Play a role in Festival’s biggest spectacle

Published: 04 Jun 2021

The Mackay Festivals team are looking for two exuberant individuals to help pull the strings of a giant illuminated puppet at DBCT Illuminate.

There are also opportunities for budding artists to join creative workshops to create puppets and displays for the Mackay Festival of Arts event.

Mayor Greg Williamson said the Spare Parts Puppet Theatre team were on the lookout for a couple of locals interested in puppeteering.

“These are paid positions that will offer budding puppeteers a fun and educational experience,” Mayor Williamson said.

“Successful applicants will interact with the public and work with the Spare Parts team to animate a giant hand-woven puppet, called String Symphony, that was created using more than a kilometre of rope,” he said.

Local artist Wanda Bennett said dates had also just dropped for the free community workshops at Canelands Central.

She said there would be two workshops a day on July 6, 8, 17 and 18 – one from 10am to noon and the other from 1pm to 4pm.

The free workshops will take place next to Myer and the main entrance on the ground floor.

“Bookings are now open to join us to create your own lantern or UV arts and crafts creation to go on display at DBCT Illuminate,” Ms Bennett said.

“We have a lot of fun and supply all the material,” she said. “We’d love to see the whole family take part, as these are very much all-ages workshops and are great fun for young and ‘grown-up’ artists alike,” she said.

“Participants can book to attend both sessions in one day, which is a great idea if you want to make something large and more intricate.”

Children 13 years and under must be accompanied by an adult and this adult must also book in for a spot.

Ms Bennett said she would be joined at the workshops by a team of experienced local artists.

“Lalune Croker, Cheb Jefferies, Lisa Roebig Holmes, Tracey Johnson and I will act as facilitators and will be only too happy to assist you to bring your creations to fruition,” she said.

Spare Parts Puppet Theatre will also be running creative workshops at the MECC.

Mayor Williamson said the team would deliver two free puppet making workshops, on Thursday, July 22 and Friday, July 23 – both at 9am.

To book your spot in any of the workshops, head to

DBCT Illuminate 2021

This year’s spectacle will take place from July 22 to 24, from 6pm to 9pm, on the Mackay Bluewater Trail (from Caneland Park to Bluewater Quay).

The event will feature a rainbow sea of interactive neon wire sculptures that change shape, a network of ropes waiting to come to life, a flexible, interactive music installation and a sea of community creations.

DBCT Illuminate will run in three 45-minute sessions each night at 6pm, 7pm and 8pm. Each session will have a limited capacity.

Book your free tickets now at