General information

Who is Darwin Festival for?
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    Everyone! Our Festival is safe, inclusive and welcoming and audiences of all ages and demographics can binge on a fabulous array of artistic offerings. In 2020 things might look a little different than they usually do, but there’ll be plenty of the events and activities that make Dry Season in the Territory worth celebrating. We promise you’ll be surprised and delighted!

When is the Festival on?
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    The 2020 Darwin Festival will run from 6-16 August.

    If you’re from outside of the Territory and planning a Top End trip for next year, the Festival will be held from 5-22 August 2021.

Where is the Festival held?
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    The beating heart of Darwin Festival is Festival Park, located on the corner of Smith St and Harry Chan Ave in the Darwin CBD. Here you’ll find ticketed and free stages, as well as bars and food vendors. Brown’s Mart Theatre and Courtyard are the places to experience intimate and live art, and performances and visual art exhibitions take place in venues in and around the CBD and across greater Darwin.

    This year you’ll also find a range of online events that can be experienced from wherever you happen to be!

When is the 2020 Festival program released?
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    Our DF20 Homegrown program of events will be released on 9 July

    To be first in the know, sign up to receive our email newsletter.

Where can I get a Program Guide?
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    The best place to find the most detailed information about the 2020 program will be on this website.

    Instead of our traditional hard copy program guide we are printing a calendar guide to this years events. These calendars are distributed around the Northern Territory following the full program launch in July, including in the NT News, Darwin Festival Box Office and at local cafés and restaurants, retail stores, museums and art galleries and Darwin International Airport.

    You can  download your own copy here.

Our venues

I've heard Festival Park is the place to be?
  • A:

    You heard right! Festival Park is the hottest destination in town and our Festival hub. It’s where you’ll find our main stage, the Sunset Stage, the venue for all the best music, as well as Brown’s Mart Theatre and Happy Yess, where you can experience intimate theatre and live art. Bring along a cushion or a picnic rug and enjoy free gigs at the Rimfire Energy Bamboo Bandstand and delicious food and drinks from on-site vendors and our bars.

    Located on the corner of Smith St and Harry Chan Ave in the Darwin CBD, Festival Park is open from 5pm until late 6-16 August 2020 (excluding Monday 10 August). Due to COVID-19 restrictions capacity in the Park is limited in 2020, so buy a ticket to a show on the Sunset Stage and you’ll be guaranteed entry to the site for that night.

    Sunset Stage

    Our newest stage is the place to enjoy incredible music under the stars. Doors open two hours before the show starts so you can secure a spot before enjoying the rest of everything Festival Park has to offer. Though with a bar onsite you might not even want to leave. If you do, drinks purchased at the Festival Park bar are permitted inside the ticketed area.

What is Darwin Festival doing to keep Festival Park COVID-19 safe?
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    Darwin Festival takes the safety of its staff, volunteers, suppliers, artists and patrons very seriously. The Festival, in close consultation with NT Department of Health, has developed an approved and comprehensive COVID-19 Safety Plan to help mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 and keep our community safe. The Festival has made specific considerations, such as site design and handwashing stations, in order to facilitate physical distancing and hygiene recommendations.

    Ultimately, it is up to all of us to take responsibility for COVID-19 safety by following these basic principles:

    • Washing and sanitising our hands as often as possible.
    • Keeping a 1.5 metre distance where we can.
    • Downloading and using the COVIDSafe app on your Apple or Android device.
    • Staying home if we are feeling unwell.

    If you have any questions or concerns about Darwin Festival’s COVID-19 Safety Plan please email hello@darwinfestival.org.au

    Please also keep an eye on our website and follow us on socials to stay up-to-date.

Can I smoke at Darwin Festival?
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    Due to liquor licencing laws in the Northern Territory, all licensed venues are smoke-free. There are designated areas within our Festival precincts for smokers. These areas do not permit the consumption of alcohol and food, but in some locations, small tables at entry points provide a space for patrons to put down their drinks safely and within view.

Can I bring my own food and drink?
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    BYO is strictly prohibited at all Festival venues. Alcohol is available for purchase from our Festival bars. We have terrific, local on-site food vendors at our Festival hub with offerings that will make your mouth water, however, if these options are not suitable for you, you are welcome to bring along your own food. Please note that food is not permitted inside Festival venues.

Can the kids come?
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    Children love the magic of Festival Park – and especially this year when it becomes the home for our family fun day the City of Darwin Teddy Bears’ Picnic. You can search our full range of Family events by selecting the genre ‘Family’ on the search function.

    Some ticketed events have age restrictions, or explicitly prohibit children from attending. These are outlined on the individual events listed on our website.

    For some events, children under the age of two will not require a ticket, however, seating cannot be guaranteed for children without a ticket. For non-Family events, please consider that production elements such as loud music, bright lights, pyrotechnic stage effects and show content can cause distress to infants/minors, and lack of light during a performance can be particularly hazardous when bringing a child with you. If your child is upset or restless, please consider exiting the venue for the benefit of other audience members and the performers. All children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

    For children attending City of Darwin Teddy Bears’ Picnic, we recommend you place your contact number on the body of your child in a visible location so our staff can ensure you are swiftly reunited in case of separation.

Can I bring my dog?
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    Regrettably, your adorable plus one, fur baby, man’s best friend or other domestic pet cannot be brought to our Festival sites (unless of course they are a registered assistance dog). In the interest of your furry family members’ health, it’s best to leave them safely at home away from the loud noises and crowds of a jubilant festival environment.

Can I reserve a table at Festival Park?
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    Due to COVID-19 restrictions there will not be tables at Festival Park this year. Instead we advise you bring your own cushion or picnic rug to relax on. For those not able to sit on the ground there will be limited high tables positioned throughout the Park to rest a drink or plate on.

Are seats general admission or reserved?
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    Most Darwin Festival events do not have allocated seating and therefore are General Admission. Some venues do have allocated seating. If your event is at an allocated seating venue, you can choose your preferred seat or the system will auto-generate the next best available seat for you.

Can I fundraise, advertise or sell goods at Darwin Festival venues?
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    Fundraising is not permitted by anyone on site. Advertising is limited to Darwin Festival website, and for Festival partners who may advertise via our digital advertising packages and at Darwin International Airport. Other businesses are not permitted at any time to advertise at the Festival.

How do I experience an online event
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    At This year’s Festival we’re offering you a range of events you can enjoy wherever you can access the internet. Just visit the event page of each of our online shows when it’s time for them to go live, click the Experience Now button and you’re off!

    If you register for the event. we’ll keep you up to date with everything you need to know about the show and of course if you add to your calendar you’ll get an automatic reminder so you won’t miss out.

    Visit our online event info page for details of all our online events.

Getting to Darwin Festival

Where can I park?
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    Parking is limited in Darwin’s CBD. There is minimal parking available in adjacent streets to Festival Park. We recommend you park and walk from the city, ride a bike, take the bus or split a cab or ride-share service with friends.

Can I take public transport?
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    You can ride FREE on Darwin public transport with a Darwin Festival event ticket for that same day. Each person travelling must be holding a valid Festival ticket or normal fares apply. Present your paper ticket or e-ticket to the driver to ride free.

Can I take my bike?
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    The Dry Season is the perfect time to whip out your bike for a balmy evening ride – plus, it’s good for the environment! We offer bike parks in Festival Park and other Festival venues have bike parking provisions.

What about other Festival venues?
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    You can find further details of our other Festival venues by visiting our Venues page [link].

Tickets and Box Office

How do I buy tickets?
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    Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online, over the phone by calling 08 8943 2222 or directly at the venue (for select events at Darwin Entertainment Centre and Deckchair Cinema). During the Festival, you can also buy tickets at our Box Office located in Festival Park.

    For more details and for Box Office opening times and locations, see our Bookings page.


    You no longer have to go to a Box Office to collect tickets purchase online or over the phone. Instead you will receive an email confirmation with your tickets. Make sure you can see your unique booking barcode – you may need to enable images on your device.

    You can then use your smart phone to show the email confirmation to venue staff for door scanning at performances on arrival. Alternatively, you can print out your receipt and carry it with you for scanning or exchange it for a hard ticket at our Box Office in Festival Park.

    If you have any ticketing issues during the Festival problems, see our friendly staff at the Festival Park Box Office.

    For more details and for Box Office opening times and locations, see our Bookings page.

Do I need to create an account when booking my tickets online?
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    We ask for your personal information in order to deliver your ticket, process your payment arrangements and contact you in the case of cancellation or major disruption of an event. We take all reasonable steps to protect the personal information we hold from misuse, loss and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. Please see our Privacy Policy for more information.

What do I need to know about e-ticketing?
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    An e-ticket (electronic ticket) is the digital equivalent of a paper ticket and a more efficient method of ticket entry. A barcode will be displayed in the email order confirmation that will be emailed to you after you purchase your tickets. Some venues will be scanning your barcode and other venues will require you to present your email confirmation and barcode at the venue Box Office. Basically, your email will suffice as your ticket and you won’t need to queue to collect a paper ticket!

How do I get my e-ticket?
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    Your e-ticket will be sent to your email after your purchase is finalised. If you aren’t able to display your ticket on your mobile device, or print it in advance, then you will need to collect a paper ticket before the performance by showing photo ID at our Box Office in Festival Park or at the venue. For more information about specific venue box offices, see our Venues FAQs [link].

What if I can’t access my email confirmation?
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    You can access your tickets by logging into your Darwin Festival account and finding your order in the Order History section of your account. Select an order and click on the Re-send confirmation email link at the top right of the pop up order screen. You can also call us on 08 8943 4200 and we can resend your email, or you can collect a paper ticket before the performance by showing photo ID at our Box Office.

Am I able to transfer my e-ticket to a friend if I choose not to attend?
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    The easiest way to pass on your ticket to a friend is to visit a Box Office to collect a paper ticket.

    You can forward your e-ticket on, but keep in mind if you have purchased multiple tickets in one transaction, the barcode will allow entry to all the shows in the ticket booking transaction.

    In the event that you present your barcode for scanning at a venue and someone else has already entered on the same barcode, entry will not be permitted to subsequent ticket holders with the same barcode.

    We advise against sharing barcodes. To avoid complications with group bookings, collect your paper tickets from the Box Office to distribute amongst your group.

Will I need any form of identification with the e-ticket?
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    It is handy to carry your ID on you at all times. Venues will ask to sight your applicable form of ID if you have purchased a concession ticket and some venues will need to sight ID for their Liquor Licence requirements.

When is the latest I can book online for an event?
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    Transactions are instantaneous with our ticketing system. You can book up until the show starts at most venues. This means that you can be standing at Festival Park and buy a ticket without having to visit a Box Office!

Do I need to have a smartphone to show the barcode?
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    You can use any device that has access to your email or you can screenshot your order confirmation so that we can sight the booking information or barcode. If you do not have a smartphone, we suggest you collect your tickets in advance from the Box Office or print your confirmation email.

What if I accidentally delete the confirmation email or it doesn’t arrive?
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    Always check your junk folder if you don’t think you have received an email from us. If the email doesn’t arrive or you accidentally delete your email, you can access your tickets by logging into your Darwin Festival account and finding your order in the Order History section of your account. You can also call us on 08 8943 4200 and we can resend your email.

    Always check your junk folder if you don’t think you have received an email from us. If the email doesn’t arrive or you accidentally delete your email, you can access your tickets by logging into your Darwin Festival account and finding your order in the Order History section of your account. You can also call us on 08 8943 4200 and we can resend your email.

Can I use Apple Wallet to store my tickets?
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    Not yet! But we are working on it!

    A quick way to access your barcode is to take a screenshot and save it to your photos or notes.

What are the different ticket types?
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    Concession tickets are available for the following:

    • Full-time students
    • Children 12 years and under
    • Pensioner and carer concession card holders including Concession Scheme Card
    • Health Care Card holders
    • Seniors Card holders
    • BasicsCard holders
    • Companion Card holders
    • Australian Defence Force personnel
    • International defence force personnel

    Proof of concession must be produced to obtain the concession price. Concessions are only available where advertised. Entry is free for children two years and under (subject to advertised age restrictions).


    The more you see, the more you save! Buy tickets to four or more different Festival events in the same transaction and save 10% on FULL PRICE tickets, some exclusions apply.

    Festival Multipacks can be purchased online, over the phone or in person at our Festival Park Box Office and are only applicable for events sold through Darwin Festival.


    Discounted tickets for sessions prior to the official opening of the event’s season.  Please note the Multipack discount does not apply to Preview performances.

What are the Box Office opening times and locations?
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    From Thursday 6 – Sunday 16 August, our Box Office in Festival Park is open from 5pm-8.15pm. Visit our Bookings page for opening times and locations of venue box offices.

What does the no latecomers notice on my e-ticket mean?
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    For the safety of the performers and audience, some performances have a strict lockout policy. This means no-one will be admitted to the venue once the show has started. Some performances may admit latecomers at a suitable point in the performance.

    Lockouts and other content warnings are advertised in the event listings on the event pages of this website, on your e-ticket and in performance reminder emails. No refunds will be provided for latecomers under strict lockout conditions.

    Please see our Ticketing Terms & Conditions of Sale for further information.

The event I want to see is sold out – how can I get my hands on a ticket?
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    You will sometimes find a final release of tickets become available for purchase on our website, closer to an event’s date. Alternatively, you can add your name to waiting lists to see shows in the event that tickets become available. Simply call our Box Office on 08 8943 4222 to make your inquiry.

How do I go about requesting a refund?
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    Please see our Ticketing Terms & Conditions of Sale for further information.

    Please note the Festival’s COVID-19 refund conditions are guided by Live Performance Australia, which states that events do not need to provide a refund or exchange if a ticket holder does not wish to attend an event due to fears of exposure to COVID-19; or if a ticket holder is unwell and does not attend an event (in line with government recommendations).

Festival news

How can I stay in the loop?
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    Subscribe to our e-news so you don’t miss a thing. You’ll be the first to hear of exciting program reveals, competitions and news. Subscribe here.

    Like us for event news and exclusive competitions on Facebook.

    Follow us on Instagram to see behind the scenes pics, meet our artists and be inspired by all things Darwin Festival.

    Subscribe to the Darwin Festival YouTube channel to see sizzle reels and highlight videos.

    Use the #darwinfestival hashtag to tag your Instagram and Facebook posts, and tweets.

I'd like to be a Friend of the Festival

Where can I sign up and what are the benefits?
  • A:

    The 2020 Darwin Festival will be a different Festival than previous years, so we are suspending our Friends of the Festival program until things get more back to normal. We still need your support to make this 2020 Festival possible. So please get involved, buy tickets and even consider making a donation.

    If you’re keen to be our Friend in the future visit our Friends of the Festival page for the full list of benefits offered in past years.

Is my current Friends membership valid?
  • A:

    All 2019 Friends memberships expired on 30 April 2020. Any 2020 Friends memberships already purchased can be rolled over for use in 2021. Alternatively you can request a refund on the cost of your membership by contacting us at hello@darwinfestival.org.au or by phoning (08) 8943 4200.

Supporting the Festival

Can I become a partner?
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    We love to tailor partnerships that meet our partners’ business objectives and we ensure every partnership with Darwin Festival is unique! For more information visit our Partnerships page.

I’d like to donate some money to the Festival
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    Every donation is particularly important this year as we create an appropriate celebration in these unprecedented times. You can find out all you need to know about supporting us financially on our Donate page.

Getting involved

I’m an artist/performer – can I apply to be in the Festival?
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    Darwin Festival is a fully curated event, with the artistic program being the result of the Artistic Director’s vision. However, Darwin Festival does invite expressions of interest from local artists every year. To find out more, visit our Artists page.

I’m interested in working at Darwin Festival
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    Festival employment opportunities are featured on our Join the team page. Please check back for future openings.


I'd like to volunteer my services
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    Great! For more information visit our Volunteers page and read on below.

Am I qualified to be a Darwin Festival volunteer?
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    We are committed to an inclusive and diverse volunteer team and welcome applications from everyone.

    We would like our volunteers to have a positive attitude, be punctual and be fluent in English. We appreciate those who have a commitment to making the Festival a fantastic experience for the public, guests and staff. Most of all we seek volunteers that have energy and enthusiasm for the Festival and our events.

What are the basic requirements?
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    As a volunteer you must be over 16 years of age. We ask that volunteers help for a minimum of three shifts across the 11-day Festival. Shifts range from three to five hours.

    You will also be required to attend the compulsory Volunteer Induction Night in July where you will receive the Festival Volunteer Handbook. You will be required to comply with all conditions outlined in the Induction/Handbook, which includes compliance with Darwin Festival’s COVID-19 Safety Plan.

What type of jobs will I be doing?
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    Darwin Festival volunteers are generally engaged as front of house, market research and information assistants. However there are also roles specific to performances as well as administrative positions prior to the Festival. Each year more than 80 Darwin Festival volunteers help across Festival venues including Festival Park, Brown’s Mart Theatre and various other locations across Darwin City.

    We expect our volunteers to be able to:

    • Work closely with the general public
    • Be adaptable to a busy, constantly changing environment
    • Interact with everyone from children to late-night revellers
    • Be able to work as part of a large team
What are the benefits of being a Darwin Festival volunteer?
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    Volunteers enjoy a creative environment, new challenges and the opportunity to meet new people.

    Your Volunteer Pass provides benefits including free bus travel during the Festival.

I have more questions, where can I direct these?

Filming and photography

I want to film/photograph an event
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    The Festival is uber-Instagrammable, it’s true, and we encourage you to share your good times with us on social media (don’t forget to tag #darwinfestival). However, due to our artists’ performance contracts, the use of video and audio recording devices are strictly prohibited at Festival events, with the exception of official Festival photographers and videographers, any approved media representatives, and those with written permission from Festival management.

    If you would like to apply for media accreditation, please contact Matt Fraser matt@originalspin.com.au. For written permission, please email hello@darwinfestival.org.au to obtain an application form (fees apply).

Will I be filmed or photographed at Festival events and venues?
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    You may be filmed or photographed by Festival staff and contractors while taking part in Festival events. Any footage or photos may be used to promote the Festival in the future.

Lost property

Help – I’ve lost something at Darwin Festival!
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    If you are at a Festival venue, please report your lost item to our friendly Box Office team. If you are no longer at the venue where you lost an item, please call the Darwin Festival office on 08 8943 4200 during business hours (Mon-Fri, 9am-5.30pm) or email hello@darwinfestival.org.au


    To ensure children lost at City of Darwin Teddy Bears’ Picnic are swiftly returned to their guardian we recommend a contact number be placed on the child in an easily visible location.


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