The best theatre in Sydney
Here's what Time Out Sydney reviewers are loving right now.
The best musical theatre in Sydney
Sydney loves a triple threat; here's our edit of the shows setting our stages alight right now.
The best opera in Sydney
From blockbuster, populist shows in stunning surrounds, to small and independent productions – an operatic experience is within your grasp.
Cheap theatre tickets in Sydney
A dose of culture doesn't have to bust your budget when you know the hacks and tricks to accessing cheap theatre ticket deals around Sydney.
Upcoming Sydney theatre productions
Sydney Fringe is turning Parramatta Rd into a cultural precinct
In 2016 the Sydney Fringe is pushing back against lock-out laws, with a "call to party" – and a plan to create a new pop-up cultural precinct called 'Off Broadway'.
Helpmann Award nominees to see in July
One interstate shows that has yet to arrive in Sydney, and one 5-star musical that's getting an encore season.
Fawlty Towers Live
Original Python John Cleese is bringing one of his most beloved works, the 1980s TV sitcom Fawlty Towers, to the stage – 41 years after it premiered on the BBC. Written by and co-starring Cleese and his then-wife actress Connie Booth, the series pitched its tent in the world's worst hotel, run by the world's rudest hotelier and his incompetent staff. Cleese's character Basil Fawlty and his establishment were inspired by a hotel that Monty Python's members stayed in while filming in the British riviera town of Torquay during the early 1970s. It's not so strange that Cleese would bring Fawlty Towers to stage – in fact popular improv-style dinner-theatre versions of it already exist around the world. But it is perhaps unusual that he's chosen to premiere the show in Sydney. The production, which is currently being cast by Cleese, is produced by Michael Coppel, Phil McIntyre and Louise Withers, and will spearhead a national tour through Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth and Brisbane. Tickets for Fawlty Towers Live go on sale Feb 19 from 9am.
A guide to Sydney's theatre scene
What's on at...
Sydney Opera House
This Australian icon sits on Bennelong Point and is Sydney’s premiere venue for classical and contemporary music, opera, theatre and dance. As peaceful as it looks now, the House had a controversial beginning: while it was designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon, by the time the building was completed in 1973 its architect had been fired. Many have pondered the building’s design over the years, comparing it variously to shells, waves and even a family of swans. Utzon never revealed his vision, only that it involved spheres. The Opera House offers different tours that allow you to get intimate with the building, including some hosted in different languages and full ‘experience' packages. If you don't feel like shelling out, it's still free to sit on the steps for a quick lunch and walk by the water and gaze in marvel at those 1,056,000 pearly, self-cleaning Swedish tiles. Where to eat and drink near Sydney Opera House For the ultimate Opera House dining experience, book a pre-theatre dinner at Bennelong, or just pop in for a drink and a snack at the raw and cultured bar. Check out the Opera Kitchen, a harbourfront dining area that features a host of Sydney food identities including John Susman. Meander around to Bulletin Place for cocktails. Later in the evening kick the glamour up a notch at Hemmesphere and enjoy matched cigars and more cocktails into the morning. Backstage tour With access into areas normally reserved for stars and their minders, this tour will have y
Sydney Theatre Company
It’s Andrew’s final season, so one might expect him to throw caution to the winds and get some wish-list i tems out of the way. Overall it’s a rather demure season as far as Big Names, with the exception of Rose Byrne, who will be fronting Andrew’s production of David Mamet’sSpeed-the-Plow. But there’s plenty of top shelf local thesp talent – like Robyn Nevin, Sarah Peirse and Helen Thomson; and there are actors made popular on screen returning to the STC stage – including Lisa McCune, Ryan Corr, John Howard and Lachy Hulme. But there's no William Hurt, Phillip Seymour Hoffman or Steven Soderbergh. And we’ll miss Hugo, Rox and Cate. The big international star of the season is British director Rupert Goold (Enron, Macbeth), now artistic director of London’s Almeida Theatre. He’ll be bringing his hit West End production of Mike Bartlett’s King Charles III to Sydney. Also heading down under from the UK are 1927, with their take on the Golem myth. For an Australian classic, we get Louis Nowra’s Golden Age; for new work, there are premieres by Sue Smith (Kryptonite), Angela Betzien (The Dark Room), and a portmanteau of new works by emerging playwrights Melissa Bubnic, Michele Lee, Nakkiah Lui and Debra Thomas – with a fifth from veteran Hannie Rayson. The Secret River, arguably Cate and Andrew’s greatest programming achievement in their tenure, returns. For new international work: besides King Charles III from the UK, Upton is bringing Pulitzer Prize winner Disgraced, from the
Each year this western Sydney cultural hub hosts an exciting programme of theatre, dance, opera, circus, musicals and solo shows. The theatre is also a NT Live screening venue, so throughout the year you can catch London's National Theatre productions screened live in HD. Visit the Riverside Theatres website for the full 2014 program.
Worth visiting for the space alone, Carriageworks is the latest incarnation of the Eveleigh Rail Yards. Built in the 1880s, its cavernous interiors are faithfully preserved, giving it a limitlessness very different from the plush cocoons of most theatres. With a program of large-scale theatre, dance and installation works, and as a host of the experimental and cross-disciplinary theatre company Performance Space, Sydney Chamber Opera and Moogahlin Performing Arts, Carriageworks is gaining a reputation as the venue for the most progressive Sydney drama, dance and art.
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A Long Lunch with Moo Brew and Moorilla Wines
The Sackville Hotel is hosting a long winter lunch matched with the taste of Tassie, care of three craft brews from Moo Brew and three wines from Moorilla Wines. The lunch is priced at $60 a head, and includes roasted beets with baby watercress and feta as a starter, followed by salt and pepper bugs with kimchi cucumbers and wasabi mayo. Your main will star a grass-fed beef tenderloin with seasonal vegetable sides and for dessert a chocolate fudge brownie should take care of any lingering sugar cravings. This lunchtime bounty will be accompanied by a pilsner, hefeweizen and dark ale from Moo Brew, alongside a sparkling riesling, sauvignon blanc and a pinot noir from Moorilla. This is the sort of event it pays to arrive hungry for, and with four courses and matched beverages included in the ticket price, it's also great value for an indulgent afternoon.
Laugh Your Pants Off at The Star Event Centre
Bears hibernate in winter but Sydneysiders would be mad to do the same. Especially when there’s a cracking night of some of Australia’s funniest and most famous comedians on at The Star Event Centre – part of The Star's campaign to brighten up the cold season in Sydney. Laugh Your Pants Off is two hours of guaranteed hilarity that will star Akmal Saleh (recently of I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out Here); Merrick Watts (legend of radio, TV and the comedy stage); Tom Gleeson (always a hoot on The Weekly with Charlie Pickering); and the acerbic Nazeem Hussain (Legally Brown). They’ll be joined by the inimitable Bev Killick (who brought the house down at Time Out’s recent Melbourne Pub Awards); dry charmer Katie Burch (National Raw Comedy runner-up); Dave Eastgate (A Moody Christmas); and veteran laughmeister Steve Allison. As an added incentive all ticket holders are entitled to a 15 per cent discount at Harvest Buffet, the all-you-can eat buffet at The Star featuring top seafood, roasts, soups, Italian, Indian and Chinese food as well as a tempting range of desserts and cheeses. Because hey, no one likes to laugh it up on an empty stomach. The Star Event Centre is up on Level 3 of The Star at 80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont. Find out more about The Star’s winter attractions.
Max Brenner High Tea at the InterContinental Sydney Double Bay
Here’s one way to ease the pain of another whole month of winter in Sydney. Stillery Cocktail Bar at the InterContinental Sydney Double Bay is hosting a chocolate high tea created by the Max Brenner chocolatiers. You’re welcome. The Max Brenner Signature High Tea is a three-tiered stand of unique creations including a chocolate caramel cheesecake, choc chip scone, éclair, white and milk duo mousse, fudge cookie and chocolate lick dip. Costing $59 per person, the high tea comes with a pot of warm, pure melted chocolate, fruit, whipped cream and tea or coffee. For an additional $10 you can add on some savouries too, and Champagne paring is $20. If you have littlies in tow they can have the kids’ high tea, which is $27 for a fudge cookie, chocolate caramel cheesecake, lime coconut marshmallow and chocolate lick dip with strawberries. It’s the perfect winter treat to enjoy next to the fireplace and it’s available every weekend in August. Be sure to reserve in advance, chocoholics. You’re not going to want to miss this one.
The Game Changers
Meet the Game Changers — the Australian entrepreneurs who are making waves in their respective industries. From the world of fine dining to skate and surf publishing, these men have carved out fascinating careers for themselves. They’re doing things on their own terms, in their own way, in their own time.