Live at the Bowl ups the ante with a genre-bending summer line-up

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Live at the Bowl ups the ante with a genre-bending summer line-up

Live at the Bowl - Synthony
Words by Bridget McArthur

If, like most of Melbourne, you’re wondering what day/month/year it is, the return of Live at the Bowl can only mean one thing.

It’s Melbourne summer, baby – and Arts Centre Melbourne are committed to making it one of the most memorable ones yet with a knock-out line-up of home-grown Aussie acts.

Plus, this year, for the first time since 2019, the event will be joined by international acts the likes of London Grammar, Flight Facilities, BENEE, Kings of Leon, Peggy Gou, Boris Brejcha and Thomas Schumacher.

Stay up to date with what’s happening in and around Melbourne here.

The diverse open-air program, which will take place over four months from January to April at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl on Wurundjeri Land, includes bands, orchestras, DJs, dance and circus events, many of which are community-led and family-friendly.

To help get your event shortlist in order, we’ve outlined some of our top suggestions below. Keep an eye out for more exciting program announcements throughout the series.

The Teskey Brothers with Orchestra Victoria

For the first time ever performing together in front of a live audience, Aussie favourites The Teskey Brothers and Orchestra Victoria will grace the stage later this month to celebrate the recent release of their live album Live at Hamer Hall.

The once-in-a-lifetime event will see the multi-award-winning Warrandyte band’s popular catalogue of blues rock tracks reimagined with a 45-piece ensemble.

If that’s not enough to win you over, the unique set-up will be supported by acclaimed Indigenous vocalist Emma Donovan and Melbourne rhythm combo The Putbacks, opening the event with their unique brand of Australian soul.

The event is happening from 6.30pm January 22. Tickets cost $90-110.

The Jungle Giants

Picture this: the sun is setting on yet another balmy summer night. You’re bathing in the golden hour glow as your friend snaps the perfect Polaroid of you dancing on the grass, framed by the Sidney Myer Music Bowl. Could you be any more Melbourne?

In front of you, The Jungle Giants are blasting out tunes from Love Signs – a genre-bending new album thick with addictive beats and a custom-built tubulum.

Brisbane-born, the Hottest 100 royals have been thoroughly Melbourne-adopted, with such high demand for their tickets that they’ve made a name for themselves as sell-outs (in the best of ways), frequently tacking on additional shows to appease local fans.

The event will be the fourth show of (yet another) rescheduled album launch tour, set to be the biggest to date, with the independent four-piece voyaging to the United States, Canada and United Kingdom later this year.

The evening at the Bowl will be opened with a DJ set from special guest and dance-pop legends Bag Raiders.

The event is happening from 6.30pm January 29. Tickets cost $89-100.

City Sessions

Approaching its 10-year milestone, City Sessions returns to the Bowl this February in a celebration of street and social dance, presented by Cypher Culture.

The freestyle dance battle showcase will feature the best of a variety of social, cultural and community dance forms that inhabit the expansive local street and social dance landscape. Performers will be shortlisted from the free preliminaries event, which punters can also attend on January 22 on Arts Centre Melbourne’s forecourt.

Uniquely, this year, special guest judges will be watching on stage, before awarding a winning duo in each category – hip hop, house and funk.

More announcements still to come, including artists, DJs, judges and music acts.

The event is happening from 5pm February 5. Tickets cost $15.  

Synthony No.2

Apart from being a damn good pun, Synthony No. 2 is one of Live at the Bowl’s unmissable events this summer.

Following sold out shows on the 2021 Tour, this year the Synthony crew is coming back bigger and better than ever with a brand-new show (thus No. 2).

Featuring Savage, Emily Williams, Andy Van, Mobin Master and more, the collision of electronic dance music, 60-piece orchestra, DJs, vocalists and epic visuals will be a night to remember.

It’s futurism mixed with nostalgia, with club anthems by artists like Avicii, Tiesto, Daft Punk, Eric Prydz, Bob Sinclar and more.

The event is happening from 6pm February 18. Tickets cost $99-139.

One Song: The Music of Archie Roach

2022 Sidney Myer Free Concerts: Legendary singer-songwriter and ‘voice of the Stolen Generations’, Archie Roach AM, brings the story to the Bowl this February in collaboration with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (MSO).

At the centre of the performance is a celebration of song lines. In the middle of Naarm, Roach celebrates this big idea: that we have mapped our journey as human beings across the oceans and lands of the world through song. We have sung the world into existence, into meaning. The common thread of song links back to an origin, to the birth song of all things.

MSO Composer in Residence Pail Grabowsky AO has been a key collaborator and will play piano for the performance, led by conductor Benjamin Northey. Bring your picnic rug and contemplate life and song at sunset.

The event is happening from 7.30pm February 19. It’s free and non-ticketed. More info

More awesome Live at the Bowl gigs in 2022

Auslan Interpretation will be available for people who communicate using Australian Sign Language (Auslan). To book seats near the interpreter, please use this booking link.

Double vaccination will be required to attend all Live at the Bowl events. Face masks are strongly recommended at all time. This event features hand sanitiser stations, card-only payments, contact tracing and venue cleaning.

For tickets and more information, head to the Live at the Bowl website.