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Record Crowds Attend Acclaimed SUPERSENSE: Festival Of The Ecstatic At Arts Centre Melbourne

Record Crowds Attend Acclaimed SUPERSENSE: Festival Of The Ecstatic At Arts Centre Melbourne

Arts Centre Melbourne's mesmerising Supersense: Festival of the Ecstatic has drawn record crowds across three days of ecstatic enquiry, with 10,865 attendees over 23 - 25 August, 2019.

In its third iteration, the durational festival created by Arts Centre Melbourne with Australian New York-based performer and curator Sophia Brous presented a hypnotic collision of music, performance, dance and theatre performances that drew standing ovations across the festival weekend.

The 2019 Supersense festival featured 17 Australian exclusives, 12 Australian premieres, and four world premieres, among various new works and collaborations.

Featuring artists from five continents performing within the underground labyrinth of Arts Centre Melbourne the 2019 festival of ecstatic performance was lauded "sublimely challenging", an "orgy of movement" and full of "creative energy."

"We are so thankful and inspired by the commitment of the wonderful artists and audiences who were part of Supersense,'' says Arts Centre Melbourne Head of Contemporary Performance David Anderson.

"This year's Supersense was a joy. It was a wonderful excursion into the power of visionary creative ideas, to challenge us, provoke us and draw out the purest states of transcendence, beauty and revelation," says Supersense curator Sophia Brous.

"The record audiences, sold out shows and pin-drop hush of audiences in deep focus across the weekend was such a beautiful thing to behold - it was truly magic. I hope all who attended carry the experiences of the shows with them for years to come - as I will."

Festival highlights included the Australian premieres of American theatre auteur and icon Robert Wilson performing John Cage's Lecture on Nothing, legendary free jazz group The Art Ensemble of Chicago in their 50th Anniversary tour with Australian greats The Necks, sublime New Zealand songwriter Aldous Harding in two sold-out Playhouse shows, a sold-out show from fellow New Zealander and divine troubadour Marlon Williams with The Impossible Orchestra, mind-blowing Indonesian ritual trio Setabuhan and the electrifying sold-out Friday MAXIMAL program featuring American music enigma John Maus, spoken word artist Moor Mother and the Merce Cunningham Centennial Solo performances.

SUPERDRONE, Supersense's free event presented as part of White Night Reimagined attracted 2,596 visitors on Saturday 24 August. The five-hour, stunning durational exploration into drone music featured Oren Ambarchi, Graham Lambkin, Lucy Cliché, Tony Buck and Chris Abrahams of The Necks, Fred Leone and Samuel Pankhurst of Yirinda, contemporary classical trio Golden Fur and Sophia Brous.

The Supersense total number of attendees for 2019 was 10,865 - an increase of 3,633 from 2017 and 2,397 in 2015.

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