State of Excellence: Arts, Culture and Tourism

This evening, the Governor and Ms Annus hosted the third State of Excellence dinner. With a focus on “Arts, Culture and Tourism”, the event celebrated the quality and successes of these vitally important industries to Western Australia.

Guests were a mixture of state government representatives, tourism industry operators, media specialists, arts and culture leaders and providers, key decision-makers, sector leaders and experts in their fields – all brought together to encourage an open dialogue and expansive thinking around the ongoing potential and progression of this industry.

The relationship between Arts & Culture and Tourism is deep and long-standing, and it offers many pluses including economic benefits, connection within communities, cross-promotional opportunities, and the ability to offer something unique, vibrant and engaging that showcases the true essence of a destination. While both sectors found themselves heavily impacted by COVID-19, they didn’t just roll over, instead, they dodged the punches, fought incredibly hard for national and global presence and showcased just how resilient and vital they are to Western Australia.

During the past few years, holidays at home became the only real possibilities and figures show that since March 2021, Western Australians have spent a record amount on trips within the state. Special flight deals to the regions, joint packages and home grown arts, music and food festivals aided this rise in ‘backyard’ exploration. WA became the ‘road trip’ state and, thanks to tight border controls and a low COVID infection rate, major national events were able to relocate to our shores, such as the 2021 AFL Grand Final at Optus Stadium. This homegrown sentiment and lack of interstate and international stars also saw a rise in local talent being pushed to centre stage.

A hearty discussion of the past events brewed excitement for those upcoming – truly setting WA up as a hub for arts and culture and a key tourism destination.

Representatives in attendance included Tourism Western Australia, WA Government, West Australian Ballet, Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), Optus Stadium, Western Australian Indigenous Tourism Operators Council, WA Museum Boola Bardip, Go Cultural Aboriginal Tours, The Art Gallery of Western Australia (AGWA), Perth Festival, West Australian Opera, Aboriginal Cultural Centre Project, Storyd Group, West Australian Symphony Orchestra, Channel 9, Scoop Digital.

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