The ultimate guide to Firelight Festival

It’s cold, the skies are grey, but one sure-fire way to warm up this winter is to head to the Firelight Festival. Returning bigger and better in 2018, the explosive opening weekend features pyrotechnics, flame jets, fire drums, food and fun. And there’ll be endless entertainment throughout July, with a range of gourmet activities to warm up your winter nights. It’s time to fire up!

Man blowing fire with crowd watching

Be mesmerised by the fire performers

Opening weekend

The fiery wonder of the Docklands Firelight Festival ignites with a bang at New Quay Promenade for the Opening Weekend. Experience a spectacular nightly pyrotechnic display, flame jets, fire drums, roving performers and eclectic music.

Things fire up from 5pm to 10pm each night from 29 June to 1 July. A giant wooden sculpture will be cast adrift in Victoria Harbour and set ablaze to create an amazing visual for festival goers. Fabulous food and family fun will help ease the chill of the winter solstice. Fire breathers and fire twirlers will provide roving entertainment, alongside live music from a punked-out New Orleans brass band, jazz performers, Gypsy beats and a one-man band.

Wooden bird sculpture in crowd

See Christian Patton’s sculptures set alight each night of the opening eeekend

The Long Dinners 

Inspired by long-table dining experiences around the world, Docklands presents an exquisite culinary event at Collins Square. The Firelight Festival Long Dinners will be held at Chiara on 3 July and 31 July, in celebration of extravagant winter merriment. The indulgent three-course event will introduce you to the rich flavours of Italy, while the night comes alive with fire performances.

Hands warming by flames

Warm up by the fire drums

Fireside Storytelling

Gather the family around the fire for stories told by special guest Jo Stanley from her literary series Play like a Girl. This special Fireside Storytelling event at Buluk Park on 5 July will ignite the night, while you dine on delicious dishes from your own customised Docklands dining hamper. There’s soul-warming chocolate from Kep Whitley and Italian delights courtesy of Saluministi.

Catch one of 40 performances across the opening weekend

Speakeasy Series

If you love a good show as much as a fine cocktail, embrace an evening of 1930s-style revelry with the Speakeasy Series. Warm your soul, as well as your body, with tapas, cocktails and performances from local musicians, at renowned late-night haunts like Hightail Bar, Oscars Table, Tap831 and Watermark Docklands.  Perfect for a solstice-inspired late-night rendezvous and a wonderfully-warming way to wind down after a long work day. From 10 to 26 July.

Firelight Festival food

Tuck into the warming fare at the Firelight Festival Opening Weekend

Dining at Docklands

To celebrate the faithful Melbourne foodie, the Dining and Docklands workshops and progressive dinners are designed for feasting and delivering decadent indulgence of epic proportions.

It all kicks off on 12 July at Bar Nacional for a progressive dinner taking in 90 Secondi and The Hof Downtown from 6-9pm. On 18 July, sail around Docklands from 6-7pm enjoying canapés from local eateries and taking in the city lights from the water with City River Cruises and Cargo. Then to round out a month of foodie fun on 24 July, Saluministi will ignite your inner Italian spirit with hands-on, fire-inspired cheese-smoking workshops.

Want to keep up to date with Firelight Festival news? Check out the Firelight Festival Facebook event page.