There are music festivals, and then there's the Queensland Music Festival — and never should the two be confused. There's nothing quite like the whole-of-state, 17-day-long music frenzy, with QMF so jam-packed, so extensive in its program and touring schedule, and so logistically intricate, that it only happens once every two years.
That means odd-numbered calendars are ones to savour, for those who like all kinds of tunes. Under artistic director James Morrison, the festival does everything it can to showcase the joy of music. In fact, the multi-instrumentalist himself even teams up with Megan Washington and Marian Petrescu for a one-of-a-kind jazz performance.
Local icons Topology are also on the QMF bill of course, partnering with the Australian Voices on Unrepresentative Swill: Sing, Prime Minister. Their unique show takes words right out of our former leaders' mouths, sets them to music, and features narration by Adam Spencer.
Venturing to different parts of Queensland is all part of the QMF experience, such as attending the Opera at Jimbour. It's the kind of event to make a whole day of, with market stalls taking care of your food and drink needs, plus free waltzing lessons getting you moving and grooving.
Those seeking more free fun but wanting to stay closer to home best head to Seed, which champions the very best local independent bands before they’ve hit the mainstream airwaves. Or, there's Logan's Under This Sky premiere production, boasting a cast of 700 singing, dancing and playing on a football field.
But wait, there's more — including the interactive fun of Keys to the City. Pods of pianos will pop-up across 40 locations, combining special guest performers with anyone in the vicinity who wants to tickle the ivories. Then, a free outdoor concert brings it to a close. Yes, QMF really does know how to throw a festival.