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Sydney New Year’s Eve – it’s going to be a cracker

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 01: Fireworks explode over the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House during the midnight display on New Year's Eve on Sydney Harbour on January 1, 2019 in Sydney, Australia.
Written by City Reporter

Sydney New Year’s Eve – it’s going to be a cracker

Sydney will ring out the old and ring in the new with a cracking night of celebrations this New Year’s Eve.

Two displays of fireworks, lights and pyrotechnics, 60 tonnes of equipment, five barges, a spectacular Welcome to Country and a specially created soundtrack will herald in the new year with a bang.

The year’s theme is ‘See Sydney shine’.  Australia’s biggest public event will showcase Sydney as a city of resilience, strengthened in spirit following the economic impact of Covid-19 and the ongoing global battle with the virus.

 

NYE 2021 City of Sydney media announcement: L to R The Smith Family CEO Doug Taylor Lord Mayor Clover Moore Fortunato Foti ABC Director Judith Whelan Blak Douglas CoS Executive Producer Stephen Gilby Asst Commissioner Peter Thurtell

 

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said that Sydney deserved a party, and that the City’s New Year’s Eve spectacle would help support local businesses and the tourism industry as they begin to recover from the impact of the pandemic.

“No one does New Year’s Eve quite like Sydney,” the Lord Mayor said.

“Our city knows how to put on a show that gets the world talking. Following the challenges we’ve faced over the last two years Sydney will once again shine, marking the beginning of what we hope will be a wonderful 2022 – for us, and for the rest of the world.

“As one of the first cities in the world to ring in the new year, we set the benchmark with a spectacle that reflects what our beautiful city is all about, including a very special celebration of the Traditional Custodians of our land.

“Many months of planning goes into producing Sydney New Year’s Eve and we have had to constantly adapt to the ever evolving and changing situation around the pandemic.

“As we embark on the process of reopening Australia to the world, we know there’s no better time to showcase our city as a safe, inclusive and attractive place to visit than on New Year’s Eve.

“Our service, hospitality and tourism industries have really struggled through the pandemic lock-downs, but now they’re making the most of strong, pent-up demand and starting to bounce back.

“This New Year’s Eve come in and make a night of it – book into a restaurant or bar to start your evening, stay overnight at a hotel and support our terrific Sydney businesses, many of whom have really struggled to keep afloat in the last two years. They need all the support we can give them.”

 

Pylon projections and lighting effects

As the countdown to the new year begins, projections will light up the pylons of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Animations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dancers will be silhouetted against the colours of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags.

Complemented with a unique, specially created Indigenous soundtrack that leads up to the 9pm fireworks, the performance pays homage to the beauty and richness of First Nations cultural practices and their ongoing nurturing.


9pm Welcome to Country Fireworks

The welcome will start on the harbour earlier in the evening, with a smoking ceremony on the Tribal Warrior vessel.

The family friendly 9pm fireworks show is curated by First Nations artist Blak Douglas and features pylon projections of dancers, whales and eel totems, a fireworks display, an exclusive soundtrack and a hip-hop performance.

The show will conclude with the age-old Aboriginal custom of presenting a symbolic message stick to the Lord Mayor. The handcrafted rainbow coloured stick is representative of inclusion and change – a proud gesture for the Lord Mayor to accept on behalf of Sydneysiders and visitors.

Midnight fireworks and soundtrack

Celebrating 25 years of creating the world’s biggest New Year’s Eve fireworks displays over Sydney Harbour, the master pyrotechnicians at Foti International Fireworks promise a colourful display of enjoyment and hope for the future.

Featuring bursts of neon, new and enhanced colours like magenta, aqua, lime and violet, and effects like white strobe, colour changing shells, and silver spinning fireworks each designed like whirlwinds, the display aims to evoke energy and optimism through colour.

More fireworks than ever before will be fired off the four sails of the Sydney Opera House in addition to 25,000 shooting effects, 9,000 aerial shells and more than 80,000 pyrotechnic effects.

Fireworks will be launched from 9,000 firing points (cues) across five barges on the harbour between Goat Island and Garden Island.

The Sydney Harbour Bridge will be brought to life with 6,000 fireworks cues across 178 firing locations and colour changing fireworks that will make the arch of the bridge look like it’s ‘dancing with colour’.

“Our goal is always to make each show different, evoking energy and optimism to make the fireworks display a shared experience,” Foti International Fireworks director, Fortunato Foti, said.

“We put more than 3,000 hours into designing, staging and launching the fireworks so we can give people a reason to say ‘that was the best display ever’.

“This year we’re using different sequences on the bridge and various ways of shooting the fireworks that will produce new effects and ensure we’re creating those ‘never seen before’ moments.

“It’s important to remember that more fireworks don’t necessarily make a better display. Knowing the individual effect and colours each firework produces and marrying these in a sequence with a soundtrack is how we create the mood with the music.

“Ultimately what we’re doing is creating a production – a dance – where the fireworks are the performers in the show.

“And for the duration of the show, if everyone is thinking about nothing else but the fireworks, and this evokes a sense of celebration and even emotion and gets our audience looking forward to the year ahead, then we’ve done our job well.”

Aria award winning electronic music duo, The Presets, have created a bespoke soundtrack for the midnight display which will be live-streamed and a synchronised simulcast presented on KIIS 1065.

Charity partner – The Smith Family

The Smith Family is the official charity partner for Sydney New Year’s Eve 2021. The independent children’s charity helps disadvantaged Australian children to get the most out of their education, so they can create better futures for themselves.

“In our centenary year, The Smith Family is delighted to be partnering with the City of Sydney for Sydney’s New Year’s Eve celebrations,” Doug Taylor, CEO of The Smith Family, said.

“As a charity supporting the education of children in need, this partnership is especially timely at such a critical period for the children we support who’ve missed out on so much in-school learning, due to Covid-19. They will need all the support they can get in the year ahead to catch up and keep up with their classmates.

“Thanks to the generosity of the Australian community and our partners like the City of Sydney, we’re helping to create better futures for children in need, using education as the key.”

Safety and ticketing

The City of Sydney is working with the NSW Government and other agencies, including the NSW Police Force, Transport for NSW, Port Authority for NSW, NSW Ambulance and NSW Health, to ensure a safe New Year’s Eve celebration.

Sydney New Year’s Eve vantage points will be open with all CBD locations ticketed. Visit sydneynewyearseve.com/vantage-points for up to date information on where you can view the fireworks.

Tickets are essential for most vantage points. The City of Sydney manages 6 locations around the harbour: Observatory Hill, Beare Park, Bicentennial Park, Giba Park, Pirrama Park, Embarkation Point. Tickets to these vantage points are free and are available via the sydneynewyearseve.com website.

Functions, restaurants and vantage points in the CBD will require a booking, so please make sure you have a ticket or reservation before you come into the city.

Sydneysiders and visitors are encouraged to support local businesses on the night before heading to a vantage point to watch the fireworks.

If you plan to party at home, you can See Sydney shine on TV or online. ABC will broadcast live from Sydney Harbour at 8.30pm. The 9pm and midnight fireworks will be live streamed at sydneynewyearseve.com/live-stream/ and on ABC iview.

You can also listen to the exclusive soundtrack at 9pm and midnight on KIIS 1065.

For full event details visit sydneynewyearseve.com

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