The grim reaper should be pleased: Melbourne is hosting a festival all about death and dying

After kicking off in Sydney last year, The Festival of Death and Dying is set to arrive in Melbourne for the first time, from the 9 – 10 September 2017, with workshops, performances, talks and ceremonies on a huge range of topics.

Highlights who will be headlining the festival include performance maker Allan Schacher with Share My Coffin, fashion designer Pia Interlandi with Dressing for Death, palliative care doctor Michael Barbato with End of Life Dreams and Visions, dance artist and educator Alice Cummins with Active Yielding, and philospher Peter Banki with social worker and activist Natalia Je showcasing Thresholds and Lust.

The brains behind the Festival of Death and Dying is Peter Banki who founded the Sydney Festival of Really Good Sex, and Victoria Spence, in collaboration with Dancehouse. The festival is part of a broader social change surrounding death, which includes “green” burials not-for-profit funeral homes and death midwifery. These encompass the notion that proximity to death can make us feel alive, and that life and death are not separate, but intertwined.

“[The Festival will] provide opportunities to learn practical things we all need to know about death and dying, as well as providing more embodied, philosophical and artistic approaches to the subject, which do justice to the full spectrum of what is at stake in our shared finite being with others,” festival director Dr. Peter Banki, Research Associate in Philosophy at the University of Western Sydney.

“As implied in the idea of a festival, one of our guiding questions will be to explore how to celebrate and be joyful in this life without denying all that is painful, difficult, even inconsolable,” he says.

Festival of Death and Dying
Melbourne: 9-10 September 2017
Dancehouse Studios: 150 Princes Street, North Carlton
Tickets: All inclusive $179 (low income), $275 (regular income), one day $125

The Festival of Death and Dying will also run in Sydney from the 7th to the 8th of October, 2017.

http://www.deathfest.net