Docklands calendar.

“This year we’re thinking big, with all of Victoria Harbour set to be transformed into a warm and inviting stage,” Cr Louey said.

“We’ll have nightly pyrotechnics, flame jets, fire drums, roving performers and incredible musicians alongside some of the best food Melbourne has to offer.

“Three giant wooden sculptures will also be cast adrift in Victoria Harbour and set ablaze to create an amazing visual for festival goers. It’s all about giving Melburnians a warm and engaging event to help ease the chill of the winter solstice.”

Melbourne-based artist Christian Patton has been engaged for the second year to create the giant wooden sculptures, representing a sun dial, hand and sun god.

Fire breathers and fire twirlers will provide roving entertainment, alongside live music from a punked-out New Orleans brass band, jazz performers, Gypsy beats and a one-man band.


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Firelight Festival Creative Director Gill Minervini said the winter solstice is a time for people to gather together and celebrate all that nature gives.

“Firelight Festival celebrates Melbourne’s winter and is a chance to rug up and get amongst a brilliantly eclectic range of musicians, performers and art. No two nights are the same, so be prepared,” Ms Minervini said.

“Nobody does winter like Melbourne and at Firelight Festival we celebrate everything that makes our winter hot! You don’t want to miss this, with bespoke performances, fireworks and the burning of giant sculptures on the water.”

While the Firelight Festival opening weekend is the main event, a range of epicurean activities will take place across Docklands throughout July.

A Speakeasy Series will invite Melburnians to experience some of Docklands most well-known haunts, while true Melbourne foodies will have plenty to choose from with Dining at Docklands and The Long Dinners series offering unique food experiences bursting with flavour.

Fireside Storytelling will also make a comeback, with special guest Jo Stanley telling stories from her literary series Play Like a Girl.

The 2018 Docklands Firelight Festival is part of the City of Melbourne’s annual Winter Campaign.


Opening Weekend
New Quay Promenade, Docklands

5pm – 10pm

29 June – 1 July

The fiery wonder of the Docklands Firelight Festival returns for 2018. Come down to New Quay Promenade for an event three times bigger than 2017. Experience a spectacular nightly pyrotechnic event, flame jets, fire drums, burning of wooden sculptures, surprise roving performers and eclectic music in bespoke settings.

The Long Dinners
Chiara, Collins Square

3 July and 31 July

Inspired by the long-table dining experiences from around the world, Docklands presents an exquisite culinary event in Collins Square. The Firelight festival Long Dinners will be held at Chiara, in celebration of extravagant winter merriment. The indulgent three-course event will introduce you to the rich flavours of Italy, while the night comes alive with fire performances.

Fireside Storytelling

Buluk Park and Library at the Dock
5 July

Gather the family by the fire for stories told by special guest Jo Stanley from her literary series Play like a Girl. This special storytelling event at Buluk Park will ignite the night, while you dine on delicious dishes from your own customised Docklands dining hamper.

Speakeasy Series

Hightail, Oscars Table, Tap831 and Watermark Docklands
10 July, 11 July, 17 July and 26 July

Experience the best in entertainment with Firelight Festival’s Speakeasy Series. Warm your soul, as well as your body, at the precinct’s renowned late-night haunts like Hightail Bar and Watermark Docklands, for evenings of 1930’s-style revelry.

Dining at Docklands
Bar Nacional, 90 Seconds, Hof Downtown, City River Cruises and Cargo, Saluministi
12 July, 18 July and 24 July

To celebrate the faithful Melbourne foodie, these workshops and progressive dinners are designed for feasting, delivering decadent indulgence of epic proportions.


Content: City Of Melbourne

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