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Dark MOFO - A new winter festival for Tasmania

Dark MOFO will be for cornerstone of a three-month calendar of cultural activities, led by MONA, during winter next year.

The Premier and Minister for the Arts, Lara Giddings, announced on 22 October 2012 that Tasmania will host a new cultural festival, Dark Mofo, which will be held in winter 2013.

“Dark Mofo will be the cornerstone of a three-month calendar of cultural activities being led by MONA in conjunction with the Festival of Voices and other partners” Ms Giddings said

“Dark Mofo will commence with a large-scale fire and light event at Salamanca, and will include a night market at Princes Wharf 1 with music programmed by Brian Ritchie, a headline musical artist, and partnerships with existing events including the Festival of Voices.”

The festival will be centred around a major winter exhibition at MONA, which will run for approximately three months.

“Following the great success of Theatre of the World in collaboration with French curator Jean Hubert Martin and the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, I am delighted that MONA will once again host a major winter exhibition during 2013.”

Ms Giddings said events play an important role in creating demand for travel to Tasmania throughout the year, and the Tasmanian Government, through Events Tasmania and Tourism Tasmania, would invest $1 million per year, for three years in the new event.

“Dark MOFO will build on the existing success of MONA FOMA as a powerful cultural tourism driver and will attract visitors to Tasmania during winter,” Ms Giddings said.

“This is particularly important to sustaining our tourism and hospitality industries through the traditionally quieter months.”

“I am delighted that David Walsh and MONA have seen an opportunity to build on the success of the summer MONAFOMA by designing a winter cultural event.” Ms Giddings said.

David Walsh, creator of MONA, attributes much of his motivation for backing Dark Mofo, to his father.

“My dad once said ‘I'll back the winter to beat any tourist business in Hobart’. He was a bit of a punter, but I've been known to have a bet myself, and I'm going to take his wager. I think he would understand why we think this is a race worth rigging,” said Walsh.

The Premier also thanked the Hobart and Glenorchy City Councils for their support of Dark Mofo and the many groups and organisations helping to make Dark Mofo a success –, Hobart’s Theatre Royal, Salamanca Arts Centre, Glenorchy Arts and Sculpture Park (GASP!), Conservatorium of Music at the University of Tasmania, CAST, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra.

“It is exciting to see the organisers of existing and proposed events working together with the promise to create an event that is larger than the sum of its parts.”

“This sort of dedication and collaboration within our arts and cultural sector is one of the reasons Tasmania now enjoys a reputation as a burgeoning cultural destination,” Ms Giddings said.

Dark Mofo is scheduled to take place from 14 to 24 June 2013.

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