Sydney Festival 2024 is officially underway as the city has been transformed into a vibrant epicentre of arts and culture.

24 days, 50 venues and enough variety to offer highlights for every arts and culture fan, Sydney Festival has long been a calendar favourite of experiences for diverse audiences.

Director Olivia Ansell said, “Sydney Festival arrives to deliver a summer of art for Sydneysiders and visitors alike, presenting a program that mirrors our city’s unique spirit and cultural richness.”

The festival’s array of attractions includes the innovative cabaret show Smashed: The Nightcap at Wharf 1 Theatre, live music series at Brett Whiteley Studios, the world premiere of the Warumpi Band story, Big Name, No Blankets, and the inauguration of The Thirsty Mile at Walsh Bay Arts Precinct, Sydney’s new after-hours hub.

The Thirsty Mile features Hi-Vis, a striking installation by British sculptor Michael Shaw, complemented by performances from local DJs and international artists like Judith Hill.

The music lineup is teeming with must-see concerts. The festival’s dedicated Jazz Week at the ACO Neilson is a must-attend for music aficionados, featuring a lineup including the Cuban jazz sensation Harold López-Nussa, and the innovative Norwegian guitarist LILJA.

Brooklyn’s own SUO brings a blend of genres to the stage, and Julie Byrne’s indie-folk melodies promise to captivate audiences. The Thirsty Mile at the Walsh Bay Arts Precinct becomes a nocturnal hotspot with its Late Nights series, where festival-goers can enjoy performances from electronic music mavericks like Trophie. This diverse musical lineup ensures that the Sydney Festival is not just a feast for the eyes, but also a haven for the ears.

Other not-to-miss events include the epic outdoor opera II Tabarro, jazz showcases at the ACO Neilson, performances by the queen of sitar Anoushka Shankar, and a special two-part performance by Courtney Barnett.

At Parramatta’s Riverside Theatres, Kate Miller Heidke’s new smash-hit musical comedy BANANALAND, starring Australian theatre talent-on-the-rise Max McKenna, runs until January 14.

The Seymour Centre will host White Gold, a Cambodian circus show, and A Bucket of Beetles by Indonesia’s Papermoon Puppet Theatre.

The highly anticipated festival addition, Smashed: The Nightcap, will also showcase a line-up of guest performers, including the talents of Drag Race Down Under breakout star Kween Kong, global drag legend Courtney Act, along with other surprise guests.

Concluding with a spectacular performance by South African DJ Mo Laudi, the festival also offers an array of free events, such as the Vigil: The Future feat. Marliya Choir, and digital access through Sydney Festival AT HOME.

This year’s Sydney Festival not only celebrates artistic brilliance but also reflects the vibrant, multifaceted spirit of Sydney.

You can read more about the unmissable event for both locals and visitors, and lock in tickets, at

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