February events in Sydney

Celebrate love, lunar new year and live music this month
Twilight at Taronga
Photograph: Maclay Heroit
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We may see our final summer sunsets in February, but the second month of the year is as steamy as ever. Hit up the city’s swankiest boutique florists on Valentine’s Day to show your favourite person that you care. Or, woo a new beau by shouting them some noods at the spicy Lunar New Year markets and feasts, then spread all the colours of love at Mardi Gras.

Since it’s the month of that lovin’ feeling, we’ve found some alluring bars for first dates, other watering holes to meet similarly inclined singles, and quirky, cheap date ideas that won’t leave your wallet embarrassingly bare.  

RECOMMENDED: Find the best yum cha in Sydney.

February's biggest events

1
Crowd on hill with trees at Laneway Festival
Photograph: Tim Da Rin
Music, Music festivals

Laneway Festival

icon-location-pin Callan Park, Lilyfield
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This year they’re once again utilising the natural amphitheatre and sandstone-rimmed courtyards of Callan Park to host their achingly cool but infectiously catchy performers. This is the festival for you if you like jangly guitars, women to and at the front, unconventional hip hop, and delightful discoveries from all corners of eccentric contemporary pop.

2
Rupaul's Drag Race Werq The World
Gay and lesbian

RuPaul’s Drag Race World Tour

icon-location-pin The Big Top, Milsons Point
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After a huge US tour, RuPaul’s Drag Race stars will be returning to our shores for a huge live show in February. The Werq the World Tour will be hosted by Michelle Visage and will no doubt feature some sickening performances by some of the show’s most popular queens. 

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3
Kylie Kwong at Carriageworks through Nick Cave's artwork
Photograph: Daniel Boud
Things to do, Food and drink

Carriageworks Summer Night Market

icon-location-pin Carriageworks, Eveleigh
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Kylie Kwong is calling on 60 top chefs and producers to create dishes and drinks for the next night markets to bring people together and foster a sense of compassion and community. It's inspired by the themes of Nick Cave’s Until, which is currently showing at Carriageworks.

4
Peter Pan Goes Wrong 2018 tour
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre, Comedy

Peter Pan Goes Wrong

icon-location-pin Sydney Lyric, Darling Harbour
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It’s an ingeniously simple premise: drop an audience into a fourth-wall-breaking performance of a show that falls apart spectacularly from the first scene. In Peter Pan Goes Wrong, expect petty rivalries, aching artistic pretentiousness and Peter and Wendy’s back-stage bonking all ‘accidentally’ exposed like someone caught with their pants down.

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5
Twilight at Taronga
Photograph: Maclay Heroit
Music, Music festivals

Twilight at Taronga

icon-location-pin Taronga Zoo, Mosman
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This concert series ticks off a hefty amount of Sydney in summer ideals – harbour views at dusk, alfresco live music, and a zoo-fringed lawn to sprawl out. Add ’90s Aussie rock legends meets Triple J gold of the diverse line-ups, and you've got yourself a bloody great way to spend a waterfront sunset. 

6
Lauryn Hill singing into microphone
Photograph: CC/Brennan Schnell
Music

Ms Lauryn Hill

icon-location-pin Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney Olympic Park
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She's been in and out of the spotlight since The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and only recently started performing songs from the seminal album live again. Now you get the chance to hear Hill's distinctive voice power through the hits in her Sydney show. 

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7
Cole Classic
Photograph: Salty Dingo
Sport and fitness, Swimming

Sun Run and Cole Classic

icon-location-pin Around Manly, Manly
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This family-friendly weekend of fitness will unharness everyone from their screens and get them running and swimming in the sunshine. There’s multiple courses and distances to conquer on land or over the waves. 

8
Kids pat a glowing pig lantern.
Photograph: Katherine Griffiths
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Lunar Lanterns

icon-location-pin Around The Rocks, The Rocks
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Visitors to Circular Quay during February's Lunar New Year celebrations will see giant animal lanterns representing the creatures of the zodiac dotted around the harbour. Each one has been designed by an Asian-Australian artist and is best seen after dusk when lit up in full, vibrant colour. 

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9
How to Rule the World Sydney Theatre Company 2019
Photograph: Rene Vaile
Theatre, Drama

How to Rule the World

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Three political staffers from different cultural backgrounds want to get into power and effect real change. The only problem is, they don’t look like the type of people that political parties or voters will install in positions of power. Their solution? Find an affable white man and use him as a political puppet.

10
Chinese New Year Night Market
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Markets

Chinese New Year Night Market

icon-location-pin Sydney Fish Market, Pyrmont
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The Sydney Fish Market will keep its doors open late on Friday February 8 for one night only of colour and festive fun to celebrate the Year of the Pig. Dine on the yum cha and Chinese cuisine as well as a treasure trove of fresh oysters, cooked lobsters and crabs, and a seafood barbecue. 

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11
John Butler with guitar
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Folk, country and blues

John Butler Trio and Missy Higgins

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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John Butler will join his long-time collaborators Grant Gerathy and Byron Luiters to bring their reggae, folk and bluesy tones back to the public after a four-year hiatus for the group. They'll be joined by Missy Higgins after the sell-out tour of her most recent album, Solastaglia in May.

12
The Wolves Belvoir 2019
Photograph: John Marmaras
Theatre, Drama

The Wolves

icon-location-pin Belvoir St Theatre, Surry Hills
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This production about a soccer team of teenage girls had its debut at the intimate Old Fitz Theatre in 2018. The play, by Sarah DeLappe, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2017, and this production features Puberty Blues and Black Mirror star Brenna Harding, and is directed by Jessica Arthur.

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13
The Prodigy at Festival Internacional de BenicĂ ssim 2015
Photograph: Creative Commons
Music, Dance and electronic

The Prodigy

icon-location-pin Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney Olympic Park
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No Tourists, the Prodigy’s seventh studio album, released at the back end of 2018, proved that age hasn’t withered the Braintree beatmakers. The group’s last visit to these shores was nixed after the 2016 Soundwave Festival was cancelled due to poor ticket sales, so a jaunt to Sydney is well overdue. 

14
Flavours of Auburn Cooking Classes
Photograph: Flavours of Auburn
Things to do, Classes and workshops

Flavours of Auburn Cooking Classes

icon-location-pin Auburn Centre for the Community, Auburn
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These classes not only allow visitors to experience food from around the globe, but also provide employment and training to newly arrived migrants, refugees and asylum seekers. It’s an informal setting in a commercial kitchen and allows you to chat to your hosts and the trainee teachers about their lives and cultures. 

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15
Lily Allen wearing a red top in press shot
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Pop

Lily Allen

icon-location-pin The Enmore Theatre, Newtown
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Lily Allen’s fourth album No Shame marks the start of a new chapter for Allen, who has recently experienced what she’s calling at midlife crisis at age 32. Four years after her last visit, and a lifetime of sorrow and experience under her belt, Lily Allen is touring Australia.

16
People dressed in colourful exercise costumes in a bar.
Photograph: Supplied
Sport and fitness, Running

The Beer Run

icon-location-pin Around Sydney, Sydney
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If running isn't your favourite activity, you could trick yourself into having a good time with this 5k beer run. Competitors will stop in at five different brew houses, for an infusion of liquid courage after every kilometre. 

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17
People dancing in dragon costume.
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Lunar New Year Festival

icon-location-pin Forest Road, Hurstville
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When you catch sight of pig floats and lion dancers waltzing down Forest Road, you know you’re in the right place for Hurstville’s Lunar New Year Festival. This celebration sees more than 50,000 visitors flock to the centre of this South Sydney suburb for a full day of entertainment and traditional Chinese ceremonies and blessing. 

18
So Pop festival
Photo composite: Mitchell Moore
Music, Pop

So Pop

icon-location-pin Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney Olympic Park
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Ever wanted to hop on the Vengabus with the Vengaboys, ride a rollercoaster with B*Witched and move your body with Eiffel 65? You’ll want to snap up tickets to this new nostalgia-fest. It'll be bringing a host of ‘90s and ‘00s artists to Australia for the first time. 

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19
Eddie Izzard Wunderbar 2018
Photograph: Supplied
Comedy, Stand Up

Eddie Izzard: Wunderbar

icon-location-pin State Theatre, Sydney
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Eddie Izzard's new show has been in development for quite a while now – it started with an improvised show performed in French at La Nouvelle Seine, a floating theatre in Paris, and was then developed through further improvisation in Berlin. 

20
ragon Boat Races, Darling Harbour
Photograph: Damian Shaw
Sport and fitness

Chinese New Year Dragon Boat Races

icon-location-pin Cockle Bay Wharf, Darling Harbour
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As part of the Lunar New Year festival each year, dragon boat races take place on Cockle Bay in Darling Harbour. Thousands of paddlers will battle it out over two days, with more than 100 races running every ten minutes, each carrying 22 rowers, plus a drummer to lead the paddling with a rhythmic beat. 

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21
Press shot for 2019 tour, band laying on the ground, masks on looking at the camera
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Dance and electronic

Haiku Hands

icon-location-pin Oxford Art Factory, Darlinghurst
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Electronic music collective Haiku Hands have announced their debut national tour. The Sydney-based group has gained attention with their extremely boppy anthem ‘It’s Not About You’ and the funky ‘Jupiter’. After a killer set of European shows, they are ready to tour Australia in full force. 

22
Dead Cat Bounce Griffin Theatre 2019
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre, Drama

Dead Cat Bounce

icon-location-pin SBW Stables Theatre - Griffin Theatre Company, Darlinghurst
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Mary Rachel Brown's Dead Cat Bounce tells the story of a woman in a relationship with a man 20 years her senior who has a problem with alcohol. It's a grown-up love story with real baggage. The play will be directed by Mitchell Butel.

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23
Mary Stuart 2019 Sydney Theatre Company
Photograph: Rene Vaile
Theatre, Drama

Mary Stuart

icon-location-pin Roslyn Packer Theatre, Millers Point
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Caroline Brazier and Helen Thomson will be going head-to-head as Mary, Queen of Scots and Queen Elizabeth I, respectively, in this radically reimagined take on Friedrich Schiller’s play about the two rivals. Imara Savage is directing this new adaptation by Kate Mulvany. 

24
Little May band members.
Photograph: Supplied
Music

Little May

icon-location-pin Oxford Art Factory, Darlinghurst
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Following what has already been a busy year for the indie-pop outfit Little May, these Sydney locals are now preparing for their own headline tour. Best known for their haunting harmonies, this East Coast road-trip marks a new era for the duo and high school besties, Liz Drummond and Hannah Field. 

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25
Werther Opera Australia 2018
Photograph: Coral von Zumwalt
Theatre

Werther

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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It’s been a decade since Elijah Moshinsky's sleek, updated production of Massenet’s romantic opera was last seen. If it needed a reason to return it’s this: American tenor Michael Fabiano will be making his role debut in the title role. 

26
Cat Power Moon Pix
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Rock and indie

Cat Power

icon-location-pin The Enmore Theatre, Newtown
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Chan Marshall most recent album, Wanderer, was her first in six year after her previous label rejected the record. Expect folkie tracks, an undercurrent of blues, and emotional rawness, all carried by Marshall’s voice; a beautifully smoky lament that could soften the stoniest of hearts. 

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27
Pool of pink balls at Sugar Republic
Photograph: Delima Shanti
Things to do, Pop-up locations

Sugar Republic

icon-location-pin Myer, Sydney
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Several different sensory rooms will be taking over one of Myer's shopping floors, and we can guarantee they will satisfy every kind of candy lover. The Sugar Republic team are expecting to build on their Melbourne pop-up with a host of new rooms and interactive installations to play with.

28
Band members stare into the distance.
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Pop

The Jungle Giants

icon-location-pin Roundhouse, Kensington
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Ever since ‘Mr Polite’ was released in 2011 the Jungle Giants have had us hooked. Now that their third album Quiet Ferocity has earned a place in Australian hearts and airwaves, they’re becoming increasingly well known for their danceable tracks and comfortable sing-along style.

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29
Chatswood Year of the Pig Festival 2019
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Chatswood Year of the Pig Festival

icon-location-pin Chatswood CBD, Chatswood
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The colourful celebrations will fan out across the suburb with markets, parades, dining events and art exhibitions. Get lost among the dragons and lanterns at the Golden Market in Chatswood Mall from January 29-February 8. 

30
Band on the beach.
Photograph: Dean Chalkley
Music, Dance and electronic

Rudimental

icon-location-pin Hordern Pavilion, Moore Park
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This four-man dance music troupe is coming to Sydney to share the inclusive vibes from their newest album, Toast To Our Differences. It’s been three years in the making, but well worth the time spent recruiting stars across a delightful mash-up of genres like Anne-Marie, Major Lazer, Macklemore and Kevin Garrett.

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31
People painting on canvas and drinking wine.
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Classes and workshops

Cork and Canvas

icon-location-pin Event Cinemas Bondi Junction, Bondi Junction
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This boozy art class includes your artistic tutelage, two hours of bubbles, beer, wine and snacks, as well as some killer views of Sydney Harbour and our city skyline at sundown. The masterpieces you’ll attempt to replicate will change week by week.

32
Musician Damien Rice looking down, to the right
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Rock and indie

Damien Rice

icon-location-pin City Recital Hall, Sydney
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If you like your guitar acoustic and your lyrics nakedly candid, you’re almost definitely a Rice devotee and, while he may not be enjoying the same level of commercial success right now as he did a few years back, he’s lost none of the spellbinding intensity that have made his live performances so renowned.

For the lone wolves

Cactus at Glebe Markets
Photograph: Anna Kucera
Things to do

The best things to do when you're alone in Sydney

There ain’t nothing wrong with a little people watching in one of Sydney’s best parks, or ordering a feast for one at the best restaurants in the city. Carve out some ‘you’ time and explore these exciting, relaxing and delicious solo activities in Sydney.

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