The annual Sydney Festival is on again showcasing top-notch quality art and big ideas.
From 9 to 26 January 2014, approximately 370 performances and about 100 events will fill various venues featuring more than 700 artists. Boasting a diverse program, the Sydney Festival has something here for everyone whether you're a passionate muso, a father with 3 little kids, dance devotees, or art addicts. Just search for it on their website and you're bound to find it.
Among all the fantastic things on offer this year, is the Festival's free program. So if you're on a budget and are looking for school holiday activities, then you've come to the right place. The following pages show my top picks of the freebie festivities for the youngsters.
Appearing in the Festival Village will be a super fancy cardboard battalion brought to you by Boxwars. Come and join in the hands-on workshop and spruce up your very own reclaimed cardboard hat. Suitable for kids of all ages, this fantastic workshop encourages them to let their imagination run wild.
Workshops run every day (except Monday) from Sunday 12 to Friday 17 January. No bookings are required and you can join in any time between 10am and 2pm.
Are you ready to make that fashion statement?
Just a bus or train trip away, is FUNPARK showcasing bold, experimental performance art. Located at the defunct Bidwill Shopping Plaza, this urban space has been given an artistic and creative makeover by some of the most audacious performance makers who have also collaborated with the local communities.
Combining dream worlds with contemporary experiences, you may discover an interactive arcade cinema, encounter a local looking for a chat over tea, come across a political rock opera or even find yourself in a random hula-hooping jam.
This awesome fun is available for one Festival weekend only - Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 January 2014 from 6pm. Registration is required to attend this event as capacity is limited.
A cool summer evening with music, street theatre, scrumptious food and street parade. Gather your whole family and take advantage of some of the best acts in the Parramatta CBD at Parra Opening Party on Friday 10 January from 6pm to 11pm.
Witness the one and only street parade from Boxwars down Church Street with 30 locals dressed up in some fearsome Mad Max inspired cardboard armour. Don't forget to cheer as gangs battle it out cardboard style at the heart of this mad opening party.
Pop by The Lennox and check out Parra's newest music club. Just make sure you have your dancing shoes on for DJ Tom Loud's cool tunes. Back on the streets, you can relax and enjoy soul pieces from Bella Kalolo as well as the blues-infused folk music by Ben Caplan and The Casual Smokers. What's more, head to Prince Alfred Park as the sun goes down for some fabulous performances by Lee Fields & The Expressions with their soul/funk music guaranteed to have you partying till late.
Oh yes, the Duck is back, back for a quacking 10 days in 2014.
The five-story high, yellow Rubber Duck is back again in 2014, but this time, making a splash in Parramatta River. Don't miss this celebrity sighting all day every day between Friday 10 to Sunday 19 January 2014.
Imagine a giant, life size bouncy castle, Stonehenge style.
Off with your shoes and have a bounce at this inflatable monument called Sacrilege. Making its Australian premiere at Hyde Park North, Scrilege gives everyone an opportunity to play with the past and enjoy this cheeky rendition of Stonehenge.
Bounce-off season commences from Thursday 9 January and ends on Tuesday 26 January. Open every day (except Mondays) from 9am to 9pm.
Symphony in The Domain
Pack some delicious picnic goodies and a blanket to Symphony in The Domain located at Royal Botanic Garden on Sunday 26 January from 8pm and enjoy a night of incredible music under the stars. On the program for 2014, are Gustav Holst's The Planets combined with readings by Bell Shakespeare's John Bell and culminates with the best fireworks showcase.
I'm not sure there's anything else that can top this for a Sunday evening.