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Tutankhamun breaks box office records for Melbourne

Tutankhamun breaks box office records for Melbourne
December 6, 2011

Victoria's major events success has taken on a golden glow with final figures showing Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs has smashed box office records for touring exhibitions in Australia.

Victorian Minister for Tourism and Major Events Louise Asher announced that the exhibition, which closed its doors on Sunday, had been a triumph for Victoria attracting a total attendance of 796,277 in the 34 weeks since it opened in April.

The exhibition, a collection of artefacts from the Cairo Museum, has attracted worldwide attendances of more than eight million.

Minister Asher explained "the Victorian Coalition Government is proud to support these hugely successful blockbuster exhibitions because big visitor numbers means more jobs for Victorians and a significant boost for the Victorian economy.

"Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs has not only provided Victorians with a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the treasures of the boy king in their own Melbourne Museum, but has also attracted more than 326,000 interstate and international visitors (41% of attendees), driving outstanding tourism and economic benefits for Victoria.

"In addition, almost 95,000 people attended the exhibition with a school or community group, giving them a unique insight into daily life in ancient Egypt.

"In Australia, only a handful of exhibitions have exceeded attendances of 300,000. Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs stands head and shoulders above this, a testament to Melbourne's continuing reputation as Australia's cultural hub.

"With more than 44% of attendees being first time visitors, Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs brought new audiences to Melbourne Museum."

Other recent Australian exhibitions with attendances over the 300,000 mark include:

• Titanic: the Artefact Exhibition at Melbourne Museum with 481,000;

• Masterpieces from Paris at the National Gallery of Australia with 476,000;

• The Impressionists at the National Gallery of Victoria with 380,000;

• A Day in Pompeii at Melbourne Museum with almost 333,000;

• Salvador Dalí: Liquid Desire at the National Gallery of Victoria with almost 333,000; and

• The First Emperor: China's entombed warriors at the Art Gallery of New South Wales with more than 305,000.

Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs was part of the Melbourne Winter Masterpieces series which brings some of the world's best art and cultural exhibitions to Melbourne.

Explaining the success of the series, Minister Asher added "this exhibition brings Melbourne Winter Masterpieces attendances to almost 3.5 million, delivering millions of dollars in economic benefit, enhancing Victoria's liveability and strengthening Melbourne's reputation as Australia's cultural capital."

Stephen Flint Wood, Managing Director of event organisers IMG Arts & Entertainment, said the exhibition had been a true success in every sense of the word, stating "Tutankhamun has definitely made his impact on Melbourne and Australians have embraced this exhibition, which celebrates a period in time that holds such historical significance.

"We would like to acknowledge and thank the Victorian Government, the Victorian Major Events Company, Arts Victoria, Melbourne Museum and all the sponsors of the exhibition.

"The Australian visit of this record-breaking exhibition would not have been possible without their support."

Museum Victoria Chief Executive Dr J Patrick Greene said the success of Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs had been one of Melbourne Museum's most significant achievements.

Dr Greene explained "this outstanding exhibition has brought with it a record number of visitors to both the museum and to Victoria.

"That so many people have been able to experience the treasures uncovered during one of the world's greatest archaeological discoveries is something of which we are immensely proud."

Earlier, Dr Greene had told The Age newspaper that hosting the museum's longest-running exhibition would be "revenue-positive", adding "some of the entry fee comes to us and the secondary spend in museum shops is important, too."

Next year's Melbourne Winter Masterpieces series will feature Game Masters, presented at ACMI and Napoleon: Revolution to Empire, presented at NGV International. Both exhibitions will be held from June to October 2012.

10th April 2011 - TUTANKHAMUN EXHIBITION OPENS AT THE MELBOURNE MUSEUM

27th September 2010 - TITANIC EXHIBITION SETS VISITOR RECORD


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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 www.ausleisure.com.au 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.

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