What’s On: events to check out in February

In case you hadn’t realised, there’s an abundance of events, gigs, festivals and so much more happening around Australia – it’s hard to keep up! That’s why we created our What’s On series: where we take a look at the country’s collective events calendar and handpick the ones we’re planning to get along to with all our friends. February is chockablock full of not-to-be-missed festivals; make sure you browse a few of them below and keep an eye out for more event picks for the rest of the year. 

Mona Foma
17 – 19 February 2023 in Launceston, TAS
24 – 26 February 2023 in Hobart, TAS

Midnight church concerts, queer woodchopping, late-night DJ parties in an old print hall, heck, even Bon Iver and Peaches are making an appearance. And if you’ve ever been to a Peaches show you know you’re in for a wild time. Yes, Mona Foma is back for another year. Split between Launceston and Hobart over two weekends, the festival is ephemeral: a passing celebration of art, music and “other stuff”. Think of it like the warmer sibling of Dark Mofo. Make sure you head to Mona Sessions – an eclectic showcase of bands playing on the lawn of the deeply provocative island gallery – and help yourself to tasty food and drink at The Old Tafe, Book Club and The Party. Check out the full programme and jump on those flight bookings because it’s already February and where is the year going? 

Sydney WorldPride
Sydney, NSW
17 February – 5 March 2023
It’s happening! WorldPride is coming down under and you better hold onto your hot pants because it’s going to be one hell of a party! Not only does Sydney WorldPride represent the first time the event will be staged in the Southern Hemisphere (that’s a big deal, by the way!), but the 2023 festival coincides with the 50th anniversary of the first Australian Gay Pride Week, the 45th anniversary of the first Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and the fifth anniversary of Marriage Equality in Australia. And if that ain’t worth celebrating we don’t know what is. So, what can you expect at this glitter-filled celebration? Get ready for the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and its corresponding events, plus a broad festival offering of theatre, concerts, parties, arts, First Nations programming and a human rights conference. For the first time in three years the Mardi Gras Parade is coming home to Oxford Street; there’ll also be a Pride March of over 50,000 people across the Sydney Harbour Bridge and a Bondi Beach Party with acts like former Pussycat Dolls frontwoman Nicole Scherzinger and an all-Australianall-Australina DJ lineup. The programme is packed with activities and events so make sure you gather your people, book some tickets and get ready to SLAY.  

Adelaide Fringe
Adelaide, SA
17 February – 19 March 2023
Prepare yourself for 31 summer days and nights filled with eclectic and vibrant events for the senses. Think theatre performances, visual arts, music, cabaret, comedy, workshops and plenty more where they came from. The Adelaide Fringe is an event that anyone can enjoy – your mum, your partner, your 87-year-old nana… everyone! Its lineup of artists and venues is diverse, and the Fringe proudly calls itself ‘The People’s Festival’. It’s no surprise that Australia’s biggest arts festival extends beyond the Adelaide CBD – there are shows and events spread across the entire state, which means if you live in a regional town or fancy a road trip you’ll be able to get involved along your journey. Good luck trying to pick only a handful of performances to see – the Adelaide Fringe festival website programme has 91 pages of acts for you to choose from. Lordy! From Ross Noble and sculpture exhibitions to a Disco Bottomless Brunch and some bloke named Barry Potter – your Adelaide Fringe fantasies will be actualised.