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Canberra International Music Festival- A Celebration of Music for All

The Canberra International Music Festival (CIMF) has been drawing an audience of music appreciators since its initiation in 1994.

Grounded in the sonic worlds of Jazz, classical and artistic music, the festival celebrates and encourages young Australian musicians.

Each year, there are new faces who share their talents with wide audiences, attracting moments of beauty and experiences wonder.

This year, CIMF will be taking place from Friday, April 30th through to Sunday the 9th of May, so you can expect ten grand days of activities and events sure to appeal to practically all musical tastes.

This festival is spread right across Canberra, from Gorman Arts Centre to the Botanical Gardens to Albert Hall, making it easy to attend and to enjoy.

The festival also offers concession prices for each event,  accessible for a diverse audience; and with 29 individual events- there’s sure to be something for everyone.


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Supporting up-and-coming Australian musicians for over 25 years has been the legacy so far for CIMF, with outstanding performances delivered year in, year out- just check out the ‘Revolution’ showreel from CIMF 2017:

2021 will be no different, in fact, the bar may even be broken with a plethora of stand-out performances scheduled.

This year’s theme; ‘…the idea of Vienna’, will see musicians from across Australia take to the stage, sharing the sounds and evoking the feelings of far-away places while planted right here in Canberra. In a fantastic amalgamation, the festival will also feature the sounds of Australia, with concerts such as the much anticipated ‘Hand to Earth’.

Hand To Earth will be taking place on May 2nd at 1:30 pm and 3:30 pm at the National Gallery of Australia.

The concert features innovative performances and pieces from Nardi Simpson, Lamorna Nightingale, Australian Art Orchestra (AAO), David and Daniel Wilfred– Songmen, and Six Yuwaalawaay women from Lightning Ridge.

These exciting artists will be coming together for two special shows, highlighting the amalgamation of tradition and innovation as deftly illustrated through Australia’s First Nation musicians.


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Another knock-out performance group taking part in CIMF 2021 is The Partridge String Quartet, taking to the stage with renditions of music composed by Schubert and beyond.

These young musicians from Melbourne have already paved an impressive and hard-work driven path, most recently being awarded the Musica Viva 2020-21 FutureMakers residency.

With years of experience under their belt, this quartet can’t be missed. With not just one but five festival performances scheduled, why not take the opportunity to see them in action?

If you are in the mood for something quite regal and elegant, you can doll up and attend ‘Beethoven for Breakfast‘ on May 4, or catch them at the exciting Fitters’ Workshop in Kingston on Saturday, May 1st.

With music events this sublime, you won’t believe your ears.

And if you’re in the mood for something a bit explorative, out-there, and dance-able, then you have to come and see the free event ‘CIMF@BELCOARTS‘ on Saturday the 8th of May.

As one of the most highly anticipated events of this year’s run, CIMF@BELCOARTS will shine a light on the eclectic sounds of now.

There will be guitar, piano, choir, singing, and electronic sounds to satisfy a full afternoon of musical cravings! CIMF alumni Jess Green will be bringing the singing and guitar melodies, while the Tiwi Strong Women will ignite the crowd with their harmonic voices, amongst so many other performances on the day.

The event organisers really packed a bit of everything into this free event, so be sure to check it out at the new Belconnen Arts Centre.


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CIMF has everything you’d ever hope for in a music festival; exciting sounds and dozens of events featuring some of Canberra’s most unique and varied locations.

It’s an excellent opportunity to explore Canberra and the diverse musical voices that make up our country, so pop on your dancing shoes and enjoy a concert or two.

Take the opportunity to see some talent in action and experience something breathtaking this year at Canberra International Music Festival.

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