The Australia Day Council of NSW is launching another big Australia Day program with a strong focus on celebrating and showcasing the rich and diverse culture that makes Australia unique.
The 2016 Australia Day program includes events that celebrate the many cultures that make up Australia including paying tribute to Australia’s traditional landowners and our newest citizens.
Minister for Multiculturalism, John Ajaka, believes Australia Day is about coming together and recognising our fortune as a nation.
“It is a time to reflect on what inspires us and to embrace the common goals that unite us – our commitment to a tolerant, free and democratic nation that allows each of us to succeed while respecting our individual differences,” Mr Ajaka said.
“It is also a time to acknowledge our Indigenous people and the significant contribution of our multicultural communities.”
Proud Australian and leading musical talent, Jessica Mauboy, will extend her role in the Australia Day celebrations not just with her performance at the free Australia Day 2016 – Live at Sydney Opera House event, but throughout the day, taking part in traditional cultural ceremonies.
“Australia Day is all about sharing our cultures and embracing what makes us unique. This year, I’m really proud to be taking part in some traditional ceremonies that pay respect and tribute to my ancestors, including singing the national anthem in Sydney language on top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge while the WugulOra Morning Ceremony takes place at Barangaroo Reserve,” Ms Mauboy said.
Australia Day Council of NSW Chairman, Angelos Frangopoulos, believes Australia Day is an opportunity for communities across Australia to come together, regardless of background, in a spirit of friendship and harmony and celebrate what makes each of us Australian.
“This is the day when we stop and take time to celebrate our passion for our nation and highlight how fortunate we are to live here in this beautiful place,” Mr Frangopoulos said.
“This year’s theme, Australia Day – Everyone, Everywhere, allows us to share your Australia Day celebrations with the world, whether it’s a BBQ with friends and family, a day on Sydney Harbour or even a backyard game.
“This Australia Day, we’re inviting you to upload a photo or post to your social media channels using #AusDay to add your special moments to the global map on australiaday.com.au and see how everyone, everywhere is celebrating.
“We’ll also be adding some fun online with the Aussie Slang Challenge, testing how well you know your Australian lingo. It will be running from 1 January on australiaday.com.au.”
For more information about what’s on Australia Day 2016, go to australiaday.com.au.
AN OVERVIEW OF AUSTRALIA DAY 2016:
With the Australian summer in full swing, Australia Day on 26 January is almost upon us and there will be lots of exciting things happening in and around Sydney Harbour to explore.
As early morning swimmers make splash as the Great Sydney Swim begins at Farm Cove, P&O Cruises will start the day bringing four of the world’s most impressive cruise ships, Pacific Aria, Pacific Eden, Pacific Jewel and Pacific Pearl to join the celebrations on Australia Day
The much loved Ferrython will see Sydney’s beloved First Fleet ferries dressed and decorated to the nines as they make waves in Sydney Harbour before they make their final dash to the finish line under the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
As the Ferrython winds down, take a couple of minutes to warm your vocal chords for the Salute to Australia at midday. Join in with seven choirs around Sydney Harbour and sing the national anthem as our armed forced combine efforts to pay tribute to Australia.
Front and centre of the Salute to Australia will be the Australian Navy’s largest ever flagship, the newly commissioned HMAS Adelaide, along with a 21 Gun Salute and an aerial flyover by RAAF Fast Jets.
Then for a shift in pace, move your attention to the middle of harbour as a graceful set of Svitzer Tugs, East Sail Yachts and helicopter squirrels dance for the popular Tug and Yacht Ballet, set to the music of Leo Delibes’ Pizzicato from the ballet, Sylvia, in an amazing display of nautical manoeuvring to a musical score that will be heard across the inner harbour area.
And for those who prefer to nestle in for the day and have the action come to them, the Cruising Concerts are the perfect solution. Two custom built floating stages will make their way around Sydney Harbour, dropping in to popular locations including Bradfield Park, Blues Point Reserve, Overseas Passenger Terminal, the Sydney Opera House and Barangaroo Reserve from 12:15pm onwards.
Entertaining the crowds on the Cruising Concert stages will be The Enormous Horns, an eight piece all singing and all dancing party band and Junkyard Beats, creating rhythms from around the globe by using everything from plastic buckets, kitchen utensils and angle grinders.
As we move into the afternoon, the Tall Ships Race will see some of Australia’s most majestic boats take to the harbour to compete in a race from Bradleys Head to the Sydney Harbour Bridge, followed by the world’s oldest annually conducted sailing event, the 180th Australia Day Regatta.
Celebrations will then turn to the skies for the Qantas flyover while the Russian Roolettes dazzle with their aerobatic display and the Red Berets demonstrate their marvellous parachute display over Sydney Harbour.
Boaties will show their true Aussie colours as they tour Sydney Harbour for the Australia Day Harbour Parade before flocking to Athol Bay.
The day will end in a bang with P&O Cruises hosting a fireworks display off a barge in the inner harbour.
AROUND SYDNEY HARBOUR
From 7:30am on 26 January, spectators can view the special WugulOra Morning Ceremony at Barangaroo Reserve or the Sydney Harbour Bridge which acknowledges Australia’s traditional custodians.
WugulOra is a Sydney area Aboriginal language word meaning “one mob”, and captures the essence of a ceremony to signify the special place that our Indigenous peoples hold.
The ceremony will include the Aboriginal flag raised with the Australian flag on the Sydney Harbour Bridge in honour of our nation’s first people, along with a performance of the national anthem, in language and in English, by Jessica Mauboy atop the Harbour Bridge.
At 11:45am at Sydney Harbour, more than 500 people, including children from the NSW Public Schools Choir, will participate in an Aboriginal Smoking Ceremony under the guidance of Aboriginal elders.
With smoking ceremony taking place around the harbour, this traditional cleansing ritual acknowledges our ancestors and pays respect to the land and sea of Country, as well embracing the many different cultures that make Australia what it is today.
Head to the Cutaway at Barangaroo Reserve and witness the culmination and demolition of Olivier Grossetete’s month-long cardboard construction the Ephemeral City and then check out Shaun Gladwell’s latest video artwork, Skateboarding v’s Minimalism. Or settle in to listen to the Cruising Concerts as they make their way through to Nawi Cove.
Stop past the Overseas Passenger Terminal to chill-out with your family and take advantage of the action on Sydney Harbour. With entertainment, food and the incredible waterside location, the Overseas Passenger Terminal will allow you to experience the best of Sydney Harbour while paying tribute to our cruising past.
At 11am, the Lord Mayor’s Citizenship Ceremony will take place at the Overseas Passenger Terminal to welcome our newest Australians from 20 different countries. Around the corner at Hickson Road Reserve, KIIS FM on the Harbour will see you get the best views of Sydney Harbour from the giant KIIS 1065 swing, complete with a photo booth, fairy floss and the KIIS street team.
Come and discover Sydney’s most spectacular sunset at Nawi Cove at Barangaroo Reserve and enjoy the Nawi Sunset Sounds performances on Dukes Pier. The three-hour line-up will include some of your favourite young Australian entertainers, with roving theatre performances around the cove.
To mark the end of the day, a special Sunset Ceremony will take place from 8pm at Barangaroo Reserve and say goodbye to grandfather – the Sun – in a traditional Aboriginal Sunset Ceremony.
Darling Harbour will be the spot to be with the best in home-grown music, dance and entertainment. The official NSW Australia Day Ceremony builds to the amazing Australia Day Spectacular, when a breathtaking display of pyrotechnics will light up Cockle Bay, set to a soundtrack specially produced and performed by Sneaky Sound System.
SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE
The iconic Sydney Opera House will once again host some of Australia’s most talented artists on Australia Day, with two free concerts on the forecourt, The Wiggles Australia Day Concert and Australia Day 2016 – Live at Sydney Opera House.
The event is brought to you by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW.
As part of their 25th anniversary celebrations, The Wiggles will mark the milestone with their first concert of the year at The Wiggles Australia Day Concert. Families will be able to participate in the morning’s festivities, singing along with their favourite Wiggles as well as Dorothy the Dinosaur, Wags the Dog, Henry the Octopus and Captain Feathersword.
The evening will see a tribute to Australia, with the Australia Day Creative Director, John Foreman, bringing together a collection of Australia’s brightest performers for Australia Day 2016 – Live at Sydney Opera House, including host Grant Denyer, Jessica Mauboy, Justice Crew, Kate Ceberano, Thirsty Merc, Cyrus, Kerri-Anne Kennerley, Greta Bradman, Roy and H.G. and Bachelor Girl.
Tune in to Australia Day 2016 – Live at Sydney Opera House on Australia Day at 7.30pm AEDT on Tuesday, 26 January 2016, live and exclusive on TEN. * Please note, both concerts are already at 100% capacity and no further tickets are available.
The 27th annual GIO Oz Day 10K Wheelchair Race will see some of the world’s finest wheelchair athletes prepare for the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games, as they race around Alfred Street in the The Rocks in an incredible act of strength and endurance.
Just around the corner, take a stroll through the cobblestone laneways of The Rocks where The Rocks Markets will showcase some of Australia’s best local fashion, jewellery and art. Then saunter up George Street, enjoy the serenity of Sky Gaze, strike up some friendly rivalry at croquet and party on down to Lolo Lovina’s Caravan, where Triple J’s Hottest 100 is counting down.
Once you have explored the stalls, settle in for lunch with mouth-watering flavours from around the world whilst kicking back to listen to some home-grown Australian artists at two outdoor stages in The Rocks.
Or perhaps you’d prefer to head to Hyde Park North and check out Sydney Festival’s Festival Village with delicious treats and funky tunes by Soul of Sydney. Head there on one of Sydney’s Vintage Buses as the green and yellow double decker buses of yester year make their way from the Sydney Opera House to Central Station via Hyde Park, with nine stops including Macquarie Street, College Street, Elizabeth Street and Phillip Street.