After three years of pandemic disruption antipodes is finally back for the weekend of 22 to 23 October. The City of Melbourne has included the Antipodes Festival – by the Greek Community of Melbourne, (GCM) – as one of the best free festivals, “you need to visit in Melbourne this year”.
the Antipodes Festival is the largest Hellenic cultural event in Australia. It presents traditional and contemporary art, music, dance, and community activities.
Lonsdale street is blocked off and becomes a sea of people, from all cultures and walks of life, and Greeks of course, immerse themselves in the liminal Greek ‘good life’ for a weekend. More than 120,000 people attend over two days.
Stages – large to small – stake their claim on the street, which was once the heartland of the Greek community, Lonsdale St.
The Greek Cultural Center on the corner of Lonsdale and Russell Streets, is a citadel of Greek Australian culture in Victoria, which still boasts one of the biggest Greek speaking populations outside Greece.
Over 80 street food vendors along with community-based stalls colonize the street.
The festival presents major acts from Greece, local Greek and cross-cultural as well as an endless stream of community dance and music programs.
Roving performers; stilt walkers, and roving troubadours mingle with Ancient Greek gods and goddesses.
Greek street food vans, and restaurants all ensure there is no limit placed on Greek hospitality.
The GCM also hosts its own beach-style Greek bar-tavern.
Melbourne’s Greek community associations, media organizations and sporting clubs, are also represented and authentic Greek gifts and crafts are also available.
This is a panigiri and for all.
Antipodes’ emphasis delivering a professionally curated program makes it one of the best festivals in Australia.
It includes professional artists, new work, and traditional forms of Greek culture, dance, and music.
It also ensures that community, and youth dance and music associations present their work. Antipodes engages a multigenerational and diverse audience.
One is likely to see a Greek Indian music ensemble, a traditional pagan dance from Macedonia, to leading music stars from Greece.
Or they can enjoy dancing to the club sounds of contemporary Greek DJs.
The food ranges from souvaseafood, to delectable vegetarian offerings baclava and loukoumades. Greek beer, wine, and spirits, and Greek soft drinks flow till midnight.