Arts / Culture

Vivid Sydney is on now – these are the events you need to know about

Here's what's on at Vivid Sydney 2024

There are a few times each year when Sydney feels like it really comes alive: Christmas, Mardi Gras, and of course, during the annual Vivid Sydney festival.

Straddling the arts, culture and food, the programming for 2024's Vivid Sydney will be about "spotlighting the essence of humanity" according to organisers, engaging audiences across four pillars: Vivid Light, Vivid Music, Vivid Ideas and Vivid Food. 

US artist Yvette Mattern will be projecting a 40km stretch of rainbow lasers from Sydney Tower, while Tumbalong Nights returns with a free program of music including Budjerah and Mallrat, while fellow musicians like Thelma Plum, Zion Garcia and Jlin will be performing at the Sydney Opera House.

Theatre, installations and engaging discussions will make up the Vivid Ideas component of the festival, while Vivid Food celebrates the diverse culinary landscape of Sydney and NSW, including over 20 top chefs and restaurateurs participating in this year's VividPlace Food Trail.

Below, we round up the key details to know about the Vivid Sydney 2024 program, and the events we really think you should be vying for a ticket for.


When is Vivid Sydney 2024?

Vivid Sydney 2024 will span 23 days, from Friday, 24 May until Monday, 15 June.


Where is Vivid Sydney 2024?

Events and installations will be happening at multiple locations across Sydney, from Circular Quay to The Goods Line. Locations this year also include the Sydney Opera House, The Rocks, State Library of New South Wales, Walsh Bay, Walsh Bay Arts Precinct, Barangaroo, Darling Harbour, University of Technology Sydney, Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, Carriageworks and more.

For more specific information on locations, see individual events details on the Vivid Sydney website.


When and where can I buy tickets?

Many of Vivid Sydney's events and installations are free to the public, but their program also includes a suite of music, arts and cultural events that are ticketed. Ticket prices and sale times vary, but all information and ticket sales can be found on the Vivid Sydney website.


Event highlights we think you should really get tickets for

Devonté Hynes: Selected Classical Works with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra

When: 29 May, 7:30-9pm

What: Dev Hynes (aka Blood Orange) was supposed to present his orchestral works at Vivid Sydney last year, but unfortunately had to cancel his visit last-minute. It looks like the American musician will be making his return to the Sydney Opera House this year to finally perform those symphonies IRL. We'd be quick to jump on this once-in-a-lifetime show.


Sky Ferreira | VIVID Live

When: 2 June, 7:30-9pm

What: We've been dreaming of Sky Ferreira's return to music (and to our shores) for a while now, so it's extremely exciting to see her name on the music lineup this year. This is a very special opportunity to see the electropop singer-songwriter, whose enigma borderlines on myth these days, playing a special show at the Sydney Opera House.


Shifting Perspectives

When: 29 May - 1 June, 6:30-7pm

What: A reality-bending maze, where perceptions are warped by mirrors and light, you'll be transfixed as performers dance and weave around the 24 mirrored plinths. This one is put on by acclaimed spatial artist Matthew Adey (of Dark Mofo’s House of Vnholy) and the celebrated work of Restless Dance Theatre.



When: 14 June, 9-10:30pm

What: An incredible opportunity to immerse yourself in the song and sounds of Arnhem Land’s Ngulmiya. Experience an unforgettable evening of traditional storytelling through traditional storytelling, married with innovative improvisation, chamber and contemporary classical music.


House of Mince presents Pavolvabar Feat. The Illustrious Blacks (Defected / Classic Music Company) + more

When: 26 May, 6:30-12pm

What: It's true what they say "No one throws a party like House of Mince". This dance music collective inspired by the legendary rave scene and iconic clubs like Berghain. This year's House of Mince offering at Vivid will feature the sounds of New York Afro-futurists The Illustrious Blacks.


Lighting of the Sails: Echo by Julia Gutman

When: 24 May – 15 June, 6-11pm

What: The inimitable Sydney textile artist Julia Gutman (last year's Archibald Prize winner and whom I were lucky enough to interview for our Intuition issue last year), will be lighting up the Sydney Opera House sails during this year's Vivid Sydney program. Gutman's work will retell Roman poet Ovid’s myth of Narcissus afresh, animating her patchwork pieces into a reimagined tale of wonder, vulnerability, and strength.


Chorus of Light 

When: 24 May – 15 June, 6-11pm

What: Down in First Fleet Park in The Rocks is the Chorus of Light installation, a partnership with Samsung. Visitors can record a personal message in one of 16 languages which is then live translated using Samsung's Galaxy AI and expressed in the expansife light display. The installation has been cocreated by artist, Susan Kosti, and the recorded messages with later be involved in an original track produced by musician, Ta-ku. No tickets needed, just head over as you explore the rest of of Vivid.

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