The Sydney Festival is one of Sydney’s largest yearly events, and Australia’s leading summer festival. Running from the 9th – 26th January, there’s no excuse to be bored during these weeks. Operas, plays, dance performances, circus shows, choirs, markets, DJ parties, kids events and more are on offer every single day. And the 2014 festival offers a new and particularly exciting attraction this year: the Festival Village at Hyde Park. With free entry, visitors will be treated to live music and food stalls, as well as ‘Sacrilege’ - a life-size inflatable replica of Stonehenge which adults and kids are welcome to bounce around on.
The Sydney Festival 2014 offers a huge program of entertainment and events.
The Festival Village will also be home to the Spiegeltent. This year, the Spiegeltent will be hosting a number of shows which include cabaret-themed circuses, Dresden Dolls performer Amanda Palmer, and swing and jive classes for kids. A number of overseas guests will also be performing there, coming from the USA, Canada, Nigeria and Iceland, and also from the UK.
The Opera House, a favourite venue for events all year round, will be packed with special performances for the festival.
Elsewhere, you’ll find events at the Sydney Opera House, Darling Harbour, the State and Everest Theatres - as well as Sydney Town Hall, and a whole host of other venues. There are performances which fuse Japanese drumming with Indian dance, a party where the DJ takes guests on a journey through the last hundred years of music, and a ‘listening party’ where guests sit back in rocking chairs to listen to a radio play.
The rubber duck which won hearts on its visit to Sydney will be back
Festival in the Domain is another big part of the Sydney Festival, and one that is looked forward to by Sydney residents every year. A series of free outdoor concerts that attract tens of thousands of visitors, with line-ups including Chaka Khan in the Summer Sounds in the Domain event (11th January), and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in conjunction with Bell Shakespeare for the Symphony in the Domain (26th January).
For those who want to attend multiple events, a Journey Planner has been made available.
For those who enjoyed the giant rubber duck’s visit to Sydney, there’s good news: the duck is coming back for Sydney Festival 2014. This time, it will be located at the Parramatta River in Parramatta Park. Other events in Parramatta will include an opening party, a minibus tour of religious architecture, and a number of music acts.
Sydney Town Hall will host a number of music events.
One of the best parts of the Festival is that many of the events are free. Why not head to Sydney Harbour on 26 January to watch ‘Ferrython’ - a race between the Sydney ferries. Or if you have kids, bring them to ‘Box Wars’ - where they can create elaborate costumes and props from cardboard boxes. Or if you just want to dance the night away, Paradiso Lates at the Town Hall will be exactly your thing. Some events do require advance books, and many of them do sell out. In order to avoid disappointment, head to the Sydney Festival website to check it out and make a planner of the events you’d like to attend.
As will the State Theatre.
There really is so much to do at the festival, and it doesn’t matter your age or income. It is a time when the entire city comes alive with art, music and entertainment, and there is no better time to be in Sydney.
Where: All over Sydney
Why: Because there's so much to do, much of which will be once-in-a-lifetime events.
Cost: Many events are free, but some are not. Tickets for those that aren't free range from $20-$200 depending on the event.
When: The festival runs from 9-26 January 2014.
Good for kids: Definitely. Many of the events like Box Wars or Jazzamatazz! are specially created for kids.