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September events in Sydney

We're here to help your social life blossom in the first month of spring

People at an Antidote workshop in 2018
Photograph: Prudence Upton
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Throw off your doonas and discard your scarves: spring has arrived. September heralds all kinds of exciting events, from major arts festivals like Sydney Fringe to some of the city’s favourite fun runs. It’s also prime time to explore Sydney’s best parks and seaside spots like Manly and Cronulla before the summer tourist horde descends.

Start spring by seeking out exciting dishes from the best Filipino restaurants in Sydney or find refreshment as the days warm up with these very cool frozen desserts.

And don't forget, it’s Father’s Day on Sunday, September 1 and school holidays from September 28. 

RECOMMENDED: The most beautiful bathrooms in Sydney.

September's biggest events

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Aerial view of Pirrama Park in Pyrmont
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Pyrmont Festival

icon-location-pin Pirrama Park Playground, Pyrmont
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It’s free to enter this popular harbourside festival, which is now in its ninth year. Sample a few cool-climate vintages, mingle with winemakers, listen to live music and explore more than 100 stalls of regional produce at Pirrama Park. 

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Sydney Fringe 2019 supplied
Photograph: Cynthia Sciberras
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Sydney Fringe

icon-location-pin Around Sydney, Sydney
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Sydney's Fringe might not be as old or well-funded as Melbourne's, but it's spreading its footprint much further for its tenth anniversary. While the festival has its traditional hubs of music, theatre, art and performance across the Inner West, it's also taking over the CBD this time around.

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at Oz Comic Con
Things to do

Oz Comic-Con

icon-location-pin Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park
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Showcasing the latest video games, anime, sci-fi and fantasy stories, the weekend will be a pop-culture hub where attendees can get creative with cosplay and browse exclusive merchandise. Meet stars like the leading lady of the Marvel Cinematic Universe Hayley Atwell, and Rick and Morty contributor Dean Rankine.

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Love/Hate Actually Sydney Fringe 2019 supplied
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre

Love/Hate Actually

icon-location-pin Old 505 Theatre, Newtown
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Brisbane performers and real-life friends Natalie Bochenski and Amy Currie aren't afraid to ask the tough questions. Namely: is Love Actually a perfect rom-com or does it suck, actually? Amy will advocate for the Christmassy flick while Natalie dismisses the movie as an outdated and awkwardly constructed piece of fluff.

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Bike riders and their bikes at the silent disco stage at the Sydney Rides festival.
Photograph: Katherine Griffiths
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Light the City

icon-location-pin Mrs Macquaries Point, Sydney
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Hop on your bike and explore Mrs Macquarie’s Point at this free, family-friendly bike ride. Riders are encouraged to get glowed-up and enjoy sunset harbour views around the point, the disco dancefloor and glowing art installations.

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Annabel Crabb press image
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Talks and discussions

Annabel Crabb: Politics, Work and Gender

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Why is it that we know so much about NZ’s prime minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner Clarke Gayford’s parenting decisions, but we know so little about Scott Morrison’s? Annabel Crabb is deploying her astute political observation to the ongoing inequality around the social expectations of fatherhood.

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Things to do, Fairs and festivals

St Ives Medieval Faire

icon-location-pin St Ives Showground, St Ives
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If you think you know more about swordplay than John Snow or if your skills with a lance are far superior than William Thatcher’s, head to St Ives Medieval Faire. The ye olde celebration goes back into the Dark Ages and the bloody centuries that followed for a weekend of jousting, feasting and medieval merriment. 

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Fringe Ignite Sydney Fringe 2019 supplied
Photograph: David Li
Music, Rock and indie

Fringe Ignite

icon-location-pin Around Newtown, Newtown
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Sydney Fringe likes to open with a bit of a bang: a free musician-curated street festival called 'Fringe Ignite'. It's heading back to Newtown, where Fringe was born ten years ago, and joining King Street Crawl to pack every available space on King Street with live music.

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Press shot of musician Troye Sivan
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Pop

Troye Sivan

icon-location-pin Hordern Pavilion, Moore Park
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Literal angel Troye Sivan is coming to Sydney this month. It will be the first time Sivan has toured on home soil since 2016 and fans will no doubt be frothing to hear hits like ‘My My My!’, ‘Dance to This’ and ‘Bloom’ at the musician’s high-energy show.

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Soft Centre artist playing a synthesiser
Photograph: Jordan Munns
Music

Soft Centre

icon-location-pin Casula Powerhouse, Casula
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A music and arts festival unlike any other in Sydney, Soft Centre whirrs, flashes and throbs through the cement-bound hallows of the Casula Powerhouse. This year the festival is curated by the hot shots behind Dark Mofo's insanely popular Dark Mass, so you know you are in good hands. 

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Celeste Barber looking to camera wearing an off-the-shoulder top
Photograph: Supplied
Comedy, Stand Up

Celeste Barber

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Central Coast comedian Celeste Barber is known for her self-deprecating and rib-snortingly funny Instagram influencer parodies. It’s the Challenge Accepted series that Barber has morphed into a stand-up comedy show, which she’s touring around the world – and now bringing home to Sydney.

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Titus Andronicus Bell Shakespeare 2019 supplied
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre

Titus Andronicus

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Packed full of corruption, rape, cannibalism, mutilation and murder, Titus Andronicus is generally considered to be Shakespeare’s most violent play and tells the tale of two families locked in a cycle of bloodthirsty vengeance during the Roman Empire.

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Woman stallholder standing behind her textile offerings.
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Markets

Watsons Bay Spring Market

icon-location-pin Robertson Park, Watsons Bay
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Join this fair-weathered outdoor shopping excursion hosted by market masters, the Cambridge Markets. They’re setting up their regular contingent of local, artisanal stalls in Robertson Park on the bay foreshore, offering everything from high-end womenswear to children’s toys, jewellery, art and homewares. 

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People sleeping under a purple cloud at the Big Anxiety.
Photograph: Silversalt
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

The Big Anxiety

icon-location-pin Around Sydney, Sydney
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The Big Anxiety is returning to shine a light on mental health. It’s being organised by UNSW in collaboration with the Black Dog Institute and other mental health awareness organisations and practitioners to bring a series of conferences, workshops, exhibitions, performances and interactive experiences to Sydney.

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Love+ Sydney Fringe 2019 supplied image
Photograph: Carla Rogers
Theatre

Love+

icon-location-pin Old 505 Theatre, Newtown
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Is it inevitable that somewhere down the line we'll start to see romantic relationships between humans and robots? Of course, sex robots already exist, but what about something deeper? That's one of the questions that's at the core of this comedy (a one-woman, two-hander) from Irish Theatre Company Malaprop.

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Fireworks over a crowd and stage.
Photograph: Morris McLennan
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

The Hills Shire Orange Blossom Festival

icon-location-pin Castle Hill Showground, Castle Hill
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They’re mixing old-fashioned community fair vibes – think tea cup rides, roller skating, face painting and acrobats – with light shows and after dark fun. There’ll be dancers lit up by LED bulbs, hula hoop performers, fire twirlers, luminescent fairy floss, giant glowing flowers and inflatable mushrooms.

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Speed: The Movie, The Play Sydney Fringe 2019 supplied
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre

Speed: The Movie, The Play

icon-location-pin Around The Rocks, The Rocks
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If this bus drops below 50 miles per hour (about 80km/h) we all die. That's the premise of Speed, the 1994 Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock action thriller. But what happens when you take the show out of the cinema and put it inside (and around) a vintage Volvo for a theatrical adaptation? 

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Heaps Gay RSL Sydney Fringe 2019 supplied
Photograph: Peter Darnley-Stuart
Clubs, Gay clubs

Heaps Gay RSL

icon-location-pin City Tattersalls Club, Sydney
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This year Sydney Fringe is turning its focus to the CBD and making the 120-year-old City Tattersalls Club one of its main hubs. And to help City Tatts feel young again, party people Heaps Gay are taking over the venue for one night of wild debauchery.

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The Sapphires Hit Productions 2019
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre, Drama

The Sapphires

icon-location-pin Riverside Theatres, Parramatta
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Before The Sapphires became a hit film, it was a hugely popular play, telling the story of a group of Yorta Yorta women who travel to Vietnam in 1968 to perform soul classics for the troops. Tony Briggs based the story on the real-life experiences of his mother, and he's returning to direct this new production.

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People having a good time at the Time Out Food Awards 2018
Restaurants

Time Out Food Awards

icon-location-pin Bopp and Tone, Sydney
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Forks at the ready, Sydney: the Time Out Food Awards are returning. Time Out readers will join the stars of the local restaurant industry to celebrate the city’s best restaurants, cafés and chefs.

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Chicago musical Capitol Theatre 2019 supplied
Photograph: Peter Brew-Bevan
Theatre, Musicals

Chicago

icon-location-pin Capitol Theatre, Haymarket
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The musical was only a minor splash when it premiered in 1975, but when it was given a stripped back and sexed up production in 1996, it became a sensation and eventually the longest running Broadway revival of all time. That's the production which Sydney audiences will see.

22
Marathon runners in Sydney on the Bridge
Photograph: Craig Golding
Sport and fitness, Running

Sydney Running Festival

icon-location-pin Bradfield Park, Milsons Point
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The Blackmores Sydney Running Festival has distances to suit all runners – from a family-friendly 3.5k to a leg-wobbling 42.2k. Starting at Milsons Point, the courses offer some of the most scenic routes in Sydney, with each distance crossing the Harbour Bridge. 

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23
The Flaming Lips dressed as characters from the Wizard of Oz
Photograph: George Salisbury
Music, Rock and indie

The Flaming Lips

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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The Lips are bringing their elaborate, technicolour party to the Opera House for two nights in September and October. They’ll be performing their breakthrough album The Soft Bulletin, channelling all their weirdness into their signature wild stage presence – including props, costumes and confetti cannons.

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Michael Mosley smiling in front of some trees.
Photograph: Carsten Windhorst
Things to do, Talks and discussions

Michael Mosley

icon-location-pin State Theatre, Sydney
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British author, scientist and physician Michael Mosley is returning to Sydney to reveal secrets about the human body. In this talk, he will share his insights about living a healthy lifestyle at all ages, and footage from his escapades captured while uncovering his ideas. 

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People at an Antidote workshop in 2018
Photograph: Prudence Upton
Things to do, Talks and discussions

Antidote

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Chris Wylie, Sonic Youth co-founder Kim Gordon, and Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson are all speaking at the next Antidote – a festival of ideas, action and change. This year’s festival will include solo talks, panels and workshops that respond to our world today.

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Matriarch Melbourne Fringe 2018 photo supplied
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre

Matriarch

icon-location-pin Old 505 Theatre, Newtown
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This show brings together award-winning performer Sandy Greenwood's experiences as a fair-skin Indigenous woman with the stories of four generations of Gumbaynggirr women. Using story, dance, music, traditional language and multimedia, Greenwood is exploring the intergenerational impact of the stolen generation.

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People dressed in retro attire and roller skates.
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Games and hobbies

Roller Disco Brunch

icon-location-pin Cruise Bar, The Rocks
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This new party on wheels ticks off just about every Sydney-day-out ideal: harbour views, bottomless booze and a retro theme. They’ll be pumping tracks from the ’80s while you zoom around the arena on the rooftop of Cruise Bar in Circular Quay.

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people ride in carts at Hyde Park for the Cargo Bike Parade.
Photograph: Damian Shaw
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Sydney Rides

icon-location-pin Around Sydney, Sydney
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This bike-riding bonanza will give you that extra push to get back on the pedals this spring, with more than 40 bike-based events happening across the city, including cycling courses and family-friendly food, art and sporting events.

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Bill Bryson smiling.
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Talks and discussions

Bill Bryson: Observations on Life and the Human Body

icon-location-pin International Convention Centre, Darling Harbour
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Full disclaimer: Bill Bryson is not an actual scientist with any kind of professional expertise in human anatomy, but he is an author with a knack for explaining the more complicated things in life with a laugh. Bryson will unravel his investigation into the human body in a live talk with Julia Zemiro. 

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Kate Miller-Heidke infront of red background
Photograph: Supplied
Music, Pop

Kate Miller-Heidke

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Kate Miller-Heidke is absolutely dominating our musical worlds right now, from international competitions to hilarious musical theatre. Now, as part of a one-off special performance during her national tour, Kate Miller-Heidke will be performing ‘Zero Gravity’ at the Sydney Opera House.

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The Ballad of the Apathetic Son and His Narcissistic Mother
Photograph: Niall Walker
Theatre

The Ballad of the Apathetic Son and His Narcissistic Mother

icon-location-pin Old 505 Theatre, Newtown
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When you're a teenage boy, just about the last thing you want to do is make and perform a show with your mum. But that's exactly what Raedie Gaizely-Gardiner did with his mum Lucy when he was just 14, with Australian singer Sia as its core.

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Chorus Old Fitz Theatre 2019 supplied
Photograph: Philip Erbacher
Theatre

Chorus

icon-location-pin Old Fitzroy Theatre, Woolloomooloo
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Aeschylus’ classic Greek tragedy has been transplanted to Sydney and given a distinctly Australian reworking by Ang Collins at the Old Fitz. Agamemnon is a pop star just returned home from a global concert tour to deal with some unfinished business and start her life afresh.

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Person in tree staring at another person on the ground
Photograph: Summit Entertainment
Music, Classical and opera

Twilight in Concert

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Whether you were enamoured with the sexy-scary story of Twilight, or completely despise the 2008 film and subsequent saga, you’ve got to admit a screening at the Opera House with a full symphony orchestra would be quite a sight to see (and hear).

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A suitcase with stickers and pins on it full of cute embroidered purses.
Photograph: Supplied
Shopping, Markets

Artisans Market Glebe

icon-location-pin Dr H J Foley Rest Park, Glebe
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Artisans Market Glebe is all about handmade and local products, sold direct to you by the artist or designer who created them. The quarterly market takes place at Foley Park and there are around 60 stallholders selling jewellery, plants, furniture, fashion and children's toys.

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The Real Thing Sydney Theatre Company 2019
Photograph: Rene Vaile
Theatre, Drama

The Real Thing

icon-location-pin Sydney Opera House, Sydney
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Geraldine Hakewill and Toby Schmitz will star in this Tom Stoppard play about the nature of real love. Of course, being Tom Stoppard, things aren’t entirely what they seem and there’s a play-within-a-play device happening. But it still ranks as one of his most charming and human stories.

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People running on a road for the manly fun run.
Photograph: Supplied
Sport and fitness, Running

Manly Fun Run

icon-location-pin Around Manly, Manly
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The Manly Fun Run is turning ten in 2019, and amblers of all abilities are invited to celebrate the double digits with 2km, 5km and 10km races. They’ve updated the courses this year, which will start and finish at Hotel Steyne.

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A stock image of a bubbling cauldron.
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do

The Wizard’s Cauldron

icon-location-pin The Wanderer, Surry Hills
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While you won’t find the most famed greasy-haired potions masters or boy wizard at this creative drinking experience, you will have a lot of fun if you’re keen on the occult. Channel the powers of your coven idol and brew devilish concoctions in your cauldron.

Seek out wide open spaces

Barangaroo Reserve
Photograph: Anna Kucera
Attractions, Parks and gardens

Where to find the best Sydney parks

Whether you’re in need of place to laze around or a quiet spot away from the city, these Sydney parks have sprawling open spaces, free barbecues and shaded spots to while away an afternoon.

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