Latest News

Back to Latest News back


21st Adelaide Cabaret Festival opened with sold out event

21st Adelaide Cabaret Festival opened with sold out event
June 12, 2021

The 21st Adelaide Cabaret Festival kicked off last night with the sold-out red-carpet event, The Variety Gala at Adelaide Festival Centre’s Festival Theatre.

Olivier and Tony Award winning Scottish/American actor and cabaret icon, Alan Cumming - the festival’s first international Artistic Director – proudly serves up his personal ‘love letter’ to Australia with this year’s star-studded program, including 180 artists in 105 performances over 12 dazzling days and nights!

The world’s largest cabaret festival features 10 world premieres, four Australian premieres and 10 Adelaide exclusives by a large contingent of Australian artists and performers from the USA, and Canada.

Shining the spotlight on Australian talent and some international friends, audiences will be shocked, delighted, teased, and tickled by classic and contemporary cabaret performances with this year’s program traversing the cabaret genre – from old-world French glamour to penis painting, pie-floaters, and everything in between.

In his debut as Artistic Director, Alan Cumming enthuses “I am so excited to finally see this much-loved winter festival come to life and share the special energy of live performance with audiences over the next three weeks. This program is a temple to my love and nostalgia for Australia - the people, the spirit, the adventure, the fusion of high and low that I have learned and stolen from and hold dear in my heart. I hope you Australians enjoy this Scot’s cabaret love letter to you.

“I look forward to seeing audiences experience the joy, laughter, cheekiness and splendour that only cabaret can deliver. I will be bringing a version of my New York cabaret bar, Club Cumming to audiences - a bacchanalian celebration dance party with performances, games, and surprises!         Let’s get this party started.”

Alan Cumming will DJ every night of the festival at the late-night Club Cumming, bringing a touch of New York to Adelaide in The Famous Spiegeltent - limited tickets are still available. The final night of the festival will see Alan perform the world-premiere of his own show, Alan Cumming Is Not Acting His Age, at Festival Theatre before touring the show nationally.

In an Adelaide Exclusive on the first weekend of the festival, Australia’s next generation of First Nations artists will perform in Deadly Hearts - celebrating Australian Indigenous music. The incredible line-up includes multi award winning musician and artist, Dan Sultan; 2019 National Indigenous Music Awards nominee, Tia Gostelow; 2020 Music Vic award winner for Best Emerging Artist, Kee’ahn; and 2019 Triple J Unearthed High Indigenous Initiative winner, Aodhan.

In an Australian first, Young Talent Time (YTT) 50th Anniversary Reunion Special will nod to nostalgia at Festival Theatre on Saturday, 19 June with Johnny Young himself hosting the show. Alumni including Beven Addinsall, Karen Knowles, Jane Scali, Philip Gould, Steven Zammit, Joey Dee, Lorena Novoa and Nicole Cooper will grace the stage and relive the magic of YTT for one night only.

AFI Award winning Hollywood actor Bojana Novakovic performs throughout the festival with an ever-changing cast of surprise guests in the improvisational experiment The Blind Date Project. Audiences will be surprised by a celebrity guests at each performance… who could be the next blind date?

Adelaide Festival Centre Chief Executive and Artistic Director Douglas Gautier adds “South Australia’s favourite winter festival is back and better than ever with a program that celebrates the festival’s 21-year-old history and showcases some of Australia’s best performers in thought-provoking shows. We look forward to welcoming patrons back to our venues to be entertained this winter.

Produced and presented by Adelaide Festival Centre, Adelaide Cabaret Festival has grown from modest beginnings in 2001 to become Australia’s major winter festival and the largest cabaret festival in the world. Previous Artistic Directors of the festival include Julia Holt, David Campbell, Kate Ceberano, Barry Humphries, Eddie Perfect, Ali McGregor and Julia Zemiro.

The festival has been a platform for shows and performers who have achieved critical acclaim and featured world-renowned artists including Ms Lisa Fischer, Kristen Chenoworth, Idina Menzel, Dita Von Teese and Patti Lupone to name a few.

For more information and tickets go to  

Image: The final night of the festival will see Artistic Director, Alan Cumming perform the world-premiere of his own show, Alan Cumming Is Not Acting His Age, at Festival Theatre before touring the show nationally. Credit Christopher Boudewyns

Related Articles

13th April 2021 - Adelaide Cabaret Festival unveils 2021 program

22nd June 2020 - Alan Cumming announced as new Artistic Director for Adelaide Cabaret Festival 2021

5th June 2020 - Adelaide Cabaret Festival marks 20th Anniversary with online celebrations

26th November 2016 - Adelaide Cabaret Festival named South Australia’s Best Major Event

21st June 2015 - Barry Humphries bids farewell to Adelaide Cabaret Festival

6th June 2015 - Barry Humphries launches the Adelaide Cabaret Festival

25th March 2021 - Adelaide Festival Centre announces its Autumn 2021 season

16th March 2021 - 2021 Adelaide Festival beats box office target

18th February 2021 - Adelaide Festival announces new ‘pop-up’ entertainment hub

10th February 2021 - Adelaide Festival Centre’s major performance space to close for up to seven months from mid-July

30th December 2020 - Record-breaking voting sees new stars celebrated on Adelaide Festival Centre’s Walk of Fame

3rd December 2020 - Adelaide Festival Artistic Directors discuss why 36th Adelaide Festival is special

19th November 2020 - South Australian COVID-19 circuit breaker sees Adelaide Festival Centre cancel all performances

20th October 2020 - Adelaide Festival Centre’s OzAsia Talks focus on cultural engagement between Australia and Asia

14th October 2020 - Adelaide Festival Centre reports 77 shows cancelled during Coronavirus shutdown

13th October 2020 - Plan for Adelaide Festival 2021 to be held in outdoor event spaces

12th August 2020 - Adelaide Festival Centre welcomes audiences to newly developed Her Majesty’s Theatre

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all


Founded in 1961, Myrtha Pools® quickly became Italy’s première swimming pool company, and has since grown into one of the world's leading swimming pool construction…

read more

Aquatics / Design / Play / Waterparks / Wellness


BioLab Australia Pty Ltd

BioGuard is Australia and New Zealand’s most trusted supplier of premium, innovative and affordable commercial water treatment systems and chemicals. BioGuard offers a comprehensive range of…

read more

Aquatics / Technology / Waterparks


Hadley/Series Australia Pty Ltd

Hadley Australia and Series Australia Pty Ltd are the leading quality theatre chair manufacturers in the southern hemisphere. The businesses work closely with architects, interior designers and…

read more

Arts / Culture / Design / Entertainment / Venues


Hydrocare Pool Services

Hydrocare Pool Services Pty Ltd offer 30 years of experience in aquatic industry features, products and water treatment. Hydrocare Pools has undertaken water treatment for aquatic centres and…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Recreation / Technology



Gladstone Health & Leisure (Gladstone MRM Pty Ltd Australia) is a leading supplier of leisure management and fitness software and is endorsed by leading health and fitness professionals and…

read more

Access / Billing / Fitness / Technology / Venues



Track. Engage. Retain GreeneDesk is a suite of cloud based software solutions helping health clubs, leisure centres and swim schools to effectively track progression, improve customer engagement and…

read more

Aquatics / Billing / Education / Fitness / Technology


Centaman Entrance Control

Turnstile Entry Systems and Access Control Centaman Entrance Controls’ Award Winning Range of Access Control Systems includes tripod & triarm turnstiles, speedgates, full height…

read more

Access / Entertainment / Sport / Ticketing / Venues


BH Fitness

BH Fitness, part of the long-standing and iconic bike manufacturer BH Group, is a global leader in fitness equipment for both Commercial and Home markets. The company, with the headquarters based in…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Sport / Technology / Wellness


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business