News: Winter 2024 – Dark Mofo unveils a slimmed down Festival featuring Marlon Williams and Genesis Owusu, but the bacchanalian revelries remain.

Like an influencer on Ozempic, Dark Mofo returns this year in a very slimmed down form but without the nausea and a lot more agile as a result. And hopefully this is just a pause before normal services resume next year, in rude health. Despite the initial impression from an announcement earlier this year that all musical activities would be suspended and that only the famous winter nude swim and Winter Feast would remain, the program released today indicates there is more of a pulse than first thought, and there is a defiant glimmer in the eye. Dark Mofo Artistic Director Chris Twite said:

I know we said Dark Mofo would stay quiet, but Winter wouldn’t feel the same without the chance to feast and frolic during the long Tasmanian nights. As the chill of winter creeps in I know we are already longing to feast, dance and swim together. So we’re really excited to be able to present these beloved pillars of the festival this June for Tasmanians and all our dedicated Dark Mofo pilgrims.

To reflect the miserable state of the world at the moment (with the mass cancellation of musical festivities rife across Australia), the Winter Feast is cheaper, the nude swim (free anyway) is expanded to allow more participants (I’m still busy that morning) and a couple of special musical events have been added:

  • Genesis Owusu: ARIA-winning alt/rap artist, Saturday, 15 June, Odeon Theatre
  • Marlon Williams: Dreamboat Kiwi crooner: Sunday, 16 June, Odeon Theatre

The bacchanalian excess of the multi-storey dance party Night Shift returns at Altar and High Altar, along with a new and fun nocturnal cousin, Slow Burn, opening at midnight in the Odeon Theatre’s Mezz Bar.

For those of a sensitive disposition not wanting to stay up quite that late, Winter In The Garden will present a vibrant music program across the In The Hanging Garden precinct, with DJs, food and drink pop-ups and more, from 11am daily.

Full details of the program can be found here. Tickets go on sale next Tuesday, 16 April at 10am for subscribers, midday for everyone else. As a subscriber you’ll receive your link to access tickets sometime before 10am Tuesday.

Dark Mofo also coincides with a major exhibition called ‘Name Dropping’ which asks the big questions:

Why are we drawn to certain objects and people? What makes the big names big: Porsche, Picasso or Pompidou? What is the nature of status and why is it useful? Is it just culture, or is there something deeper? Do we have certain ways of caring that our distant ancestors shared, and maybe even benefitted from? Are our choices shaped by culture, or is our culture shaped by nature’s choices?

To which maybe should be added the question why can’t there be a Ladies Only Lounge at the museum? Details of the exhibition and tickets can be found here.

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