Vivid Sydney 2023: Huge festival program released including special light show at Taronga Zoo.
By ANNA USHER
How did we get to this part of the year already?
Vivid is back for 2023 (can you believe it?!) and we’re being promised the biggest show in its 13-year history, with the massive festival of lights heading our way from May 26.
More than 300 activations will thrill Sydneysiders across 23 days, kicking off the Australian winter in the best possible way.
Along with the luminous projections, concerts, open-air raves and late-night parties, organisers say this year we can look forward to several new installations.
One “must see” will take place at the Royal Botanic Gardens from 5.30pm each night, with the area lit up by immersive and large-scale displays scattered along a 2.1-kilometre route, including sparkling trees, luminous walkways and bursts of colour that resemble fireworks.
There’s also a brand-new food section called “Vivid Food”, offering street food; a pitmaster barbecue at Barangaroo, fine-dining experiences; and the epic Vivid Sydney Dinner to be held at the Ivy Ballroom – a special feast by renowned chefs Ben Greeno and Danielle Alvarez.
Vivid Sydney Light Walk’s signature Lighting of the Sails at the Opera House will see the vibrant works of one of Australia’s most famed artists, John Olsen, brought to life as a spectacular tribute to his illustrious artistic career of more than 60 years.
For music lovers, the festival line-up will feature more than 40 Australian and international artists.
“Vivid Sydney is the original festival of light, art and culture,” Festival Director Gill Minervini said.
“We are truly proud of this year’s program. We have raised the bar on the size and scale of the events and activated new parts of the city.
“There are world-firsts and festival-firsts, and both free and ticketed events to make the festival accessible to everyone.”
In our neck of the woods, a brand-new Vivid adventure will transform Taronga Zoo into a spectacle of colour and light, with breathtaking lanterns depicting iconic species like the emu, possum, dingo, platypus and koala.
Executive Director of Taronga Zoo Simon Duffy said: “After a two-year hiatus it was such a pleasure to see the grounds of Taronga once again alive with colour and filled with guests as part of Vivid Sydney 2022.
“For Vivid Sydney 2023, the Wild Lights experience will once more be elevated with the unveiling of a completely-new night trail that will take guests through areas undiscovered including Taronga’s brand-new immersive habitat – Nura Diya Australia.
“We hope that our guests not only leave feeling inspired to see and do more for the planet but that they leave with a deeper connection, understanding and respect of the Country that we are caring for.” Mr Duffy said.
Last year, Sydney welcomed a record 2.58 million attendees who injected $119 million into the NSW visitor economy across the festival footprint.