Sitting beneath one of the city’s great symbols, the magnificent spire, Arts Centre Melbourne is both a defining Melbourne landmark and Australia’s largest and busiest performing arts centre.
Right in the heart of Melbourne’s famed cultural precinct sits Australia’s largest performing arts venue – Arts Centre Melbourne. For over three decades this has been the Victorian capital’s leading venue for world-class theatre, dance, music and more. In the Theatres Building, directly under the venue’s iconic Spire, are three separate theatres – the State Theatre, the Playhouse and the intimate Fairfax Studio.
The State Theatre has one of the largest stages in the world and regularly hosts performances by Opera Australia and The Australian Ballet. The Fairfax Studio is a versatile, intimate 376-seat theatre, offering the chance to get ‘up close and personal’ with a variety of contemporary works by presenters from Australia and around the world. The plush, 884-seat Playhouse hosts everything from The Production Company’s entertaining musicals to family shows, comedy and contemporary dance.
Arts Centre Melbourne also houses a significant visual art collection, with works by artists such as Arthur Boyd, John Olsen and Roger Kemp on display in the foyers and a self-guided tour available. Explore your love of music, revisit big music moments and discover the stories of Australian contemporary music at the Australian Music Vault. This free exhibition turns up the volume on our love affair with Australian contemporary music and includes interactive and digital experiences, learning programs, iconic objects and performances. Why not try a guided tour of the venues? These depart at 11am daily and reveal the fascinating stories and secrets of this extensive venue, including the three theatre spaces and five floors underground. Outside Arts Centre Melbourne, local artisans fill the lawn from 10am to 4pm on Sundays to showcase their locally produced arts, crafts and freshly made delicacies at the Sunday Market. Dining options are varied and cover pre-show drinks and small bites, light lunches, hearty dinners, coffee-and-cake or nightcaps.