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The 1980 Adelaide Festival was held from Friday, March 7 to Saturday, March 29, led by Artistic Director Christopher Hunt.

Many remember Hunt’s first Adelaide Festival for the Water Tunnel, an inflated plastic tube mounted on the River Torrens near the Adelaide Festival Centre.

Other highlights in Hunt's program included an alarmingly funny evening with Spike Milligan, Futuresight, an exhibition from the New York Museum of Holography, three theatre works from Peter Brook's Centre for International Theatre Creations, The Acting Company of New York, La Claca Theatre Company of Catalonia from Spain, two programs from the Ballet of the Komische Oper from Berlin, the Prague Chamber Ballet and the Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra.