Backstreet Christmas Day 12: Gifting an Experience


If you’ve followed along with 12 Days of Christmas at Backstreet Brisbane – thank you! Supporting local means a lot to me and it’s great to see so many others with the same enthusiasm. This year, the twelfth and final day of Backstreet Brisbane’s 12 Days of Christmas is about giving the gift of an experience, from workshops and at-home making to tickets, season passes, and subscriptions. Thanks again, and wishing you a happy holiday season.

Creative Experiences & New Skills

Cork and Chroma

You can book a private event with your nearest and dearest or join a public session to Paint and Sip at Cork & Chroma, and they also offer online sessions. Founded on the idea that everyone is creative, and being creative can benefit everyone, Cork and Chroma seeks to make the elusive creative process more accessible. Led by founders Hillary and B.J. Wall, the company is made up of a team of kind and talented artists who believe in the power of creative connection, and take joy in helping people feel comfortable to freely express themselves. The first Cork & Chroma paint and sip studio opened its doors in Brisbane in 2013 and they now operate across several studio locations in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

Biome Workshops

Launched in Paddington 20 years ago, Biome now employs 100 people across online and six physical stores in Brisbane, Melbourne, and the Gold Coast and focus on ethical and sustainable products, sourced primarily from Australian small businesses (also a great place to find a gift!)

They offer a range of workshops, teaching you how to create your own body and hair care, cleaning and home products, and teaching self-sufficiency and traditional crafts. A dear friend took me to a workshop at Biome for my birthday a few years ago, and it was a really excellent experience – great to chat to new people and learn a new skill!

Work Shop

16 Austin Street, Newstead

Work Shop aims to provide affordable short courses in life skills and alternative art, collaborate with local artists and industry experts to teach classes and utilise local suppliers for any materials needed. From beekeeping and welding through to ceramics, jewellery, fabric dying, car maintenance… they offer a broad range of fun and creative short courses for life skills and personal development. Gift vouchers are also available.

Lazer Unicorn

DIY Kits, Group Workshops & Online Courses to help you get creative with laser cutting, from Alex Lawton. Book into a workshop, or you can join the waitlist for the Make at Home Earring Care Kits, to have the Lazer Unicorn Workshop experience delivered to your door. Lazer Design School also offers friendly online courses to create your dream collection of laser cut jewellery.

Mas and Miek Ceramic House

11 Byres Street, Newstead

Mas and Miek Ceramic House offer one-off workshops and longer courses. The workshops change month to month, and most workshops delve into a certain ceramic technique which are perfect for beginners (and for more advanced students wishing to push their practice further). Within these workshops, Mas and Miek will finish off your pieces for you (glaze & fire) ready for you to collect a few weeks later. They also hace an online course, Clay Classes at Home, so you can become a ceramic artist from your kitchen bench.

Dabbler Studio

241 G Station Road Yeerongpilly, QLD

Dabbler is a Brisbane based hand building studio facilitating a range of workshops for anyone wanting to dabble into clay. Founded by ceramicist Bonnie Hislop, Dabbler has a team of highly skilled teachers that will develop the technical ability of students but also build confidence in artistic growth and ensure that every step of the way is an enjoyable experience. Dabblers are welcomed into a space for creative exploration and play, and the space is designed to let your mind wander and learn in a safe and welcoming environment.

Jet Black Cat Music

Music counts as an experience! West End institution Jet Black Cat Music is an independent record store selling vinyl and hosting instore events. JBCM stocks new music from local and international artists and their online store allows you to check out what is coming up, pre-order vinyl, and purchase some of the great stock they have in store.  

Paint Juicy

Owned and operated by Burleigh Heads locals, Paint Juicy is a paint and sip studio located in Burleigh Heads and Upper Coomera, with venue partners up and down Queensland. Paint Juicy started as a dream to create an inclusive space for the LGBTIQA+ community, and they are passionate about providing a safe space to relax in, have some wine, be surrounded by delightful individuals and paint some dazzling (or not so much) artwork. Their sessions are themed, can include entertainment such as their fabulous Drag Queen, Shushu Funtanna, or Male Nude Life Painting, and they offer team building, birthday parties, hens parties and private paint and sip events. Gift cards and paint at home kits are also available.

Tickets, Season Passes & Subscriptions

Queensland Museum & Science Centre

A great gift for adventurous minds young or old – annual membership entitles holders to unlimited entry to SparkLab for 12 months, discounts at the Museum shop and café, discounted tickets to selected Museum events and exhibitions, and access to the Museum research library. Members can also gain free general admission to partner museums in Sydney, Perth and Melbourne. Check their website for current and upcoming exhibitions.

Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA)

For the art lover in your life, annual membership to QAGOMA grants access to advanced notice of upcoming exhibitions, after-hours viewing opportunities, and discounts on exhibition tickets, shopping and dining. Plus, a free exhibition ticket when you join or renew!

Queensland Theatre

Queensland’s state theatre company is back on stage and back at full capacity, and their 2022 season has launched:

  • Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? 12-26 February
  • First Casualty 12 March – 9 April
  • Don’t Ask What The Bird Look Like 30 April – 14 May
  • Bernhardt/Hamlet 28 May – 18 June
  • The Sunshine Club 9 – 30 July
  • The Almighty Sometimes 13 Aug – 3 September
  • Othello 10 September – 1 October
  • Vietgone 29 October – 19 November

Read all about Queensland Theatre’s 2022 Season here on the blog.

Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble

Since its inception in 2001, the Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble has gained a reputation for energetic, accessible, and unique productions, world-class training, and a commitment to community through projects such as the renowned Shakespeare Prison Project. QSE are yet to announce their 2022 productions, but generally offer extensive training opportunities throughout the year as well as their Shakespeare Beyond projects including the Shakespeare Prison Project, A Night At The Theatre and Relaxed Performances; Theatre of the Oppressed; and Shakespeare’s Shorts.

In my opinion, QSE perform the best Shakespeare in Brisbane, and their focus on accessibility makes their productions a great gift for those who may be new to theatre, or Shakespeare, or both.

La Boite Theatre Company

La Boite have announced their 2022 season, with 4 exciting mainstage productions:

  • Seven Methods of Killing Kylie Jenner 24 February – 12 March
  • The Last Five Years 30 May – 18 June
  • An Ideal Husband 18 July – 6 August
  • Tiddas 5-24 September

La Boite will also bedeveloping a slate of new work by local theatre-makers through the Artist Development Program, including new commissions by Merlynn Tong, Ellen van Neerven, David Burton, Dead Puppet Society, Lewis Treston, and the Aha Ensemble.

You can also become a member with La Boite, which includes discounts to their mainstage productions, free tickets to new work showings and events, invitations to special events, access to opening night tickets, and exclusive behind-the-scene content and promotional offers from La Boite’s partners. 

Savoyards Musical Theatre Company

Polished and professional amateur theatre company Savoyards are based out of Wynnum and in 2021 celebrated 60 years! They will perform Little Shop of Horrors in March 2022 at The Star Theatre, Manly, with other 2022 productions to be announced.

Queensland Symphony Orchestra

Epic symphonies from the classical canon, world premieres by Australian composers, and concerts that joyously celebrate modern music-makers headline Queensland Symphony Orchestra’s 2022 Season. It’s a season that shines the spotlight on its own with spine-tingling solos, and promises special moments for music lovers of all ages across all of Queensland as the Orchestra celebrates 75 music-filled years.

The 2022 Season stars 10 Maestro concerts, five Morning Masterworks, five Music on Sunday concerts, six Studio Sessions, six Special Events and a full regional touring program and education series; a joyous, celebratory, breathtaking and awe-inspiring program that is also poignantly reflective of the challenges of the past 18 months.

Read more about the QSO 2022 season here on the blog

Opera Queensland

Opera Queensland has announced their 2022 season:

  • The Sopranos 29 March – 2 April
  • La Traviata 14 – 23 July
  • The Call & The Human Voice 20 – 24 September

In addition to these mainstage productions, OQ will again present their intimate Studio Series, the Festival of Outback Opera, and the Opera Queensland Gala, as well as The Frog Prince and La Boheme reimagined for children and young adults, respectively.

Opera Club membership entitles members to a variety of benefits including discounts on select performances, a calendar of live and digital events, and behind the scenes exclusives, including connecting with the artists and creative teams.

Australasian Dance Collective

ADC will present a new iteration of THREE at the QPAC Playhouse in March, with a trio of new works showcasing the versatility of the company artists. THREE 2022 will feature new works by Queensland dancer and choreographer, Kate Harman, award-winning Sydney-based choreographer and filmmaker, Cass Mortimer Eipper and a third choreographer yet to be announced.

ADC will also showcase its Youth Ensemble again in August with Echo, working with Queensland dance-makers and artists to develop new and exciting performance works.

Queensland Ballet

In 2022, Queensland’s state ballet company will open their redeveloped home, the Thomas Dixon Centre, and present a mainstage season peppered with classics as well as their annual events such as Bespoke, the Academy Gala, and The Nutcracker. 2022 marks 10 years of the company being under the leadership of Li Cunxin as Artistic Director, and Li’s Choice is a triple bill that celebrates that milestone. Queensland Ballet will also present six performances at Home of The Arts (HOTA) on the Gold Coast as part of a new partnership.

  • Giselle 14 – 23 April 2022
  • Li’s Choice 10 – 25 June 2022
  • Peter and the Wolf 24 June – 2 July 2022
  • Bespoke 20 – 30 July 2022
  • Queensland Ballet Academy Gala 12 – 14 August 2022
  • Manon 28 September – 8 October 2022
  • The Nutcracker 2 – 23 December 2022

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