NewActon is an award-winning cultural precinct in the heart of Canberra featuring a wonderful mix of hospitality, residential and commercial tenants. Employed by Molonglo in 2011, Dionysus founder David Caffery initiated and rapidly grew the NewActon Cultural Program into a high-quality array of experiences for hundreds of thousands of people.
David’s background in cultural philosophy at the Australian National University imbues the program with a unique acceptance and investigation of modern culture in its countless forms. The program has integrated all types of art into architectural and hospitality settings through festivals, markets, kids and mature-age concerts, talks and workshops, exhibitions, screenings, health programs and dance parties. The program has supported the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Symphony Orchestra and many smaller arts organisations whilst activating NewActon. During 2018 and 2019, Dionysus also managed a café and events space owned by Molonglo to activate the ground-plane of Nishi in tandem with Palace Cinema.
For close to a decade, the NewActon Cultural Program has been a constant offering of cultural diversity and community engagement for its residents and visitors – designed, delivered and communicated by Dionysus.
To create and maintain a cultural precinct that enriches the lives of residents and visitors.
Design, deliver and communicate cultural initiatives within NewActon.
October 2011 - March 2020
Art, Not Apart Festival, Sound and Fury Performance Art Party, Cellar Door Wine Market, Kids Cushion Concerts, and 33 other programs.
To celebrate the holiday season and present choral music in a non-traditional venue.
10+ performers, 200+ attendees
2013 - 2020
Three times a year
Outdoor cinema sessions in the NewActon courtyard for residents and visitors to unwind.
1 film, 1 band, 130+ attendees
2013 - 2015
Weekly during warm seasons
To present classical salon music with Canberra Symphony Orchestra ensembles in Monster Salon.
2-8 musicians, 100+ attendees
2014 - 2017
Seasonal, 4 shows a year
To showcase the world’s best performance poets alongside local writers in Hotel Hotel.
1 international artist, 3 local performance poets, 150+ attendees
2014 - 2016
To promote sustainable fashion practices in a fun and educational format.
1 facilitator, 2-4 models, 15-40 attendees
2016 - 2018
A few times a year
Set in a prime location on the ground level of the iconic Nishi building, Makeshift is a carefully curated space operating as a cafe during weekdays and gun-for-hire event space on weeknights and weekends. Dionysus has been engaged to manage the venue and its operations whilst also developing cultural events for activation.
The inaugural Canberra Mod/Soul weekender was held over three days and nights on April 2018 a d featured the crème de la crème of Australia's Mod and Soul community. Some of Australia's best DJs and record collectors spent all weekend digging deep through crates of soul, ska and classic r&b vinyls - and of course, dancing.