Performance Space presents the annual Liveworks Festival, with a program of performance, installation, dance, music, screen and conversation. This year, as they celebrate their 40th anniversary, the program will involve a mix of archival work, new commissions and birthday celebrations.

Thu 19 – Sun 22, Oct

Wed 25 – Sun 29, Oct

The Bridal Lament. Rainbow Chan. Still by Capsule48.

Presented by Performance Space in association with Carriageworks.


Liveworks 2023 | Opening Night 

Join us in the Public Space as we celebrate the beginning of Liveworks 2023. Featuring special performances by Performance Space artists, a DJ set by Stereogamous, food and drink, we welcome you to the start of another great festival. After the festivities, explore the rest of Carriageworks for your pick of the first round of Liveworks performances and installations.

Thu 19 Oct, 6pm
A women, bathed in green light covers her face with her left hand. She wears a wedding band on her ring finger.

An immersive dance performance by Brooke Stamp, Mickey speculates on the rehearsal studio as a place of experimentation and production usually not seen by the public. Informed by absorbed choreographic practice and dance history, Stamp’s body memory is presented as an improvised subconscious psychic waste, the content of the improvisation an articulation of what the artist terms ‘psychophysical’. Live recordings of Stamp’s improvised words seeded in the psyche are regurgitated in real-time by musician Daniel Jenatsch, to build a feedback loop that powers the work.

Thu 19 - Sat 21 Oct, 7pm & Sun 22 Oct, 5pm

A close up of a woman's face. She is wearing a radiational Cantonese headdress.
The Bridal Lament 

The Bridal Lament is an ambitious new performance and music project by award-winning vocalist, producer and multi-disciplinary artist Rainbow Chan 陳雋然. Drawing on her Weitou ancestry (first settlers of Hong Kong), the work reimagines a Weitou ritual known as the bridal lament, a public performance of grief in which a bride wept and sang in front of family and friends.  Conceived and structured as a song cycle, The Bridal Lament brings to life intergenerational and cross-cultural perspectives on diasporic experiences and the complex history of Hong Kong.

Thu 19 - Sat 21 Oct, 8:30pm Sun 22 Oct, 6:30pm

K'AINGA CommonWealth 

The K'AINGA whānau, Kilia Pahulu, Salvador Brown, and Sela Vai; led by Latai Taumoepeau and Rosanna Raymond promises to be hot, manaful and nourishing. K'AINGA CommonWealth - K’lub Measina – Night Dance of the Deities Rising from the deep sediment of the Moana, celestial deities emerge through the Star Mounds giving birth to an otherworldly realm of shiny things in the K’lub. DJs to be announced.

Sat 21 Oct, 8pm

Antistatic Redux 

Performance Space has championed and supported independent choreographic practice since the 80s. Initiatives such as Antistatic and Next Steps provided necessary platforms for independent choreographic practice. The 2023 Liveworks program presents a suite of works—new and from the archive—from some of Australia’s most well-respected and influential choreographers.

Thu 26 - Fri 27 Oct, 8:30pm 
Antistatic Redux: The real time it takes... 


Rosalind Crisp The ‘Mick Jagger’ of Australian dance is back. Still looking ‘wiry, scrapy and dangerously unpredictable’, this demon of contemporary dance has never stopped. One of Australia’s most rigorous and significant dance artists, Rosalind Crisp, celebrates 40 years of relentlessly undoing dance with her version of the retrospective.

Thu 26 - Sun 28 Oct, 7pm

Crime Writers...criminal intent 

Music drives the performers, history informs them and the perverse intrigues them. Crime is a potent signifier for these artists’ work, toying with notions of “conceit” and “deceit”. The criminal act has an indeterminate duration – sudden or committed over decades. Crime Writers … criminal intent assembles a cast of Performance Space alumni featuring Andrea Aloise, Kathy Cogill, Regina Heilmann, Nikki Heywood, Nigel Kellaway and Katia Molino.

We are sorry to announce that due to cast illness the following performances of Crime Writers ... criminal intent will not go ahead:  

Thu 26 - Fri 27 Oct, 7pm

Nighttime Righttime 

Co-curated by Rosie Dennis and Lara Thoms and initiated during the transition from 199 Cleveland Street to Carriageworks, the Nighttime program of experimental cross-artform works is returning with a mix of new short work commissions and a selection from the archive. 

Sat 28 Oct, 8pm & Sun 29 Oct, 6pm
Live Futures: Archive 

What is Performance Space if not its artists, companies and ensembles, its many audiences, and diverse communities? In reflecting not only on the making and doing of art and performance but also on the theorising and consideration of ideas, this coming together recognises that conversation - the who, what and why of art and artists, new forms of performance, as well as hybrid and intersectional practices and ‘the place of the space’ - have been central to Performance Space’s evolution over 40 years. Sarah Miller AM talks with R e a, Virginia Baxter AM & Keith Gallasch AM, Elvis Richardson and Dr Caroline Wake as they look to the future through the lens of the past.

Sun 22 Oct, 4pm

Live Futures: Access 

Co-Presented with Accessible Arts, this exciting panel will feature experimental artists Eugenie Lee, Riana Head-Toussaint, Dean Walsh Wart and will be MC’d by Debra Keenahan as they celebrate the diversity of artists across the Performance Space archive and program, and explore the rich contribution of artists with disability or who are d/Deaf to experimental practices.

Sun 22 Oct, 4pm

Live Futures: Dance 

Join a live conversation with four of Australia's leading women dancer/choreographers who have performed and made work at Performance Space across the decades. Tracing the impact of the performance landscape on their own contemporary dance practice and vice verse, the event will look at 'then, now and the future'.

Sat 28 Oct, 4pm

Live Futures: Queer Cultural Safety and Existential Risk 

More fun than it sounds. An immersive, collective, and intergenerational discussion on Queer strategies to make the changes we need to with love and face the existential risk of the climate emergency. Hosted by extra special guests in dialogue with all participants. There will be craft. There will be dancing. Join in the discussion to explore: What's working for us? What risks can we take? Where must we be care-full? What’s beyond 'doomerism'? How do we get there with joy?

Sun 29 Oct, 4pm

a person holding a light pole
AI Debate 

Explore the AI-art conundrum at our artist-led debate: Is AI a disruptor or a creator in the world of art? Join us for this free discussion and stay tuned for the revelation of the UnSeen Machine poll results on the fate of AI-generated art.

Sun 29 Oct, 2pm
40th Birthday Karaoke Party 

Featuring a karaoke theme, this birthday party includes love song tributes from special guests and Performance Space alumni to celebrate four decades of boundary-pushing art and the artists who have made this legacy possible.

Sat 28 Oct, 6pm



cLUB bENT’s original Euphoria Guardians, Victoria Spence, Groovii Biscuit and Daniel Mudie Cunningham, invite revelers back into the underworld of their embodied queerness to summon the wisdoms and courage of proverbial prophets, priestesses, renegades and iconoclasts of today and yesteryear to divine what is ‘bENT’ in 2023, as well as how far bACK are we willing to go to find out?

Sat 28 Oct, 9pm
ReelDance / Dance (Lens) 

For Liveworks 2023, ReelDance’s founding Director, Erin Brannigan, returns with a curated program of films from the archive featuring the work of some of the most influential, Sydney-based independent choreographers and dancers. ReelDance is joined by Dancehouse's Dance (Lens), a curated program of new national and international films by Siobhan Murphy, Feras Shaheen and Gitta Wigro.

Thu 19 - Sun 22 & Wed 25 - Sun 29 Oct

Channels and Spells 

Channels and Spells surveys the important role Performance Space has played in supporting and presenting innovative film and video work throughout its 40-year history. Taking cues from Video Spell, a four-part exhibition series curated by Blair French during 2003–04 at Performance Space, Channels and Spells engages with diverse approaches to the performative in video work.

Thu 19 - Sun 22 & Wed 25 - Sun 29 Oct

Night 1001 

Night 1001 is an exhibition and live re-voicing of the last night of Barbara Campbell’s durational performance 1001 nights cast (2005–2008). The project saw her telling a new story live and online at sunset every night for 1001 consecutive nights. Each story in the collection had been written in response to a prompt Barbara extracted from that day’s newspaper reports on events in the Middle East. 

Thu 19 - Sun 22 & Wed 25 - Sun 29

Naarm-based artist Elvis Richardson is passionate about collecting and collections, creating installations that probe the ethics, politics and poetics of institutional collections as reconstituted artistic ready-mades. A tribute to the mnemonic monuments comprising a history of creative experimentation and the evolving typographic styles that shape it, PERFORMANCE ARTIST 4EVA♡ unleashes a four-decade force of chaotic memories.

Thu 19 - Sun 22 & Wed 25 - Sun 29 Oct

Proof by Heidrun Löhr draws on Löhr’s archive of more than 300,000 images to create a large-scale installation in the public space. Featuring images of more than 200 artists, Proof, celebrates Löhr’s authentic relationship with body, light, time and space.

Thu 19 - Sun 22 & Wed 25 - Sun 29 Oct