OUR CITY IN SUMMER!
Every January, Sydney Festival enlivens and transforms Sydney with a bold cultural celebration based on big ideas and cutting-edge art and performance.
The program is kaleidoscopic in its diversity, from jaw-dropping contemporary ballet to epic art installations, international theatre hits, primal circus, immersive virtual reality, modern Indigenous art and theatre, punk protest music and more.
Inclusive programming, a broad range of free events and accessible pricing policies for the ticketed shows means that Sydney Festival is open to all, welcoming Sydneysiders and visitors from wherever they live.
Join us for free music events Symphony Under The Stars in Parramatta Park and Opera in the Domain, or head for Circus City in Prince Alfred Square, Parramatta, for free performances by Legs On The Wall and Sydney Trapeze School.
Throughout January, head down to the Meriton Festival Village in Hyde Park – the epicentre of Sydney Festival – for a drink and a feast, ticketed shows in the Magic Mirrors Spiegeltent, plus free performances and DJs every night.
In 2018, we’re also proud to introduce the Village Sideshow, a fun park filled with wild, wonderful and bizarre attractions. Check out the freaky virtual reality Ghost Train or sing a song on the Karaoke Carousel, plus the Village Pools, Glitterbox, Temple of Din pinball artworks, 10 Minute Dance Parties and more.
More than any other cultural event, Sydney Festival defines Sydney's personality. For over three decades we have presented international artists who guarantee headlines, and whose presence in Sydney adds to the Festival's buzz and prestige. Names like Björk, Brian Wilson, Grace Jones, Manu Chao, Elvis Costello, AR Rahman, Cate Blanchett, Ralph Fiennes, Robert Lepage, The Flaming Lips, Nick Cave, PJ Harvey, Peter Sellars, Sir Ian McKellen and David Byrne & St. Vincent, alongside some of the world's great companies - Wayne McGregor's Random Dance, Cheek by Jowl, Gate Theatre, The Wooster Group and the Schaubühne Berlin to name only a few - share the Festival with the most exciting artists and companies in Australia.
Sydney Festival was originally conceived by the Sydney Committee, the NSW State Government and the City of Sydney with a view to attracting people into the city centre during the holiday month of January.
The first Festival took place in 1977 and it has since grown to become one of Australia's largest annual cultural celebrations with an international reputation for modern, popular and intelligent programming. In many ways it is probably still best understood as a celebration of Sydney and its style and energy reflect the confidence, diversity and vigour of one of the world's most beautiful cities.