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Performing Arts Collection

The Performing Arts Collection is a rich, diverse and ever-evolving archive that records, preserves and displays the history of the performing arts in South Australia.

Image of a heavily embroidered gown with flowing tulle cape

The Adelaide Festival Centre’s Performing Arts Collection was established in 1979 by Premier Don Dunstan, making it the first of its kind in Australia. With over 100,000 items, the Collection represents significant contributions South Australians have made on stage and behind-the-scenes to dance, opera, music, drama and music theatre.

The Ian & Pamela Wall Gallery, located on the rooftop level of Her Majesty’s Theatre, is home to the Performing Arts Collection showcasing a year-round exhibition program with objects from the Collection.

Items in the Collection range from the ephemeral (programs and ticket stubs); artworks (paintings and photography); design (costume renderings and set models); architecture (theatre fittings, furniture and décor); textiles (costumes and millinery); objects (props) to archives and event files dating back to 1858.

Adelaide Festival Centre proudly houses the Performing Arts Collection. This invaluable resource can be accessed by the public by appointment only.

The Performing Arts Collection, Adelaide Festival Centre have compiled the website in good faith. Every reasonable effort has been made to identify, locate and contact the original copyright owners for the images used, but in some instances this has not been possible. If you are the copyright owner of an image used and not been properly acknowledged, please contact us so proper credit can be made.

The Performing Arts Collection wishes to thank the Digital Access Consultative Group 2022 for the Collection photographs for the website.

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