Arts / Culture

Sydney is set to host South by Southwest Festival in 2023, dubbed the “Olympics for creatives.”

south by southwest sydney

Sydney is set to host creative "Mega-Festival" South by Southwest (SXSW) in its first occasion outside of North America. SXSW will be held in the New South Wales capital in October 2023 consisting of thousands of music, technology, art and gaming events. 

What is South by Southwest Festival?

Touted as an event for “creative discovery,” the organisers have promised a convergence of innovation with music, screen, tech, culture and  gaming. Taking place at the International Convention Centre in Darling Harbour, it is expected to coast $150 million, which Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres says will be on one of the biggest events in Australia. 

"SXSW Sydney is the biggest event to come to Australia since Vivid," Ayres said in a statement. "SXSW Sydney will provide significant benefits for the NSW visitor economy, with unparalleled networking opportunities to advance our tech and creative industries.

"The very best of the creative and tech industries in the Asia Pacific will be on display during SXSW Sydney, while also drawing thousands of people from around the world to enjoy our spectacular Harbour City."


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Geoff Jones, Event Producer for SXSW Sydney, labelled the event the “Olympics of event for creatives.” 

"The city will come alive with over 1000 experiences including keynote speakers, inspiring panels and summits, live gaming sessions, screenings, product demonstrations, artists performances and countless opportunities to network at parties and dedicated events," he said.” 

SXSW is known for headline music appearances that have previously included Lizzo, Billie Eilish and Dolly Parton, alongside “culture-defining sessions” with Barack Obama and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The festival began in Texas in 1987 and has become a global destination for creatives to connect and collaborate. Expect a swell of creativity and a vibrant atmosphere to engulf the harbourside city when the event commences. 

What is the lineup for South by Southwest Sydney?

A lineup for SXSW Sydney is yet to be announced, with the festival still a while off, slated for October 2023. 

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