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Melbourne 2016 ISPA Congress - About Melbourne, Australia
Melbourne 2016 ISPA Congress


Schedule of Events 


Delegate List (PDF) 

Online Delegate Community

About Melbourne

Thanks to Our Sponsors

Meet the Host Team 

Melbourne, Australia


Australia is a truly unique and diverse island nation in every way - in culture, population, climate, geography, and history. 

Recognized around the world for its stunning natural beauty and iconic landmarks, Australia offers a deeply rich tapestry of cultures, experiences and adventures. In fact, Australian culture is as broad and varied as its landscape. Australia is multicultural and multiracial, which can be seen in the diversity of its food, lifestyle, and cultural experience.

Australia has an important heritage from its indigenous people, which plays a defining role in the cultural landscape of Australia. This diversity of influences generates a creative environment in that it is lively, energized, innovative and outward looking. It is a nation of storytellers and when you travel to the Melbourne 2016 ISPA Congress, you’ll leave with new memories and stories of your own to share back home. 

The prestigious international travel bible, Condé Nast, has named Australia the 2016 Destination of the Year – so, no excuses. Book your spot at the upcoming ISPA Congress in Melbourne now and start planning. Here’s some inspiration to get you excited >> Visit the official Australian tourism website.


Map of Australia

Come play in Melbourne – awarded the world’s most liveable city for the fifth consecutive year in 2015. 

It is a sophisticated, walkable city that is a foodie haven with hidden laneways, bars and arts spaces. Gorgeous wineries are just a short drive away.

Melbourne is the vibrant, cosmopolitan capital city of Victoria. With a diverse population of over 4 million people, the city is set around the shores of Port Phillip Bay and is home to many of Australia’s leaders in education, commerce, industry, research, science, design, finance – and of course the arts.  

Melbourne has a vibrant ever-expanding arts and culture community drawing artists from varied cultural backgrounds, with fantastic theatres, music venues, museums and galleries and an unparalleled annual calendar of festivals and major events.

Explore Melbourne on foot to make the most of what the city has to offer – cafes, bars, restaurants, shopping, beautiful gardens and world class galleries and museums, all discover-able via a labyrinth of interconnecting streets and laneways. 

The inner Melbourne precinct of Southbank is one of Victoria’s fastest growing areas and is home to one of the highest concentrations of arts organizations in the world. Within Melbourne’s Arts Precinct sits Arts Centre Melbourne alongside the nation’s leading arts and culture institutions, including:

With the Congress hosted in the heart of Melbourne’s Arts Precinct at Arts Centre Melbourne, delegates will be in walking distance of Federation Square, Melbourne’s iconic meeting place, which is also home to the indigenous culture center, the Koorie Heritage Trust, the internationally recognized Australian Centre for the Moving Image and the NGV Australia

Melbourne’s cultural calendar is in full flight during the Congress with performances across many of Melbourne’s venues. All within easy walking distance from Congress venues. Immerse yourself in:

  • exclusive showings of new work
  • acclaimed independent work
  • flagship performing arts companies
  • The Light in Winter directed by arts luminary Robyn Archer
  • Melbourne’s architecturally iconic, modern piazza – Federation Square – named 6th best public square in the world
  • Melbourne International Jazz Festival

To read more about Melbourne's Cultural Precinct, check out a terrific overview written by Robyn Archer for ISPA delegates. Robyn, who is a long-time ISPA member, and an Australian singer, performer, writer, artistic director and public advocate of the Arts, takes you around for a walking tour.

Cultural Diversity in Melbourne

Melbourne is home to more than 200 different nationalities speaking more than 200 different languages, making it Australia’s most multilingual city with nearly half a million native speakers of Asian languages.

If you love food and wine, then you’re in for a gastronomical treat in Melbourne. The city's diverse mix of cultures can be seen in the myriad restaurants, cafes, bistros and bars. Whether you are after contemporary, traditional, exotic or homespun flavors – Melbourne's eclectic dining scene offers a dizzying array of the international cuisines.

Share a glass of local wine, craft beer or cider, while snacking on delicious tapas in a laneway eatery, take on a Szechuan chili dish in Chinatown, or head out of the city to nearby Richmond for Vietnamese, Carlton to experience Melbourne’s 'Little Italy', Fitzroy for Spanish and Brunswick for Lebanese.

Delegates of the Melbourne 2016 ISPA Congress will have no trouble filling their spare time when in town and for those who want to explore further afield, the unique natural beauty of regional Victoria including the famous Great Ocean Road and the Twelve Apostles and the State’s award winning wineries are just a short trip away.

Discover more about Melbourne at the official visitor website of Melbourne, Australia.

Australia’s Performing Arts landscape

The 98th ISPA Congress in Melbourne, Australia is the perfect excuse to extend your stay and explore more of this unique and diverse country and the wealth of arts culture on show across the nation. 

Consider a visit to Hobart, Tasmania, home of the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) which has firmly established Hobart as a must-see destination since it opened in 2011. MONA hosts annual festivals MONA FOMA and DARK MOFO which hold cult status on the Australian cultural calendar. 

Or join colleagues and friends in Sydney for Vivid Sydney 2016 (27 May – 13 June, 2016). The Sydney harbour brims with light, including spectacular illumination of the Sydney Opera House sails and the best contemporary music artists in town take center stage for Vivid LIVE. The iconic Sydney Opera House is an UNESCO World Heritage Site with a wide range of performances presented in the venues, by numerous performing arts producers, including four key resident companies: Opera Australia, The Australian Ballet, the Sydney Theatre Company and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

For further information about Australia’s states and their arts and culture offerings please visit the official tourism sites below for more information:

Neighboring Regions

Planning to extend your visit in Asia Pacific? You might like to consider visiting some of our neighboring countries.

New Zealand 

The flight time from Melbourne, Australia to Auckland, New Zealand is 3 hours 46 minutes. For more information, visit the New Zealand tourism website.


The flight time from Melbourne (MEL) to Denpasar, Indonesia (DPS) is 6 hours 5 minutes. For more information, the Bali tourism website.