Sydney Festival

Every year since 1977 Sydney has scheduled three weeks of cultural shows – plays, concerts, dance, and visual arts – to attract people to the city during the holiday month of January. Those shows are known as the Sydney Festival, and the 2010 Sydney Festival will be my first.

I’ve picked up tickets to a few events already. There are also many free shows on Saturdays, including today’s massive free Festival First Night.

In just two years Festival First Night has become a Sydney tradition! In 2010, the story continues with visionary director Nigel Jamieson creating an epic theatre of music, spectacle and surprise in our city centre.

Hyde Park is transformed into a spice garden, a feast of sumptuous delights. In the afternoon, families can learn to juggle, dance or hula, watch daredevil performances at the outdoor circus or sit back and enjoy family-friendly music from Kasey Chambers, Poppa Bill and The Little Hillbillies. As dusk falls, a magical world comes alive in the park’s avenue of trees and 43 Rajasthani musicians take the stage for a preview of the lush visual and musical celebration, The Manganiyar Seduction.

The Qantas Domain Concert opens with an inspirational message of hope and understanding from Indigenous supergroup The Black Arm Band. Their show Hidden Republic features a line-up of 25 songwriters and musicians including Jimmy Little, Archie Roach, Ruby Hunter and Dan Sultan, accompanied by a full orchestra. Then legendary soul and gospel singer Al Green takes the stage in his first ever Australian performance. Green made the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with hits like ‘Let’s Stay Together’ and ‘Take Me to the River’ and is sure to be spreading the L-O-V-E.

Down in Martin Place Big Bad Voodoo Daddy head a line-up to get you swinging, while at Chifley Square Uber Lingua’s global urban sounds play across a cluster of stages.

Performances big and small will transform the city landscape into a remarkable summer playground – look up, look around and look out for the unexpected!

Look forward to more blog posts about the festival. I’m quite excited about it.


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