Sydney New Year’s Eve A Sweeping Success

The Sydney Harbour foreshore erupted into a kaleidoscope of colour last night as the City’s biggest-ever fireworks display welcomed in the new year.

More than 1 million people flocked to vantage points across the city to witness 20,000 fireworks launch from the coathanger of the Sydney Harbour Bridge & 800 pyrotechnic effects shoot high above the Sydney Opera House western sails.

For the 1st time ever, the Sydney New Year’s Eve fireworks were live streamed on Facebook, with viewers joining over 1 billion people tuning in on screens across the globe.

Destination New South Wales estimates the event contributes more than AUD$133 million to the city’s economy.

“This year’s spectacular fireworks displays have proven, yet again, that Sydney is the best New Year’s Eve destination in the world” Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, said.

“Our celebrations have allowed us to showcase our fantastic city to the rest of the world, shining a light on our diverse community & sending a message of hope for the year to come”

The 9pm Family Fireworks display enthralled audiences with floral-themed fireworks blossoming across the summer sky before the harbour was doused in glittering violet droplets paying homage to music legend Prince.

The spectacular Midnight Fireworks display honoured David Bowie with a cluster of stars, quarter moons & Saturn-shaped shells inspired by Space Oddity.

Master pyrotechnician, Fortunato Foti, who directed the fireworks for the 19th year running, debuted never-before-seen candy coloured crackers in a tribute to Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory’s Gene Wilder, who also passed away earlier in the year.

The Midnight Fireworks on New Year's Eve on Sydney Harbour on January 1, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. Photograph: City Of Sydney
The Midnight Fireworks on New Year’s Eve on Sydney Harbour on January 1, 2017 in Sydney, Australia.
Photograph: City Of Sydney

A AUD$290,000 event clean-up operation involved 6 teams of around 20 workers, along with 60 trucks, sweepers and compactors & approximately 100 additional temporary bins.

The Lord Mayor thanked City Of Sydney staff who worked through the night to ensure the City streets were sparkling clean this morning.

“As the crowds went home after a fantastic evening of celebrations, a dedicated team of 135 Cleansing & Waste Services staff collected about 60 tonnes of waste to return Sydney’s foreshore to mint condition” the Lord Mayor said.

Cleansing & Waste Services Team Leader, Sam Daddario, was on site with a crew that began a 9-hour shift minutes after the final fireworks erupted from the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

“Our staff get a great sense of achievement from seeing their turf transform into a clean space after the celebrations have finished & everyone has gone home” Mister Daddario, who has worked for the City Of Sydney for almost a decade, said.

“Nearly 3 times the number of cleansing staff required on a normal day are needed for the Sydney New Year’s Eve clean-up. We all love working together to make sure the City looks its best after the biggest night of the year”

All waste collected overnight has been transported to the SUEZ Artarmon facility where around 90% will be recycled.

Media Release: City Of Sydney

Sydney Lights Up To Welcome In The New Year

At the stroke of midnight, one of the largest, most technologically advanced fireworks displays burst over Sydney Harbour.

For 12 mesmerising minutes, the City Of Sydney put on a dazzling New Year’s Eve display.

There were 120,000 fireworks set off from barges around the Harbour, 20,000 fireworks launched from the Sydney Harbour Bridge & 800 pyrotechnic effects exploded above the Sydney Opera House.

The city skyline was painted with colours of lemon, peach, sky blue, violet & lime along with pops of orange & magenta as revellers watched in awe as never-before-seen fireworks effects rang in the New Year.

As the clock struck midnight, the word ‘SYDNEY’ exploded into the sky on the famed ‘coathanger’ arch of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Accompanied by a soundtrack celebrating some of the best music of 2016, a record number of fireworks danced through the sky in time with popular songs including tributes to fallen stars David Bowie & Gene Wilder.

Bowie was honoured with his song Space Oddity, which saw the Harbour transformed into a galaxy of fireworks featuring stars, quarter-moons, Saturn-shaped shells & a sparkling Sydney Harbour Bridge.

A touching tribute to Gene Wilder saw the night sky light up with the colours of the rainbow & the sounds of Pure Imagination, ensuring the Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory star’s memory shone bright over Sydney.

Around the world, millions of people watched the fireworks as they happened with the 1st Facebook live stream of the Sydney New Year’s Eve fireworks across Europe, America & Asia.

Media Release: City Of Sydney

Purple Rains Over Sydney Harbour On New Year’s Eve

Sydney has kicked off its New Year’s Eve celebrations in spectacular style with the harbour sparkling with purple fireworks in a scene inspired by Prince’s Purple Rain.

A 1-minute tribute honoured the legendary artist, who passed away earlier this year. A purple waterfall cascaded from the Sydney Harbour Bridge & an explosion of gold and purple fireworks rained over the Harbour from 4 barges.

It was just part of the stunning 9pm Family Fireworks display which saw an 8-minute extravaganza of colour & light explode over Sydney Harbour.

Australian Broadcasting Corporation Me’s Design Your Own Firework competition winner, 10-year-old Georgia from Western Australia, had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to push the start button that kicked off the 9pm display, which also featured her winning design – a gold glitter umbrella with green tips.

Inspired by the “Aussie spirit” at the Games Of The XXXIst Olympiad: Rio De Janeiro 2016, Georgia’s design lit up the sky to the tune of Justin Timberlake’s Can’t Stop the Feeling!.

Media Release: City Of Sydney

Sydney Puts On Record Breaking New Year’s Eve Display

Sydney’s iconic Harbour Bridge will shine like never before as the City Of Sydney puts on its most dazzling New Year’s Eve (NYE) display.

After 15 months of planning & more than 10,000 hours of work, the final touches have been made on the biggest ever Sydney Harbour Bridge effects.

“Sydney will once again cement its position as the NYE capital of the world with this awe-inspiring event” Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, said.

“We are shooting over 20,000 fireworks off the Sydney Harbour Bridge , an increase of 2,400 from last year & showcasing the world famous coat hanger arch with 175 lights – making 2016 the biggest display ever.

“Sydney NYE showcases some of the very best that Sydney has to offer & directly contributes AUD$133 million to the local economy through local, interstate & overseas visitors”

More than 1,000 accredited personnel & approximately 300 volunteers are working behind the scenes to bring Sydney’s most spectacular NYE display to life.

Sydney NYE Lighting Director, Ziggy Ziegler, said the Harbour Bridge itself is the focal point of this year’s display.

“The Harbour Bridge itself is the lighting feature. We are following the shape of the Bridge with light, taking advantage of the expanse and the shape & using that as part of the show” Mr Ziegler said.

“We are going to see a lot more bright colours – whites, light blues, even greens & more than 150 individual lighting effect patterns”

Red flares fired from the top of the Sydney Opera House & a golden sun blazing on the Harbour Bridge will mark the official opening of Sydney NYE2016 – Welcome To SydNYE celebrations & pay tribute to the world’s oldest living culture.

A kaleidoscope of cultural imagery will be projected onto the Harbour Bridge pylons while a traditional smoking ceremony will be carried out on board 2 boats moving across the Harbour.

Australian fauna & flora from kangaroo paw & golden wattle to Tasmanian devils & emus will be showcased to the world with photos & videos projected on the 89 metre pylons.

Tourism Australia worked with the City Of Sydney, the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust & Destination New South Wales to create the stunning fauna & flora display.

Tourism Australia Chief Marketing Officer, Lisa Ronson, said the visual display will highlight & celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Royal Botanic Gardens.

“We are very proud of this partnership & we are happy that millions around the world will be able to take part in what is undoubtedly one of the best NYE celebrations globally” Miss Ronson said.

The Sydney NYE2016 – Welcome To SydNYE spectacular will be live streamed on sydneynewyearseve.com, the 1-stop shop for planning your night on the harbour, at home or across the globe.

The celebrations will also be broadcast in high definition on Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Television (TV) & ABC iview with the fireworks live streamed on the ABC TV Facebook page.

Sydney NYE2016 – Welcome To SydNYE highlights

  • 6pm & 8pm – Aerial displays above Sydney Harbour featuring flying ace Matt Hall
  • 8:30pm  Sydney Harbour Bridge Pylon Projections commence
  • 8:38pm  Welcome To Country – Always Walking On Aboriginal Country Ceremony
  • 9pm  Family Fireworks
  • 9:15pm  Harbour Of Light Parade
  • Midnight  Fireworks

Media Release: City Of Sydney

Music At The Heart Of Sydney New Year’s Eve Celebrations

Revellers are being encouraged to look up & listen for the full fireworks effects this New Year’s Eve as Sydney sees out 2016 with its biggest fireworks show yet set to a rocking soundtrack.

A soundtrack that includes songs from rock legends Prince & David Bowie, Australian artists Sia and Flume  & international stars Coldplay and Guns N’ Roses will take the fireworks to another level.

Sydneysiders can tune in to 104.1 2DayFM for the exclusive soundtrack at 9pm & Midnight.

“The music has inspired some wonderful firework effects this year & is a tribute to some of the stars we lost in 2016” Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, said.

“We will see designs that will shower from the Sydney Harbour Bridge, rain from barges on the Harbour & explode as a constellation above the city”

“Whether they are enjoying the fireworks at home or watching the spectacular event from a vantage point overlooking the Harbour, people should bring along portable radios or tune in their phones to get the complete light & sound show”

Having spent the past 12 months staring into space & listening to music, Sydney New Year’s Eve soundtrack producer, Alex Gooden, is looking forward to seeing his playlist come to life on December 31.

“It has been a year of imagining what it would be like being on Sydney Harbour on New Year’s Eve watching the fireworks going off around me. As a job, it does not get more fun than that” Mr Gooden said.

“I have spent more than 500 hours listening to Spotify, iTunes Charts, watching YouTube & listening to the radio at different times of the day”

“It is a long process that involves quite a bit of trial & error. It starts with a technical brief from the City Of Sydney & the fireworks director, Fortunato Foti, who supply a fireworks intensity map that peaks at ’11’ for the fireworks climax”

Surry Hills, Sydney - 9th September 2016. Alex Gooden has produced the music soundtrack for the 2016 NYE fireworks displays. (Model release: ER20160914-Bye Sound Track -00388.jpg)

“The brief is very broad because it has to appeal to just about everyone. The music has to be popular and relevant & include as many Australian acts as possible”

“My personal favourites from the fireworks soundtrack are David Bowie’s Space Oddity, Prince’s Purple Rain and Gene Wilder’s Pure Imagination. I can not wait to see how it looks & sounds on the night”

9pm Family Fireworks soundtrack list:

  1. Do You Bleed? – Hans Zimmer & Junkie XL (from the film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice)
  2. Shelter – Porter Robinson & Madeon
  3. 1 Dance Drake
  4. Remind Me (Steve James remix) – Conrad Sewell
  5. Just Like FireP!NK (from the film Alice Through The Looking Glass)
  6. Purple RainPrince & The Revolution (from the film Purple Rain)
  7. Purple Rain (Royal Philharmonic Orchestra cover) – Prince & The Revolution
  8. Can’t Stop The Feeling! – Justin Timberlake (from the film Trolls)
  9. Sorry – Justin Bieber
  10. Youth (Gryffin Remix) [featuring Gryffin] – Troye Sivan
  11. This Is What You Came For (featuring Rihanna) – Calvin Harris
  12. No MoneyGalantis

Midnight Fireworks soundtrack list:

  1. Strip Chase – John Powell & David Buckley (from the film Jason Bourne)
  2. Fall TogetherThe Temper Trap
  3. Cheap ThrillsSia
  4. Fast Car (Jonas Blue cover featuring Dakota) [Radio Edit] – Tracy Chapman.
  5. Roll UpFitz & The Tantrums
  6. Don’t Stop Believin’Journey
  7. Evie – Part 1 : Let Your Hair Hang DownThe Wrights
  8. Space Oddity (1999 remaster) – David Bowie
  9. Never Be Like You (featuring Kai) – Flume
  10. Don’t Let Me Down (featuring Daya) – The Chainsmokers
  11. Stepping Stone (featuring Mark Johns) – Lemaitre
  12. Faded – Alan Walker
  13. Pure Imagination – Gene Wilder (from the film Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory)
  14. Carry Me (Featuring Julia Michaels) – Kygo
  15. Welcome To The Jungle Guns N’ Roses
  16. Breakin’ Outta HellAirbourne
  17. Still Falling For You – Ellie Goulding (from the film Bridget Jones’s Baby)
  18. Hymn For The Weekend (featuring Beyonce) – Coldplay
  19. Fantastical Symphony: An Episode In The Life Of An Artist In 5 Parts – Part 5: Dream Of The Night Of The Sabbath (Claudio Abbado & the Chicago Symphony Orchestra cover) – Hector Berlioz

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) will broadcast live from 8:35pm AEDT. The event will be live streamed at sydneynewyearseve.com, ABC iView the ABC Television Facebook page.

The Midnight Fireworks will be live streamed globally at Australia.com & Sydney.com Facebook pages.

Media Release: City Of Sydney

Safety Top Priority As ‘Operation Talisman’ Begins Ahead Of Sydney New Year’s Eve

New South Wales (NSW) Police have launched a highly-visible & mobile policing operation to ensure the safety & security of the community ahead of Sydney New Year’s Eve.

Operation Talisman will be in place tomorrow (Saturday the 31st of December 2016) as millions of people make their way to New Year’s Eve events in & around Sydney as well as other celebrations across the state.

More than 2000 officers will be deployed on the ground, on the water & in the air, focusing on Sydney Harbour & its multiple foreshore areas.

General Duties Officers from Local Area Commands across Sydney will be assisted by specialist units including Police Transport Command, Public Order & Riot Squad, Operations Support Group, Traffic & Highway Patrol Command, Licensing Police, Mounted Unit, Dog Unit, Marine Area Command & PolAir.

Acting Deputy Commissioner, Frank Mennilli, said police will be prioritising safety & targeting alcohol-related crime and anti-social behaviour to facilitate the safe passage of crowds as they make their way through the Central Business District (CBD).

“We are prepared for significant crowds who are expected to make their way into the CBD & Sydney Harbour foreshore areas this New Year’s Eve” Acting Deputy Commissioner, Frank Mennilli, said.

“Both uniformed & plain clothed police will be out & about across the multiple event areas to ensure the movement of crowds to vantage points are managed safely. Members of the public are urged to obey the directions of police & event staff as they make their way to their chosen viewing area”

“The public are also reminded to celebrate responsibly & look out for one another. If you choose to have a drink, remember alcohol impairs your judgement & can turn anyone into an offender or victim of crime. The key is to know your limits & drink to moderation” Acting Deputy Commissioner, Frank Mennilli, said.

“Sydney has quickly become known as the world’s premier New Year’s Eve destination so let’s make sure it is memorable for all the right reasons”

NSW Police have been working closely with the City Of Sydney, NSW Government agencies, landowners & other stakeholders in the lead up to the 2016 event.

Operation Talisman Commander, Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said extensive assessments have been conducted throughout the year & detailed plans will be implemented to ensure traffic, transport, crowd behaviour & security are expertly managed.

“NSW Police, together with our partner agencies, have worked tirelessly to provide a safe & family-friendly environment for New Year’s Eve in Sydney” Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said.

“We are anticipating large crowds to descend upon Sydney’s foreshore viewing areas for the spectacular fireworks displays at 9pm & Midnight”

“Police & security will be monitoring crowd numbers closely and sites will be closed as soon as they reach capacity & people will be directed away from the area to prevent overcrowding” Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said.

“We have previously seen several sites reach capacity & close early so we are urging people to arrive early, just in case you have to make your way to another viewing location”

“The community are reminded that ‘Bring Your Own Alcohol’ is prohibited at all vantage points & will be strictly enforced. Anyone who would like to drink should choose a licensed vantage point or licensed premises”

Detailed vantage point information, alcohol-free zones & important hints and tips for the evening are available on the Sydney New Year’s Eve website: www.sydneynewyearseve.com.

The website also features important traffic & transport information to assist revellers in planning their trip to& from the city.

“There will be a large number of major road closures in place throughout New Year’s Eve to facilitate crowd movements & the inspiring fireworks displays” Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said.

“In addition, there will be special event clearways & significant changes to traffic conditions in the Sydney CBD, North Sydney, Lower North Shore, Inner West & the Harbour foreshore so public transport is certainly your best bet”

“There are, however, thousands of additional train & bus services available to get people to their New Year’s Eve celebrations & home again” Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said.

“With additional road closures in place this year, pay close attention to signage as your route to & from your chosen vantage point may differ. Event staff & police will be on hand to assist as you make your way home”

“For those who must drive, please exercise patience, be aware of your surroundings & expect major delays particularly at the end of the night when our focus will be on facilitating pedestrian movement”

Detailed public transport information is available on the Sydney New Year’s Eve website. Special event traffic information can also be found at: www.livetraffic.com.

With significant maritime traffic expected on Sydney Harbour, police & maritime authorities will be out in force to ensure operators of recreational & commercial vessels are complying with maritime laws.

“Similar to foreshore areas, the Harbour will be crowded so skippers are reminded to be alert & aware of other boaters at all times” Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said.

“Before heading out on the water, check the vessel is in good working order, ensure all the required safety equipment is on board – most importantly, lifejackets & check special event maritime information”

“And remember, the alcohol limit is 0.05 – just like on land & with officers conducting random breath tests on the water, it is safer not to drink at all” Assistant Commissioner, Mick Fuller, said.

Visit www.rms.nsw.gov.au & follow the links to ‘Maritime’ for details on exclusion zones & movement restriction times.

Media Release: NSW Police Force

Entertainment Legends Inspire Sydney New Year’s Eve Fireworks Odyssey

David Bowie, Prince & Gene Wilder will take centre-stage this New Year’s Eve (NYE), with their songs inspiring never-before-seen fireworks effects over Sydney Harbour.

In a tribute to 3 of the entertainment legends who passed away this year, spectacular new firework designs will shower from the Sydney Harbour Bridge, rain from barges on the harbour & explode in a space odyssey above the city.

“This year, sadly, saw the loss of many music & entertainment legends around the world. Celebrating their music as part of the Sydney NYE2016 – ‘Welcome To SydNYE’ fireworks displays is an opportunity to reflect on the year that has been & celebrate what the future holds” Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, said.

“I am sure we will all be starstruck by the amazing firework effects this NYE”

Among the wonderful displays will be spectacular new designs inspired by 3 artists lost to us in 2016.

“Sydney is especially significant for David Bowie, who called Elizabeth Bay home for a decade from the early 80’s, filming music videos & recording an album here”

“Prince performed in Australia many times & his Sydney Opera House concert was one of his last & I know children and adults everywhere will delight in the colourful Willy Wonka moment during the Midnight Fireworks”

Sydney NYE Fireworks Director, Fortunato Foti, said the Sydney NYE2016 – ‘Welcome To SydNYE’ soundtrack had inspired never-before-seen firework formations this year.

“We are always evolving the effects and coming up with new techniques & this year, we were really excited by the music soundtrack & how we were able to bring it to life visually” Mister Foti said.

“Over the past 20 years we have used hundreds of different shapes and designs & this year, we will be adding to that. It is going to be a real buzz seeing these shine over Sydney for the 1st time”

Each year, the fireworks displays start with the music soundtrack. It is compiled by Sydney NYE Soundtrack Producer, Alex Gooden, & completed by early September to allow for the complex technical & design process.

A crowd of 1 million spectators is expected to gather along the Sydney Harbour foreshore to watch the fireworks spectacular while an estimated global audience of 1 billion will see broadcasts of the fireworks.

For the 1st time, the Sydney NYE fireworks will be live streamed on Facebook, reaching a global audience of more than 10 million Facebook followers.

The City Of Sydney has brought together broadcast partner, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) & peak tourism bodies, Tourism Australia & Destination New South Wales (NSW) to live stream the world’s most famous fireworks show.

“Sydney NYE s one of the biggest annual celebrations in the world. By making the most of digital technology that is available, for the 1st time this year, we can put the Sydney NYE fireworks show in the palm of people’s hands around the world – right as it happens” the Lord Mayor said.

“Our world famous Sydney NYE is one of the world’s biggest NYE celebrations that generates more than AUD$130 million annually for the NSW economy”

“This is an opportunity to further showcase Sydney to the world as we bring the Harbour to life like never before”

Sydney’s world-class events are a major drawcard for overseas visitors with statistics showing half those attending the Sydney NYE2015 – ‘City Of Colour’ had travelled from the United States, China, the United Kingdom, Germany & other parts of Europe.

Well over a million people attended the Sydney NYE celebrations & according to leading research analysts Stollznow, more than 46% travelled from overseas specifically to attend the event.

The Sydney NYE2016 – ‘Welcome To SydNYE’ celebrations include:

6pm – Aerial displays above Sydney Harbour by flying ace Matt Hall

8:30pm – Start of the Sydney Harbour Bridge Pylon Projections

8:38pm – Welcome To Country – ‘Always Walking On Aboriginal Country’ ceremony

9pm – Family Fireworks

9:15pm – Harbour Of Light Parade

Midnight – Main Fireworks Display

Audiences can watch the live stream of the Welcome To Country, the 9pm Familt Fireworks & the Midnight Fireworks on sydneynewyearseve.com, the 1-stop shop for planning your night on the harbour, at home or across the globe.

The Sydney NYE2016 – ‘Welcome To SydNYE’ spectacular will be broadcast in high definition on ABC Television (TV) & ABC iview with the fireworks also streamed live on ABC TV Facebook.

Sydneysiders can tune into 104.1 2DayFM for the exclusive fireworks soundtrack at 9pm & Midnight.

Follow the event on Twitter, Instagram (#SydNYE) & Facebook (@cityofsydney) for up-to-date information.

Media Release: City Of Sydney