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Things to do in Sydney today

We've found the day's best events and they're ready for your perusal, all in one place – it's your social emergency saviour

Edited by Maya SkidmoreWritten by
Time Out editors

City life and all the fun that comes with it has undergone a bit of a renaissance in Sydney as of late, with the whole city experiencing a wave of life and good times that haven’t been seen on our streets for much of the last two years.

On any given day, there are a whole host of shimmering and fantastic happenings to discover in the Emerald City, each showcasing something fresh and new for you to get up to, go out to, and sink your teeth into. Here is what’s in store today.

Want to get your weekend plans in order, right now? Check out our pick of the best things to do in Sydney this weekend.

The day's best events

  • Art
  • The Rocks

If you find a deep sense of calm and satisfaction when visiting an art gallery, or perhaps if you’re looking to engage with art in a more meaningful way, the Museum of Contemporary Art’s new free mindfulness workshops could be just what you need. Visitors taking part in Art Flow will be led on a 45-minute contemplative experience by MCA artist-educators during which they will reflect on an artwork in the MCA collection, and perhaps themselves, in new ways. These sessions were developed over the last two years through extensive collaboration between the MCA and Melbourne based psychology practice, The Mind Room. “The Museum of Contemporary Art Australia is excited to launch this new program, created in response to these post-Covid times, where connection and wellbeing are more important than ever. Being with art can help reduce stress and be a powerful source of wellbeing,” says Gill Nicol, MCA director of audience engagement. Art Flow is open to everyone over 18 years of age and no prior knowledge is necessary to participate. It will take place every Thursday and Saturday at 10.15am and 12.15pm from June 30. Each week, the artwork will change with four different Guided Experiences focusing on Australian artists. Each intimate session has an allocation of just ten people per group. Participation is free, however registrations are required. To find out more about each session or to register for a spot click here. Want more? Check out the best exhibitions in Sydney this month.

  • Art
  • Galleries
  • Camperdown

Now is your chance to check out the late modernist art collection that formed the basis of Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art. Light and Darkness at the Chau Chak Wing Museum – the dynamic museum of art, science, history and ancient cultures at the University of Sydney – surveys art from the 1960s to the 1980s. It features internationally renowned artists from the era such as Bridget Riley, Roy Lichtenstein and Colin McCahon, Michelangelo Pistoletto and Robert Rauschenberg. The free exhibition draws on the University’s Power Collection, established in 1967 after J W Power bequeathed his fortune to the University to bring Australians “in more direct contact with the latest art developments in other countries”. Acquisitions ceased in 1989, shortly before the collection was moved off campus to form the basis of the MCA.  Established when most Australian museums and universities were taking a cautious approach to contemporary art, the Power Collection is exceptionally rich. This exploration of the collection is underpinned by the concepts of light and darkness – ‘light’ works were a major theme of the 1960s acquisitions of European-based avant-garde artists, and in the ’80s post-modernists took on the cloak of darkness “to symbolise the endgame of modernism or to question avant-garde originality” according to senior curator Dr Ann Stephen.  Light and Darkness will be exhibited in the museum’s largest space, the 420-square metre Ian Potter Gallery, until September 2022. A compani

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Theatre
  • Comedy
  • Darlinghurst

Far from the macrocosmic cityscape of Singapore, Golden Blood, a two cast play, begins with an awkward encounter between Girl (played by Merlynn Tong, who also wrote the play) and Boy (Charles Wu) in Girl’s apartment. The distorted dynamic parallels an uncomfortable first date filled with tension and formalities, only for us to discover that this is not a date, but a reunion of two estranged siblings. Drawing loosely from Tong’s own life, the story begins after Girl and Boy’s mother dies. Twenty-one-year-old Boy visits Girl, who is seven years his younger, offering to become her guardian. The siblings very quickly interpret the number seven as the Chinese symbol of both good luck and bad luck – a subjective duality that director Tessa Leong deconstructs throughout the show, which also spans seven years of their relationship. The 14-year-old Girl is a wide-eyed teenager, often seen clutching her toy koala, who dreams of becoming a veterinarian in Australia with a feverish reverence. After some convincing, she is excited to sign off for Boy to become her legal guardian. He promises to make them both rich. Girl’s passion and enthusiasm is supplemented with a softness and vulnerability which Tong at times draws out a little too dramatically. Girl appears too juvenile for her age, however what Tong lacks for Girl in her youth she brilliantly compensates for in Girl’s seamless evolution as a sixteen, eighteen and eventually a twenty-one-year-old. The depth of Tong’s Girl is evident

  • Music
  • Music festivals
  • Fairfield

Brookvale’s Inaugural Music, Film and Culture Festival launches this July, and with 11 events over 11 days, between July 2 and 29, you’re sure to find something to tickle your fancy. Featuring everything from a roller disco to a cacao ceremony, drumming circles, burlesque performances and Japanese rope bondage – this eclectic fest is infused with skater punk, opera, Latin beats, organic house, neo-funk, trip-hop ballet, and more. More than just a festival, Groundswell is a movement, largely driven by the self-funded BAD (Brookvale Arts District) initiative – along with the Plant Room, a shared creative and events space in a former factory warehouse – to support the burgeoning live music, arts and culture scene in Brookvale and ensure it continues to flourish. There are plans to grow Groundswell into a major, annual event with both local and international creative talent. The festival also includes presentations from local artists, musicians and filmmakers, a screening of the remastered Australian surf classic A Winter’s Tale, plus a Q&A with the film’s Northern Beaches director Phil Sheppard. Legendary local artist and former frontman of skate-punk/hardcore band the Hellmenn, Ben Brown, has donated three large-scale artworks to hang on the venue’s walls, which will be auctioned at the end of the festival to support BAD. “Brookvale Arts District is one of the most exciting night-time precincts to emerge in Sydney over the past few years, and it’s great to see this major festiv

  • Things to do
  • Sydney

The United States supreme court has overturned Roe v Wade, the landmark 1973 decision which has protected a pregnant person's liberty to choose to have an abortion for almost 50 years. Individual states in the US will now be allowed to ban abortion, and the dissolvement of this protective measure brings with it grave fears for bodily autonomy for women and people with uteruses – not only in the US, but across the world.  Rallies are being organised across Australia this weekend in solidarity with abortion rights protesters in the US, to demand free, safe and legal abortion access and protection. In Sydney, the rally will congregate outside Sydney Town Hall on Saturday, July 2 at 1pm. It is being organised by the National Union of Students and the University of Sydney Women’s Collective and you can find out more on the Facebook event page. While these protests are intended as a show of support for those impacted in the US, the issues at hand also hit close to home. Abortion was only decriminalised in New South Wales in October 2019, and access to abortion was only fully decriminalised in all jurisdictions in Australia in 2021, with South Australia being the last to change its laws. However non-legal barriers remain for abortion access across the country, includuing cost, geography and “residual stigma”. There are fears that what is happening in the States could have an influence here.

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