Adelaide Festival 2021 | Family Friendly Shows & Events | 26 Feb – 14 Mar 2021

Adelaide Festival 2021 – Family Friendly Shows & Events

Every year, in the month of March, the Adelaide Adelaide Festival brings the very best of the arts from around the world, across the country and from our own community into South Australia. This year, some events will be live streamed from across the globe to venues in and around South Australia.

Adelaide Festival and Adelaide Writers’ Week have built a world-wide reputation for providing great and memorable experiences for those who visit our State and provide a fantastic opportunity to showcase all that this festival city offers.

Program of Family Events:

Free Opening Event – Jessica Mauboy | Saturday 27 February

An amazing First Nations triple-threat who transcends genres—dance, pop, urban, country—with consummate skill, delivers live performances that leave audiences swooning and whose beautiful soul shines through every song. Expect her full old-school R&B band and sensational backing singer/dancers pumping out all the hits including those from her acclaimed latest album Hilda (fresh from its #1 debut on the ARIA charts). 

Bookings Essential | **SOLD OUT**


Kids Day | Free Event | Saturday 27 February 

Kids’ Day on Saturday features an all-Australian line-up of some of the brightest names in children’s literature including current Australian Children’s Laureate Ursula Dubosarsky (The Terrible Plop and Brindabella), Davina Bell and Allison Colpoys (Under the Love Umbrella and All The Ways To Be Smart) and Adam Briggs (Our Home, Our Heartbeat).

With an abundance of free activities ​with Deb Twining Arts in the shade of the Plane Trees, the Kids’ Day events will delight and inspire the under 12 crowd.



Middle Grade & YA Day | Free Event | 28 February

Middle Grade & YA Day features a stellar lineup of contemporary authors! The day will include Davina Bell (The End of the World is Bigger Than Love), James Bradley (Ghost Species), Ursula Dubosarsky (The Word Spy and Pierre’s Not There), Will Kostakis (The Monuments series), Jess Scully (Glimpses of Utopia), R.A. Spratt (The Peski Kids and Friday Barnes; Girl Detective series), Vikki Wakefield (This is How We Change the Ending) and Sean Williams (Twinmaker).

It’s a relaxed environment for tweens and teens to enjoy author talks and conversations. And don’t miss the dynamic and powerful spoken-word performers in Hear Me Roar.

Location: Pioneer Women’s Memorial Garden | Recommended for tweens and teens


Plastic Bag Store | Free Event | 23 February – 14 March

Brooklyn-based artist and filmmaker Robin Frohardt has created an installation that is as funny as it is horrific – lovingly hand-made goodies, created from hundreds of upcycled plastic bags and plastic rubbish, “locally sourced and harvested from the streets and bins of New York City.” 

Most uncannily resemble everyday products (from tubs of ice cream and whole rotisserie chickens to deli items, mixed salads, fruit, veg, and cleaning supplies) while others entice you to sample new lines, such as Baggo Breakfast Waffles (“Hot melty bags in your mouth in minutes”), Bagarino Pizza or juice-like cartons of Orange Plastic Bags, complete with an honest list of Nutrition Facts (straight zeros) and homespun mission statement (“only the finest orange plastic bags from Florida delivered to you with love”).

It’s free and open to everyone, you can either wander at your leisure or book a free immersive experience

Location: Level 1, Rundle Place, 77-91 Rundle Mall, Adelaide | Recommended for ages 7+ 




Ngarku/adlu (Let’s eat) Picnic | 13 & 14 March 

In collaboration with First Nations leaders, you will be welcomed to Kaurna land, given a picnic box packed with treats and will sample the unique flavours and textures that have nourished the Kaurna, Adnyamathanha, Ngarrindjeri, and Narungga nations for more than 65,000 years. You’ll learn about traditional Aboriginal cooking techniques, the places where bush food is sourced, how it is picked, foraged, hunted and cooked today, and how contemporary adaptation of locally sourced native foods can form a bigger part of everyone’s household pantry. Children’s activities, storytelling and explorations of Aboriginal culture will be provided by our friends from the South Australian Museum.

All products on offer are made in Australia from 100% locally sourced, seasonal and wild harvested produce with an emphasis on supporting Aboriginal enterprises.

Location: The University of Adelaide, Barr Smith Lawns (enter from Victoria Drive) | Cost: $49, Concession & Child 3-12 years old $29, Child under 2 years old free


Shared Reckonings | Free | 24 February – Sunday 2 May

Experience a brand new artistic display by artist Catherine Truman.

The exhibition, presented at the Santos Museum of Economic Botany and the Deadhouse within Adelaide Botanic Garden, is a creative response to an extraordinary year of research by Catherine Truman.

The talented local artist worked across the disciplines of plant science, ophthalmology and art, exploring the fascinating parallels between human sight, plant growth and the role of light.

Catherine’s work combines photo-luminescent powders and thermoplastic with illuminating results.


Fangirls | 27 February – 14 March 2021

As Hamilton proved, in a world where new musicals are often focus-grouped into blandness, fabulous butterflies can still emerge from the chrysalis of a single brilliant mind. Such is FANGIRLS, whose book, music and lyrics are by young Sydney-born writer Yve Blake.

Fascinated by the way that society can see a mob of screaming fans as “embarrassing” (if female, and at a pop concert) – but “passionate” (if male at a footy match), Yve set out to write the show she wished her 14-year-old self could have seen: a comedy all about the ways that the world tries to convince young women that they’re not as worthy as their brothers. It follows Edna, a plucky misfit scholarship girl who believes that she alone can win the heart of the world’s biggest pop star; Harry. Sure, he has 38 million other fans, but for Edna, that’s merely a hurdle. Because there’s nothing she won’t do to meet Harry. No really, nothing.

With an amazing eclectic cast (including Aydan from The Voice), inexhaustibly witty dialogue, and heart-pumping, infectious songs, it’s an ode to love that smashes all generational generalisations: whether or not you’ve ever been a fangirl/boy it will move you and leave you with involuntary grin syndrome.
Expand or collapse Credits

Location: Ridley Centre, Adelaide Showground, Goodwood Road, Wayville | Cost: General Admission $99 | Friends $84 | Concession $79 | Under30 $50 | Full-Time Student $45



the pulse

The Pulse – Gravity & Other Myths / Aurora (Young Adelaide Voices) | 25 February – 3 March  

This exhilarating spectacle is the stuff of lockdown dreams: a massive embodiment of primal hunger for community and physical touch. Audience, acrobat and choir fuse into a single organism for a moment in time.

Back for its third and biggest Festival mainstage show, Gravity & Other Myths, the home-grown company that conquered the world, brings together all three of its core ensembles plus a choir of 30 voices. The Pulse is a wholly Australian work. 

The Helpmann award-winning creative team responsible for Out of Chaos… — director Darcy Grant, designer Geoff Cobham and composer Ekrem Eli Phoenix — reunite to reignite the signature spirit of this unique company: visceral, poetic, heart-stopping feats…dispatched by your best mates.

Location: Her Majesty’s Theatre | Grote Street, Adelaide 


things to do in Adelaide for families

For more information and all enquiries please visit the Adelaide Festival website

What:     Adelaide Festival 2021

When:    Friday 26 February – Sunday 14 March 2021

Where:   Various locations around Adelaide

Who:       Everyone

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

Image Source: Adelaide Festival Facebook page


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