Is It A Bird? Is It A Plane? Is It Superman? No, It’s ‘The Other Superman’ At Australia Day LIVE 2023!

Australia Day In Sydney has announced their 2023 program and will see Australia’s Got Talent act The Other Superman doing a world-1st performance spinning high off a crane above Circular Quay in his wheelchair during Australia Day LIVE – the 2-hour finale concert, fireworks, projections & maritime spectacular held at that location.

The Other Superman‘s not-so-secret identity is Paul Nunnari, a silver medallist wheelchair racer at the 2000 Paralympic Summer Games in Sydney and Gunniess World Record holder for the ‘Most 360-degree rope rotations in a wheelchair hanging by one arm in 1 minute (team of two)’, which is 77 rotations!

Paul Nannari racing his wheelchair at the 2nd Paralympic Summer Games: Sydney 2000
Photograph: Aerion Aerial Entertainment Company

Normally, he performs at a minimum height of 6 metres but this time a crane is being used and we have no idea how high the crane is going to be but we assume it is going to be fairly high compared to his usual aerial acrobatics!

He is also a public speaker so there is a chance he may make a small speech at Australia Day LIVE.

Produced by the Australia Day Council of New South Wales (NSW) and the NSW Government and brought to you by Destination NSW and the National Australia Day Council, Australia Day LIVE will be held at Circular Quay & the Sydney Opera House between 7:30pm & 9:30pm AEDT and will be broadcast live on Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Television (TV) & iView. Tickets, which were free, have already sold out on January 11 (same day tickets became available) for the concert at the Sydney Opera House. To attend in person, you will now need to find a vantage point around Circular Quay before it reaches capacity around 6:45pm AEDT. Pre-show entertainment begins at 6:30pm.

Australia Day LIVE will, once again, be creatively directed and hosted by John Foreman, joining co-hosts Casey Donovan, Jeremy Fernandez and new for 2023, co-host, Sirine Demachkie. They will lead you through a night of entertainment acts including:

  • Fireworks & projections on the Sydney Opera House
  • Fireworks from Circular Quay
  • A concert (detailed below)
  • A lit vessel parade
  • Jet-skiers
  • Fly-boarders
  • Koomurri dancers and,
  • Parachutists!

It is important to all of us to begin ‘Australia Day LIVE’ with a moment that looks at the Aboriginal perspective of Australia Day that celebrates artists from all over the country in different locations

Christine Anu is performing ‘My Island Home’, a song that was originally recorded by the ‘Warumpi Band’ in the ‘80s & has an incredible lineage in Indigenous culture, together with symphony orchestras from across the country.

William Barton, ‘Australia Day Live’ Creative Consultant & Performer

The evening concert, with its powerful performances and tributes, adds greater meaning to our national day & celebrates the Australian spirit.

‘Australia Day Live’ will celebrate artists from around each state and territory across the country, with several symphony orchestras collaborating on a mesmerising opening piece.

‘West Australian Symphony Orchestra’, ‘Queensland Symphony Orchestra’ and ‘Aussie Pops Orchestra’ will all come together to perform a stunning live rendition of ‘My Island Home’, sung by Christine Anu & her daughter Zipporah.

‘Australia Day LIVE’ Creative Director, John Foreman OAM 

All this non-musical entertainment will be synchronised to a medley of Australian hits and classics performed live by the following artists in addition to the already mentioned at the televised concert, backed up John Foreman’s Aussie Pops Orchestra:

  • Casey Donovan,
  • Dami Im,
  • Isaiah Firebrace,
  • Anthony Callea,
  • James Morrison,
  • William Barton,
  • Tim Campbell,
  • Darren Percival,
  • Emma Pask,
  • Mirusia and,
  • Emma Kavanagh

Dami Im will perform Hunters & Collectors rock song, Throw Your Arms Around Me, accompanied by the Fijian abattoir workers who volunteered and uplifted Lismore residents who suffered during the 2022 eastern Australian floods between February & April last year.

Before Australia Day LIVE, there is a still a day’s worth of entertainment beginning at 5:20am with Dawn Reflection – a projection on the western sails of the Sydney Opera House of a First Nations artwork. This year the artist is proud Kamilaroi artist, Rhonda Sampson and the artwork, for the 1st time, will remain a secret until 5:20am on the 26th of January!

This is followed at 7:30am with the hour-long WugulOra (‘1 Mob’) Morning Ceremony at Barangaroo Reserve, which will be it’s 20th anniversary! Televised on ABC TV & iView, the ceremony features Indigenous stories, musical & dance performances, speeches from dignitaries and local Indigenous people as well as a smoking ceremony.

2023 will be the 3rd year for the ‘Dawn Reflection’ which is an important part of starting the day where Aboriginal people are represented. It is a moment to reflect on what it means for this new dawn and reflect on what took place every day prior to 1788 and each day since.

It’s also 20 years of the Australia Day morning ceremony – ‘WugulOra’ is respectful in honouring those who have fallen, continue to suffer but is also about moving forward & how as a state and country we can do this with the First Nations.

Yvonne Weldon, Deputy Chair of the Australia Day Council Of NSW & the Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council

After these 2 significant Indigenous events, at 10:30am, in the middle of Sydney Harbour near Fort Denison, 4 Emerald-Class ferries containing community groups, charities & hundreds of displaced Ukrainians who now call Sydney home will race eastward around Shark Island before finishing under the Sydney Harbour Bridge at around 11:20am in the annual Ferrython!

Following that, at 11:30am, will be the newest flagship Sydney Spectacular, the Salute To Australia, which you can read about here.

Between 12:45pm & 2pm, the Harbour Parade, a parade of vessels covered in Australian-themed decorations, will circle Sydney Harbour from either side of the northern Sydney Harbour Bridge pylons to Goat Island, back under the Sydney Harbour Bridge, past Circular Quay, the Sydney Opera House & Fort Denison to Athol Bay near Taronga Zoo.

Between 10:30am & 4pm at the Overseas Passenger Terminal, will be a Mega Kidz Zone containing wheelchair basketball, an inflatable ninja obstacle course and a massive maze! Finishing at 4pm as well but beginning 30 minutes earlier at 10am on the Tallawoladah Lawns of the Museum Of Contemporary Art will be Surf Life Saving NSW with a lifesaver dress-up photo opportunity, educationary entertainment on the great work they do alongside with the Little Nippers to educate everyone about beach safety and other family-friendly activities.

All in all remember to reflect, respect and celebrate this Australia Day In Sydney!