Media releases

It’s Now or Never

27 April 2023

The City of Melbourne has today revealed its newest major event – Now or Never – a 17-day festival running from Thursday 17 August to Saturday 2 September. 

Now or Never will explore the intersection of art, ideas, sound and technology in various iconic venues across the city – attracting an expected crowd of more than 200,000 people. 

The uniquely Melbourne event has been designed to invite curiosity and wonder – an open call to explore the future in the present moment, with a series of engaging events across day and night that will draw huge crowds to the heart of Melbourne. 

Now or Never will showcase the city as a place to discover, learn and play – with daytime programming intersecting late-night culture, immersive digital experiences, adventurous performances, stirring discourse and more. 

The inaugural event’s program brings togetheran eclectic mix of local and internationally renowned musicians, artists, changemakers, future thinkers and innovators.  

An accessible and captivating program of free and ticketed events will take over city streets and venues – from late-night clubs spots to stately historic buildings, spanning large-scale events and intimate happenings.  

Now or Never combines the success and resources of Melbourne Music Week and Melbourne Knowledge Week – creating an unmissable cutting-edge festival. 

Further program details will be released in late May, with the full Now or Never program released in late June. 

For more information visit Now or Never.

Quotes attributable to Lord Mayor Sally Capp 

“The inaugural Now or Never festival will celebrate the evolution of Melbourne’s creative scene and provide an opportunity for Australians to experience experimental work from overseas.”  

“From groundbreaking music performances to immersive art installations, provocative talks and spectacular technology, the Now or Never program will be jam-packed with unmissable events and experiences for all ages.”  

“We’re looking forward to attracting new visitors to our city, showcasing our homegrown talent and supporting hundreds of local jobs and businesses in the process. We can’t wait to reveal the full program in the coming months.”  

Quotes attributable to City Activation portfolio lead Councillor Roshena Campbell 

“Major festivals and events are an enormous drawcard for tourists and visitors to Melbourne, providing a significant boost to the economy.” 

“We’re thrilled to be adding Now or Never – a new and innovative, large-scale annual festival – into the city’s bustling calendar of events.” 

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