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DANCEHOUSE, Former Carlton Community Hall

Architect: James Munro 1877

Inner North | IN08

Building Description

The Dancehouse two-storey brick hall was built in 1887, in just three weeks, under controversial circumstances for £2,000, during the election campaign for the new seat of Carlton. Since then, it has undertaken many changes in layout and function. It has gone from being operated by the Carlton Mechanics Institute as a subscription library to temporary housing post the Second World War, to accommodating the Carlton Community Centre’s school holiday programs in the 1970s. For the past 25 years, it has been the epicentre of independent dance practice in Australia. Its reputation and influence have crossed state boundaries to shape the art form nationally and internationally. Dancehouse is Australia’s only performing arts venue solely dedicated to the creation and presentation of contemporary dance. Its programs generate a kaleidoscope of opportunities and sit at a confluence of circulations of makers, ideas, spaces, contexts, publics, disciplines, and territories. During Open House Melbourne, visitors can enjoy a dance, a listen or a chat. Classes will be offered in diverse dance genres at 11:00, 12:15, 2:00 and 3:15, in addition to free tours at 10:30 and 2:30. Walk-ins for classes welcome but to ensure your place, book at Bookings open Monday 15 July.

What's On

Staff will guide you through this charming historic building, respond to your question.

Need to Know

  • Open: Saturday 27 July 10.30am–4.30pm

  • Tour Type: Open Entry, Guided + Open Entry, Self-guided

  • Tour Details: Tours at 10.30am and 2.30pm running 30 minutes in groups of 30.

  • Access: Fully accessible, limited mobility, all ages.

  • Notes: Refreshments available, toilets available, photography restrictions

  • Kids Activity: Some classes throughout the day are family friendly.  For more info book in at

  • Building Type: Cultural

  • Architecture Era: Victorian (1851-1901)

  • Transport: Tram stop 114: Princes St on routes 1, 6, 8

  • Photo Credit: Courtesy of of Dancehouse


150 Princes Street, Carlton North 3054, Carlton VIC


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