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French film, magic objects and comedy gold - Arts in April

With the cooler autumn weather approaching, there’s never been a better time to get out and about and experience South Australia's arts scene.

From Magic Objects to French film, step out and discover something new this April.

Magic Object, Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: 27 February to 15 May 2016
The 2016 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art is a Pandora’s Box of obscure creations displayed in multiple galleries throughout South Australia. The theme of this year’s Biennial is “Magic Object”, with works inspired by the mysterious and unknown.

The aim of many of this year's artists is to elicit curiosity and wonder in audiences, and ultimately get us asking questions. Themes include riddle, cultural practices, meanings and manifestations, with a focus on “Wunderkammer” – a room or cabinet used to display magical and talismanic objects.

“Much of the work presented in Magic Object looks like one thing but is really another, begging the question – are artists the last magicians?” asks Curator, Lisa Slade.

Exhibitions will be overflowing into the Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum, JamFactory, Carrick Hill, Santos Museum of Economic Botany and Art Gallery of South Australia. 

The Magic Object exhibition runs until 15 May; at many of the participating galleries you’ll find tours, talks, workshops and hands-on activities. For more information head to the Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art website

Alliance French Film Festival: 31 March to 24 April 2016
Parlez-vous français? Oui or non, the Alliance French Festival is a must-visit for anyone who appreciates quality cinema.

Coming to Adelaide’s Palace Cinema from 31 March to 24 April, the 2016 French Film Festival features over 40 awarded French films, including special screenings with canapes, welcome drinks, live entertainment and très chic themed parties.

CATS: 18 March to 10 April 2016
The longest-running show in Broadway history is coming to Adelaide’s Festival Theatre from 18 March to 10 April 2016. Since its first showing in 1981, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s legendary CATS has captivated over 73 million people in more than 300 cities worldwide.

The musical’s 2015 reincarnation reunited the original creative team and saw CATS slink its way back to the West End after a 12 year break. The current cast has received accolades and outstanding reviews, with the show’s London season getting extended due to overwhelming popularity. Expect a magnificent score, superb choreography and dazzling costumes. 

“Shields” Power and Protection in Aboriginal Australia: 24 March to 22 May 2016
The South Australian Museum is known for its ever-changing line-up of fantastic exhibitions and displays. Priding itself on scientific research, the Museum preserves human culture and offer visitors an insight into the lives of Indigenous Australians.

Shields: Power and protection in Aboriginal Australia is a journey into Aboriginal history, exploring the symbolic and physical role that shields play in Indigenous culture. Throughout history, they have played a vital role in conflict between groups and individuals, but also a spiritual and symbolic role in terms of ancestry and Dreaming.

Shields is open from 10am to 5pm daily at the South Australian Museum. For more information see the South Australian Museum website.

The Australian Aboriginal Cultures Gallery

Learn more about our Indigenous history at the Australian Aboriginal Cultures Gallery.

Silver Raven Festival: 2 April 2016
Get yourself to Turkey Flat Vineyards on 2 April for The Silver Raven Festival – a rip-roaring Americana-style festival in the idyllic Barossa Valley. Acclaimed guest performers include Rolling Stone’s songwriter: Jason Isbell, Eilen Jewell (described as a Female Johnny Cash), and blues guitarists, Endless Boogie. Also appearing are local acts: Bad//Dreems, Koral & the Goodbye Horses and The Sloe Ruin.

Starting at 12 noon, the festival is set among lush green vines, sweeping lawns and shady trees, and at only an hour away from Adelaide’s city centre, it’s an easy drive! Hungry? You’ll find gourmet food trucks parked around the site, as well as delicious sweets, coffees and juices to keep you hydrated.

For more information see the Silver Raven Festival Facebook page. For tickets, see Oztix.

Dawn French, Thirty Million Minutes: 5 April to 8 April 2016
Self-described as “somewhere between a monologue, a play, and an autobiographical slide show with a few funnies thrown in,” Dawn French’s Thirty Million Minutes show is set to bring the house down, running from 5 to 8 April at Adelaide’s Festival Theatre. Thirty Million Minutes is a brand-new show from French and has been met with critical acclaim during its UK run.

French’s sharp comic eye, ear for the absurd and tell-all nature will be out in full-force, as she shares how she misguidedly spent her whole life “vigorously attempting to be a fully functioning female human”.

In French’s own words: "I'm sick with excitement about this solo tour. At last, I have had one of my three genie wishes granted, which is to work with Michael Grandage. The other two wishes are as yet unfulfilled. They are secret obviously, but suffice to say, one is about Barack Obama in Speedos. The other is about me in speedos, with cheesecake involved."

Comic-Con: 9 April to 10 April 2016
Unleash your inner geek at Comic-Con – a weekend of comics, anime, cosplay, competitions and fandom – from 9 April to 10 April at the Adelaide Showgrounds.

Meet international actors, TV stars, comics, artists and authors and pick up a bargain at stalls selling the latest merchandise, games, manga, anime, jewellery, literature and costumes. Dress up as your favourite character for the chance to win massive prizes! You’ll also find a huge range of exhibitors, a gaming zone, family area and anime station.

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