Arts and Culture
Sydney is a vibrant city with a rich multicultural heritage that contributes to its diverse culture and exciting arts scene. With an incredible selection of theatres, galleries, public artworks and fantastic annual events, Sydney really is a world class destination for the arts.
An ever changing events calendar includes Vivid Sydney; the largest festival of light, music, and ideas in the Southern Hemisphere in May/June and Sydney Festival in January. In February is the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, one of the largest LGBT festivals in the world.
Sydney Music and Theatre Venues
A range of beautiful venues host concerts, gigs, theatre and dance performances. The UNESCO World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House puts on over 40 shows a week as well as offering backstage tours. Each evening, Badu Gili illuminates the eastern sail – a projection exploring ancient stories of the traditional owners of Bennelong Point, the Cadigal people.
The State Theatre in the CBD is a stunning heritage building with opulent décor fusing eclectic elements of gothic, Italian and art deco design. Since its opening in 1929, the theatre has been an integral part of the social and cultural fabric of Sydney.
The Enmore Theatre in Newtown is Sydney’s longest running live music venue, and has played host to an impressive roster of artists including Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones and The White Stripes.
Head to the Capitol Theatre and the Sydney Lyric for musicals and theatre, including the latest shows from Broadway and the West End. 2020 will bring performances of Waitress at the Sydney Lyric and 9 to 5 at the Capitol Theatre.
Sydney Theatre Company is based in Walsh Bay, a lively cultural precinct and home to the Roslyn Packer Theatre. The historic wharves are currently undergoing renovations, so Sydney Dance Company and Bangarra have relocated until the works are completed.
Sydney Museums and Galleries
Sydney has a fascinating array of museums, showcasing indigenous culture, maritime and colonial history. The Australian Museum is the nation’s oldest museum and is currently undergoing a major renovation, reopening in spring 2020.
From small independent galleries to multi-disciplinary event centres, Sydney is full of amazing art spaces. The Art Gallery of NSW houses one of the largest galleries of Aboriginal art in the country, as well as hosting the annual Archibald, Sir John Sulman and Wynne prizes.
The Museum of Contemporary Art has a wonderful location overlooking Sydney Harbour and showcases the work of living artists. Each spring, Sculpture by the Sea transforms the coastal walk between Bondi and Tamarama into the world’s largest annual free-to-the-public outdoor sculpture exhibition.