Tanks Arts Centre is one of the most highly distinctive and dynamic performance spaces in the country. Tanks’ main performance space, Tank 5, has a licensed bar and standing capacity of 650 (seated 400). The rugged, old oil-stained poles and sheer concrete walls imbue the venue with a Gothic charm that never fails to impress both performer and punter alike. With a strong focus on music in this program expect to see the best of Australian and International artists working in a range of forms from Country to Hip Hop, and including the continuation of the highly successful contemporary jazz series, Jazz Up North.
"Tanks is in my top 5 of the best venues I´ve ever played" - Tex Perkins
“We love playing at The Tanks. It´s a unique venue and everyone looks after us wonderfully well.” – The Necks
"Who would have thought a gigantuan tank could scrub up so good? And feel so romantic-like! There were candles and palm-tree fronds everywhere.And everyone seemed to know everyone, and treat us like they knew us too, which we appreciated very much. No wonder it’s (reportedly) Tex Perkin’s favourite venue! He’s played a few – he should know." Clare Bowditch
"The Tanks in a unique performing space - both intimate and grandiose. I´ve not sung before in a room with such a live, but warm sound - and we loved the nature sounds during the night (a gecko I believe)." - Michelle Nicolle
“That’s the best onstage sound I’ve ever had in my whole career” – Rob Snarski, The Blackeyed Susans
“I love the place. I love the atmosphere. It’s always a good sound and there’s great people working there.” BOB BROZMAN (American guitar whiz)
“There´s a great music audience in Cairns and it’s fantastic to have such a unique venue for them to be able to come and here people play. The Tanks has such a cool vibe.” JEFF LANG (Australian slide maestro)
“Everyone I know who has played the Tanks raves about the venue — we’re really looking forward to playing there.” JULIAN WILSON (Australian saxophonist)
“I love the venue, it´s very cool.” BEN WINKELMAN (Australian jazz pianist)
“It was very steamy, but we loved the venue … It’s original and different.” JOONA TOIVANEN (Finnish jazz pianist)
“Everyone who plays here is in awe of the place. It’s certainly my favourite venue.” TONY HILLIER (nationally published music writer)
"The Tanks is Australia´s and FNQ´s unique and magical space for jazz or any musical performance. Its sheer dimensions, height and shape give it a theatrical but also circus-like - and I submit church-like - vibe, enhanced by the cabaret setting and candle-lit posts. On entry the artists become mesmerized with this space and its natural acoustics, and with all of the 12 groups of high calibre musicians I brought to the Tanks in recent years, it makes them give their best performance of the tour … every time.."
- Henk van Leeuwen - Australia Northern Europe Liaisons