For the 7th year in a row, families are in for a treat as the Spot On Children’s Festival returns to Riverside Theatres. From Tuesday 9th to Saturday 13th October, there will be a great line up of over 20 live shows, two films, drama workshops, free opening party and stacks of other free activities for families.
We hope our Spot on Children’s Festival Guide will help you hit the spot with attending this wonderful local festival.
Thanks to Riverside Theatre, you have the chance to WIN one of six double passes to some of the wonderful Spot On Festival live shows!! We will be running three competitions in the lead up to the Festival on our Facebook page so make sure to follow our page. Further details about the competitions and how to enter can be found on each competition page.
- [CLOSED] Competition 1: Win tickets to Lah Lah 10th Birthday Party and Josephine Wants To Dance.
- [CLOSED] Competition 2: Win tickets to Kaput and The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik. Competition runs from Thursday 20th September to Monday 25th September.
- (CLOSED] Competition 3: Win tickets to Big Bad Wolf and Gran’s Bag. Competition runs from Monday 1st to Thursday 4th October.
Here are our top five picks from this years exciting Spot On Festival program.
Featuring the new kids on the block in children’s entertainment, Avocado Smash, this interactive show will have kids dancing, singing and having a smashing time!
- Tuesday 9 October at 9:30am
- Best suited to 2 to 7yrs
This multi-award-winning interactive family show has melted hearts around the world with its glorious brand of slapstick, acrobatics and total silliness.
Be swept up in the mayhem that is the larger-than-life ‘elegant buffoon’ Tom Flanagan, as one man’s life is flipped upside-down by the lonely, dust-covered world that surrounds him. The likeable, luckless hero struggles to get the upper hand, taking one step forward and two steps back until everything is…well…kaput.
- Tuesday 9th October at 2pm; Wednesday 10th October at 10am & 12:30pm
- Best suited to 5yrs+
- Single tickets $24; family pass $80
Two year olds are invited to enter a playful world of shapes and pathways, stepping stones and lines, with two friendly dancers and a live guitarist. The children become part of the performance themselves or can observe from a safe distance, touching and going – just as they need to.
- Tuesday 9th and Wednesday 10th October at 10am, 11:15am & 12:45pm
- Children must be 2 years old at the time of the performance
- Ticket for 1 child and 1 carer $20
An immersive and engaging workshop that will help participants develop their confidence in drama, whilst exploring the beloved picture book in a new and exciting way.
- Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 October at 11am & 1pm
- Best suited for kids 5 to 8yrs
- Ticket $20
With plenty of audience interaction, this hilarious, table-turning production will reintroduce the Big Bad Wolf as a vegetarian, poetry-writing, people person and have you wondering why you were so scared in the first place.
- Tuesday 9 October at 10:30am & 1pm (Relaxed Performance); Wednesday 10 October at 10:30am
- Best suited to kids 5 to 10yrs
- Single ticket $26; family pass $88
Key Info for Attending the Spot On Children’s Festival
- Single ticket prices range from $0 to $26.
- The festival is best suited to kids 2 to 13 years.
Family Friendly Features
- A number of the lives performances are relaxed performances. During relaxed performances, the theatre lights will be kept on, children can meet the performers before the show, and there are no rules on entering or leaving the theatre throughout the performance.
- Toilets, baby change facilities, pram access and pram parking are available.
- Children under 18 months must be seated on their carer’s laps and are free of charge. Children 18 months and over are required to have a ticket.
Food and Places Nearby
- The Riverside bar sells sandwiches, snacks, drinks, popcorn and other treats.
- Riverside is part of the Responsible Café program. Bring your own reusable cup to receive a $0.50 discount on tea and coffee.
- There are many family-friendly cafes within walking distance. Such as River Cafe Parramatta, Bay Vista, Social Hideout and Bondi Pizza.
- Across the road from Riverside Theatres is Prince Alfred Square. And a short walk along the Parramatta River Foreshore is the Parramatta River Foreshore Reserve. Within this reserve is an adventure playground with a giant slide, sand pit, water pump and lots to climb.
Spot On Festival Program
Festival Opening Party with Avocado Smash: Kick off this year’s Spot On Children’s Festival at the Opening Party featuring the new kids on the block in children’s entertainment, Avocado Smash! This interactive show will take you on a journey around the world and have you up on your feet dancing, singing and having a smashing time.
| 2-7yrs | FREE | 9.30am on 9th October |
Big Bad Wolf: He’s the most misunderstood character in fairy tale history. But then he does have incredibly sharp teeth, yellow eyes and his own ideas about personal hygiene, and he is the infamous Big Bad Wolf after all. Luckily one girl is brave enough to double check this wolf’s bad press and an unlikely friendship is born.
| 5-10yrs | $26 | 10:30am and 1pm on 9th Oct; 10:30am on 10th October |
Kaput: This multi-award-winning interactive family show has melted hearts around the world with its glorious brand of slapstick, acrobatics and total silliness.
| 5yrs+ | $24| 2pm on 9th Oct; 10am and 12:30pm on 10th October |
Touch & Go: 2 year olds are invited to enter a playful world of shapes and pathways, stepping stones and lines, with two friendly dancers and a live guitarist.
| 2-3yrs | $20 | 10am, 11:15am and 12:45pm on 9th and 10th October |
The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik: In a last ditch effort to save the human race, our hero Alvin Sputnik must journey down through the mysterious depths of the deep blue sea, to find a new place for humankind to live. Featuring a fusion of animation, puppetry, projections, live and recorded music, this visually spectacular, inventive and award winning production will captivate and spark the imaginations of your whole family.
| 10yrs+ | $24 | 6pm on 11th October; 10:30am and 1pm on 12th October; 10:30am on 13th October |
Josephine Wants to Dance: A delightfully funny tale that looks at the importance of believing in yourself and realising your dreams.
| 4-9yrs | $26 | 2pm on 11th October; 10am and 12:30pm on 12th October |
Gran’s Bag: Jam-packed full of puppets, bags large and small, songs and stories Gran’s Bag is a funny and heart-warming show that will delight the young and young at heart.
| 3-10yrs | $18 | 10am, 12pm and 2:15pm on 11th October |
Lah-Lah 10th Birthday Party: Come and party with stars of ABC KIDS Lah-Lah’s Big Live Band as they celebrate their 10th Birthday at Riverside’s Spot On Children’s Festival.
| 2-7yrs | $26 | 11am on 13th October|
We are once again looking forward to enjoying all the FREE activities at the Spot On Children’s Festival. They will be on daily from 9:30am to 3:30pm in the Riverside courtyard.
- Face Painting (until 2pm daily)
- Play Gym
- Craft with Anney Bee’s Art Hive (until 2:30pm daily)
- Parramatta Library’s Reading Tent
- Chalkboard Art
- Parramatta Actors Centre showcases and drama workshops (Tuesday 12pm– 12:30pm, Wednesday 11:30am – 12pm, Thursday 11am – 11:30am & 1pm – 1:30pm, Friday 11am – 11:30am, Saturday 12:30pm – 1pm)
There will be two children’s films at the Spot On Festival – Maya the Bee 2: The Honey Games and Mirai. And you can watch them for the bargain ticket price of $10 per person, or $35 for a family of four.
- Maya The Bee: The Honey Games (G film) – 10:15am on 12th and 13th October
- Mirai (PG film) – 1:30pm on 12th and 13th October
ATYP Storytelling Workshop: Do you have a story to tell or a character you want to develop? Discover how easy it is to create a story and just how much fun you will have doing this with new friends.
| 4-8yrs | $25 | 10am and 1:30pm on 11th October |
Josephine Wants to Dance: Drama Workshop: This workshop is guaranteed to help kids develop their confidence in drama, whilst exploring the beloved picture book in a new and exciting way.
| 5-8yrs | $20 | 11am and 1pm on 9th and 10th October |
ATYP to the Rescue: Drama Workshop: Explore themes of friendship, loyalty and adventure. Learn about objectives and obstacles and work on character development techniques, while you explore the jungle, cross the desert or maybe journey to the North Pole. There is no limit to where your imagination will take you in this fun workshop.
| 8years+ | $25 | 10am and 1:30pm on 12th and 13th October |
About Riverside Theatres
Riverside Theatres celebrates its 30th birthday this year and is now home to 1,200 events every year. It has three venues under the one roof and is a leading entertainment venue and performing arts centre in Greater Sydney.
Riverside Theatres work to bring children to the arts and the arts to children in the most exciting ways possible. They select from Australia’s best children’s theatre makers to ensure that parents enjoy the experience as much as their kids.
Local Family Friendly Performing Arts Centre
Riverside Theatres provide a number of facilities and services that help make it a more enjoyable experience for families, including:
- Lots of booster seats available – just ask an usher at your door
- Space to park prams
- A relaxed courtyard for the kids to run around
- Baby change facilities
Getting to Riverside Theatres
Located on the banks of the Parramatta River, near the Eat Street precinct, Riverside Theatres is easily accessible by bus, ferry and car. And you can also get there via Parramatta train station.
There are a few car parks to choose from nearby:
- Novotel Parramatta (across the road) – $10.00 per 6 hour period from time of entry
- Secure Parking – Riverbank
- Secure Parking – Eat Street. Riverside patrons can park here at a flat rate of $5 after 6pm on weekdays and all day weekends. To receive the discounted rate, you need to request a discount voucher from the Riverside Theatres Box Office or the Riverside Bar prior to returning to your vehicle.