Over the past two years, Arts Centre Melbourne’s Theatre & Contemporary Performance series Big World, Up Close has gripped audiences with powerhouse performances showcasing some of the most compelling new works from across the globe.

This year, from 10 July until 1 September Big World, Up Close has expanded its offering with six major works championing First Nations artists from New Zealand, Canada and Australia, as well as those representing Cambodian, Malaysian and African diasporas.

The highly acclaimed series unveils vital voices in contemporary performance and is now more urgent than ever. Woven from raw emotion and unapologetic in their honesty, each story speaks across the fault lines between ancestry and contemporary existence.

By empowering these fierce storytellers to reclaim and reframe our view of the world today, their profound and personal stories will challenge audiences. These stories know no limits.

In an effort to make the series accessible to a broader age range and encourage intergenerational theatre experiences, this year Big World, Up Close will present two exciting works that form part of Arts Centre Melbourne’s Families Winter/Spring seasonBetween Tiny Cities and One the Bear.

This year’s works include Between Tiny Cities  (Cambodian, Australian), Two Worlds by Modern Maori Quartet (Tangata Whenua of Aotearoa, New Zealand), One the Bear (Australian, African Diaspora), Since Ali Died (Malaysian-Australian), BLOOD ON THE DANCE FLOOR (Narangga and Kaurna, First Nations Australian) and Deer Woman (Blackfoot).

From a tale of a Blackfoot warrior woman seeking vengeance, to rap-poetry on the dark realities of growing up as a brown-skinned Muslim boy in suburban Australia, and the crooning harmonies of a vocal quartet exploring Maori manhood; it’s a fearless new world in the making.

Tapping explosive energies, Cambodian and Australian B-boys will thrill with their lightning-speed footwork, and First Nations Australian dancer diagnosed with HIV will take you on a deeply personal journey in search of his ancestors, while two best friends get up to mischief in a neon-saturated tale of hip hop activism; this is more than just a series.

Lean in and get Up Close.

Arts Centre Melbourne presents
Big World, Up Close10 July – 1 September
Bookings at artscentremelbourne.com.au