Brisbane Festival 2023 program announced… and there is LOADS happening for kids!

Brisbane Festival returns in 2023 with a program that promises connection, community, complexity, and joy in a city-wide celebration of arts, culture, and live performance from 1 – 23 September.

Brisbane’s premier arts venues and some of the city’s most iconic locations will stage more than 1000 performances – 230 of which are free – including 19 world premieres, two Australian premieres and 11 Queensland premieres.

Below is our pick of the must-do kids’ shows at the 2023 Brisbane Festival.


Noosa Council

Salamandar: 1 – 24 September

Making its world premiere at Brisbane Festival 2023, Salamander is a stunning, large-scale, site-specific dance theatre work by internationally renowned choreographer and director Maxine Doyle and artist and designer Es Devlin, working with composer and sound designer Rachael Dease and leading Queensland artistic company Australasian Dance Collective (ADC).

Salamander transforms a warehouse on the banks of the Brisbane River at Northshore into a futuristic dream-like world, haunted by desperate characters, labyrinths, shifting structures and a flooded landscape.

Salamander at Brisbane Festival 2023

Salamander at Brisbane Festival 2023. Credit: Damien Bredburg


Eternity, by Circa: 13-16 September

Staged in the hallowed grounds of St John’s Anglican Cathedral in the heart of Brisbane City, Eternity creates a communion between Circa’s eight-strong ensemble of acrobats and artists and the spellbound audience.

Eternity by Circa at Brisbane Festival 2023

Eternity by Circa at Brisbane Festival 2023


The Making of Pinocchio: 13-16 September

International festival hit The Making of Pinocchio (13-16 September) is a profound piece of storytelling; a heartwarming, at-times funny and deeply personal account of gender transition, playing Brisbane Powerhouse.

The Australian premiere and Brisbane Festival exclusive tells an intimate story through an international lens, sparking a deeper conversation about gender identity in all communities and societies.

the Making of Pinocchio at Brisbane Festival 2023

The Making of Pinocchio at Brisbane Festival 2023


Lightscape: 1 September – 8 October

After dazzling audiences of all ages across the world, Lightscape – a multi-sensory experience of light, colour and sound – illuminates the City Botanic Gardens from 1 September – 8 October.

The brilliant botanical wonderland features glowing tree canopies, larger-than-life flowers and neon roots bursting from the undergrowth along a 2.5km immersive light trail in the heart of the city.

Lightscape at Brisbane Festival 2023

Lightscape at Brisbane Festival 2023


Riverfire: 1 – 2 September

The skies above Brisbane also come alive on opening weekend with Riverfire by Australian Retirement Trust (2 September) and Nieergoo: Spirit of the Whale, a spectacular, never-before-seen massed drone performance.

The Brisbane-first celestial dance of 400 choreographed drones takes place above the river in front of Queen’s Wharf Brisbane, telling a captivating First Nations narrative through beautiful visuals and a mesmerising soundtrack.

Riverfire at Brisbane Festival 2023

Riverfire at Brisbane Festival 2023


All Together Now: 23 September

All Together Now is a raucous and inclusive, free, all-ages celebration of music, dance, fun and frivolity at Brisbane’s newest inner-city oasis, Victoria Park.

The cacophonous closing night party also serves as the culmination of the Brisbane Serenades program of free mini-concerts across Brisbane suburbs, amassing thousands of everyday musicians in two big events: 10,000 Kazoos and NOISE.

NOISE partners dancers from leading North Queensland company Dancenorth with 100 local drummers who thump out a scintillating live score in a dynamic community-driven performance. 10000 Kazoos calls everyone to join the “Kazoonity” and help assemble the world’s largest and zaniest orchestra, one where no previous musical experience is required.

10000 Kazoos at Brisbane Festival 2023

10000 Kazoos will be part of All Together Now at Brisbane Festival 2023

LoveAvery early learning toys MREC

See the full program and purchase tickets at

Brisbane Festival is an initiative of the Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council.

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Search tags: Arts | Family-friendly
By Angela Sutherland
After spending many years hustling stories on busy editorial desks around the world, Angela is now mum of two little ones and owner/editor at Kids on the Coast / Kids in the City. She is an atrocious cook and loves cutting shapes to 90s dance music. Angela is the editor of Kids on the Coast - a free family magazine whats on guide for Kids: things to do, school holiday fun and free activities for kids... Fun attractions, family food & travel, kids health & wellbeing, kids parties venues, parenting, pregnancy & babies, guide for parents. Servicing Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and beyond, Kids on the Coast is an online guide for parents with kids things to do with kids, schools and education and lifestyle news located on Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast & Brisbane, QLD.

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