An Open Invitation to Hamer Hall’s 30th Birthday Open Day

11am–2pm Sunday 4 November


Hot-on-the-heels of the triumphant re-opening of Hamer Hall is the esteemed auditorium’s 30th Birthday.  Victorians who did not get an opportunity to experience the venue in July, are invited to come and enjoy a range of free tours, talks and free entertainment from 11am–2pm Sunday 4 November.

Arts Centre Melbourne Chief Executive Judith Isherwood said, “We’re throwing open the doors once again to mark the date back in 1982 when the completion of this concert hall heralded the arrival of Victoria’s long-awaited home for the performing arts.  Thirty years down the track, Hamer Hall is looking absolutely fabulous and if you haven’t had a chance to come and see it – or you missed seeing something because of the huge opening crowds – come and have a look.  And if you’ve always dreamed of taking a bow on the Hamer Hall stage, now’s the time to come and do it!”

Since its opening on 6 November 1982, the Melbourne Concert Hall has immediately occupied a central position in the musical life of Australia.  Renamed Hamer Hall on 21 April 2004 in honour of former Premier Sir Rupert Hamer, it has staged some of the finest musicians and performers from across the world.

It has been home to Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Australian Chamber Orchestra and Musica Viva. Among the stars to grace the Hamer Hall stage have Dame Joan Sutherland, Luciano Pavarotti, Dame Kiri te Kanawa, John Williams, Shirley Bassey, Norah Jones, Harlem Gospel Choir, Joe Cocker, Paul Kelly, k.d. lang, Elton John, Sting, Julio Iglesias, Tina Arena, Czech Philharmonic, Bill Bailey and more.

Since Hamer Hall re-opened three months ago, more than 86,000 people have attended ticketed events and to date this year more than 160,000 tickets have been sold to 76 events.


Take A Tour – and a Bow!

To showcase Hamer Hall’s new interiors, there will be free tours every 15 minutes from 11am–2pm from the Concierge Desk in Hamer Hall’s St Kilda Road Foyer, with the last tour leaving at 1:30pm.  Explore the redeveloped and public and backstage areas, including artworks, points of interest and changes made, and step onto the stage of this 2,460-seat auditorium and take a bow!


Free Foyer Talks

Two free foyer talks in the Melbourne Room will illuminate the original construction of Hamer Hall, together with its recent two-year redevelopment.
At 11:30am Vicki Fairfax, author of historical book A Place Across The River, will re-tell the fascinating stories of the behind-the-scenes characters who created and constructed Hamer Hall.
At 1pm Ian McDougall, lead architect of the re-development and co-founder of Ashton Raggatt McDougall, will discuss the triumphs and challenges of his work complementing an original design and enhancing its existing features.

30th Birthday Photo Album

An outstanding building like Hamer Hall lends itself to outstanding creative photography.  For the 30th Birthday Open Day, visitors are invited to get creative and join in the fun.  Come to Hamer Hall for the Open Day and get your camera in action.  Photograph what you like about Hamer Hall, what it means to you or your favourite part of the building. It could be architectural or simply friends and family having a great time.  The possibilities are endless.  You’re in charge.
The best photograph will win two tickets to a performance of the internationally acclaimed War Horse, which opens at Arts Centre Melbourne on December 31.
Competition Details:
1.     Take a photo of Hamer Hall on the Open Day.
2.     Upload the photo to Arts Centre Melbourne’s Facebook page.(Don’t forget to like our page as the competition is only open to our fans.)
3.     Competition closes midnight 4 November 2012.
4.     The winning photo will be shared on our page and the winner will be notified via Facebook.
You don’t need to be a professional photographer to win.  Mobile shots are welcome.  Photos will be judged on creativity.  The judges’ decision will be final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Hamer Hall on Screen

Discover Hamer Hall archival footage, including Hamer Hall – The First 12 months, Hamer Hall Forward Focus and Hamer Hall – Designed for the 21st Century, all screened inside Hamer Hall.  The films give an insight into the history and long journey that led to the creation and redevelopment of the hall.

Short Films in the Stalls Foyer

There will be short films of varying lengths playing continuously on screen in Hamer Hall Stalls Foyer throughout the day.  These include Nautilus, which presents an abstract composition illustrating the formal and structural qualities of Hamer Hall.  The film is expressed architecturally, mathematically and anthropologically, through images of music, biology and art and is directed by Bobby Dazzler and produced by XYZ studios.
Presence, directed by Nick Wright and Travis Hogg produced by Airbag Productions, focuses on a lone dancer, cloaked in shadow and dust.  However, rather than emphasizing the dancer's physical presence, the camera fixates on the kinetic energy found in the dancer’s wake.
Evolution, an evolving panoramic landscape, represents a journey through the history of the site upon which Arts Centre Melbourne is situated, is created by animation director Cameron Gough and produced by Dirty Puppet.

On Cue 

Visitors can enjoy On Cue, a mobile device tour of the artworks on display in the new Hamer Hall.  Using any handheld mobile device with access to the internet, visitors can navigate Hamer Hall and explore the special collection of artworks on display.
Access on-demand content about artworks on display including work by Donald Laycock, Asher Bilu and Robert Owen, learn about the contemporary art commissioned for the launch of Hamer Hall, and dis cover more about the nation’s premier Performing Arts Collection through artist interviews, curator insights and behind-the-scenes footage.  Look for the Quick Response Barcode and directions next to the artwork and scan with a mobile phone to read the content.

Sidney Nolan’s Paradise Gardens

A selection of Sidney Nolan’s much-loved series of paintings from Paradise Gardens (1968-1970) that used to hang in Hamer Hall will be displayed in the Arts Centre Melbourne St Kilda Road Gallery (in the Theatres Building under the spire) as part of the 30th Birthday celebrations.
Sidney Nolan’s Paradise Garden is one of the wonders of Arts Centre Melbourne’s Public Art Collection.  In this monumental work Nolan has captured both the botanical detail and the expansive beauty of a sea of native Australian wildflowers in full bloom.
Paradise Garden was Nolan’s response to hearing Benjamin Britten’s cantata Rejoice in the Lamb, where he used a combination of layering acetate paint and wax resistant crayons to create a colourful and vibrant set of works.  Producing, two images per day six days a week he completed the entire 1320 images, in a total of 220 panels with six paintings in each, from 1968-1970.
This exhibition provides an opportunity for visitors to become visually, physically and spiritually immersed in the creativity of Nolan’s floral symphony.

Sunday Market

Arts Centre Melbourne Sunday Market brings together Victoria's finest artisans, right in the heart of Melbourne. From 10am–4pm local artists and producers fill Arts Centre Melbourne's Lawn to showcase a variety of unique, handmade goods ranging from arts and crafts to freshly made delicacies.  Everything at the Sunday Market is made locally, making the market a go-to place for those seeking one-of-a-kind treasures for themselves or as gifts.
From 12pm–2pm Balkan brass orchestra Opa! will perform their brand of East-Meets-West rhythms, inspired by the Romany Balkan wind orchestras.
There will also be a roaming Balloon Man on hand creating characters for adults and children from 11am–2pm.
For more information visit, phone 1300 182 183 or follow Arts Centre Melbourne on Facebook and Twitter.