Dose of Coast culture
AMOUS for its glitz and glamour, holiday visitors and locals alike may be surprised just how much culture is on the Coast.
The city’s cultural castle, the Arts Centre Gold Coast, is currently celebrating its 25th anniversary and general manager Destry Puia said it was wonderful to see the attraction of the arts growing every year.
Mr Puia said while the centre’s year of celebrations would culminate on November 25 with an outdoor party in the park at the Bundall grounds, there were plenty of other celebrations this winter season.
The Melbourne International Comedy Roadshow will perform from this weekend, a film Q&A event with special guest speaker will be held in the cinema on Monday, the Sydney Dance Company’s first Gold Coast show will debut on July 25 with The Land of Yes and No, while the 25th birthday Fundraising Event on August 25 will raise money for a new special piece of art.
Mr Puia said as well as the centre’s own schedule of visual and performing arts events, the city’s cultural drawcards had expanded over the years to include the likes of the Swell Sculpture Festival in the September school holidays and the In the Bin Film Festival.
“If you look beyond the surface of the Coast I think you can see a city that’s really reaching maturity in terms of its appreciation of the arts,” Mr Puia said. “I don’t mean that every resident adores the ballet or opera, but it is interested in culture beyond the mainstream.
“You can see that in the popularity of our cinema at the Arts Centre as well as all of the local markets that are springing up across the Coast which are a hotbed for new artistic talent.
“Even the cafe culture is resembling that of the traditional salon, with music and poetry encouraged and a real independent spirit.”
Mr Puia said the 25th anniversary of the Arts Centre Gold Coast was a great opportunity to look back, appreciate and applaud its incredible legacy.
But he said the centre continued to look forward in terms of cementing itself as the city’s cultural cornerstone.
“We are one of the oldest regional theatres in Queensland and with that mantle comes a history steeped in significant achievements,” he said.
“We are the custodians of an art collection worth more than $15 million – although much of it is in storage due to space restrictions… something we aim to remedy during the next 25 years.
“We have also been the breeding ground for a number of now international performers in theatre and dance.”
Mr Puia said he was determined the Arts Centre Gold Coast would remain relevant to future generations.
He said the centre sought inspiration from the public.
“We see our role as listening to the community and artists: what are they doing, what do they want, what do they need? It’s not our job to say ‘ you must love ballet’ and only provide classical dance performances.
“Art is organic and we want to reflect what is happening in that brave, new world.”
Gold Coasters can experience a variety of treats. FAR RIGHT: Beth Collier (3) enjoying the 2011 Swell festival.