Vivid Sydney 2023 Cooks Up Biggest Expansion Ever…Naturally

This is the 1st part in a series on the media launch of Vivid Sydney 2023

Vivid Sydney today launched its 2023 edition, to be held between Friday May 26 and Saturday 17 June, with a theme of Naturally (inspired by mother nature with reflection after the COVID-19 pandemic started) and the biggest expansion of its event since its inaugural edition in 2009 with the addition of a Food pillar.

For $99 an hour at the museum & lookout atop the south-eastern pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, renowned chef, Luke Mangan, will serve a cheese box with Riverina-produced Shiraz (in a small, reusable, sealed cup to protect the pylon) as you take in the spectacular views of Vivid Light around Circular Quay accompanied by disc jockeys’ mixes in Light Up Your Senses At The Pylon. The lookout and museum has never opened during Vivid Light until now. This adults-only Food experience will only operate between Thursday and Sunday each night during Vivid between 5:45pm & 9:45pm and has a very limited capacity of 50 people per hour so book your tickets as soon as possible! But note, the climb to the lookout and museum consists of 200 steps & has no lift.

While over at Barangaroo’s The Cutaway will be Fire Kitchen – a barbie like no other that sees the best of Sydney dining meet the world’s best pit barbequers. Each night, watch them take to the coals while you enjoy the finished exclusive dishes that have the best of what Sydney has to offer added. There are also live demonstrations.

Returning in 2023 is the sell-out test-run of Vivid Food: The Dinner. Held on June 3 at 6:30pm in The Ivy Ballroom, this 4-hour adults-only dinner is hosted by Eddie Perfect, prepared by Ben Greeno & Danielle Alvarez and features musical performances by Montaigne, Julian Belbachir, Eddie Perfect and more! Themed around the concept of ‘rewilding’, The Dinner will feature New South Wales’ seasonal produce along with paired wines. Tickets are on sale until 4:30pm 1 June or until sold out & a minimum of 2 seats have to be purchased with a maximum of a table of 10 with each seat at a table costing about $295.

 Chefs Ben Greeno and Danielle Alvarez
Photograph: Vivid Sydney

Also new is The Residence, where a currently secret iconic Sydney diner along the Light Walk will host an also currently secret world famous chef for 2 weeks. There is also the new but similar Chef Series. The main differences are it is at multiple restaurants & that international chefs are paired with a Sydney chef to create a menu, unique each night of Vivid, that represents themselves & the relationship between their 2 countries.

Also taking over Sydney venues is The House of Naturalia & HERE NOW. Co-curated by drinks journalist and P&V Wine and Liquor Merchants co-founder Mike Bennie and acclaimed farmer and restaurateur Palisa Anderson, the latter is an adults-only 6-hour party beginning at 3pm at Macquarie Place Park, which has masterclasses that mix food & wine with music & art. Tickets cost $57 and include 1 drink token for basement bar, Mary’s Underground. The former is at Barangaroo House and will contain at Rekodo Restaurant & Vinyl Bar, a custom menu (see below) by head chef, Tara Chua, as well as disc jockeys Frank Booker, Jnett & Queen Bee, while at the Smoke Rooftop & House Bar, a custom sustainable cocktail menu will be the star. Reservations required.

The House Of Naturalia: Rekodo Resturant & Vinyl Bar Custom Menu

  • PACIFIC OYSTERS (persimmon vinaigrette) 
  • DUCK SPRING ROLLS (mandarin sweet + sour)
  • PASSIONFRUIT (yuzu mousse + shiso)
Barangaroo House
Photograph: Vivid Sydney

Lastly for 5 hours after 5pm on June 16 will see the return of the Carriageworks Night Market. Curated by Australia’s leading sustainable chef, Matt Stone, the Market will feature food demonstrations. Tickets, costing about $20 go on pre-sale at 9am Wednesday 15 March. If you want to stay at Ace Hotel Sydney and TFE Hotels, use the codewords ‘CCWORKS’ and ‘TH15555894’ respectively to get a 15% room rate discount during Vivid Sydney.

Carriageworks Night Market
Photograph: Vivid Sydney

All Vivid Food events will also contain a mixture of ‘light, music & ideas’ to round out the Vivid Sydney experience and so you do not miss out on the rest of what Vivid has to offer! The 2023 charity partner of Vivid Sydney is World Wildlife Fund.

Vivid Sydney is the original festival of light, art and culture. 2023 is the 13th time it has been staged and so it has naturally evolved over time to ensure that it stays relevant to the creative industries and what that means to people today.

We are truly proud of this year’s program. We have raised the bar on the size and scale of the events and activated new parts of the city. Our line-up features more diverse talent across more industries.

There are world-firsts and festival-firsts, and both free and ticketed events to make the festival accessible to everyone. Audiences should be prepared to be blown away by the calibre of talent and a program that has been inspired by the beauty and diversity of nature.

Vivid Sydney’s 2023 program is a celebration of authenticity, an invitation to connect, and a chance to create. You do not want to miss Vivid Sydney 2023.

Vivid Sydney Director, Gill Minervini

Each year visitors and Sydneysiders immerse themselves in the program and enjoy the incredible activations of the talented creatives who make the festival so special.

Last year Sydney welcomed a record 2.58 million attendees who injected $119 million into the NSW visitor economy across the festival footprint. It is our expectation that, with its exciting new program and more international travellers returning to our shores, Vivid Sydney 2023 will elevate the experience for our visitors and deliver even more visitor expenditure to the NSW economy.

Destination New South Wales Chief Executive Officer, Steve Cox

This is the 1st part in a series on the media launch of Vivid Sydney 2023. Next part will be about the ‘Vivid Ideas’ 2023 program.