Culture & Entertainment Guide
Sydney cinemas screen a range of films; blockbuster, foreign and art house. In addition, there are also many film festivals throughout the year showcasing independent and foreign films, usually themed by global region, language or subculture.
Big budget films are often released at the same time as the rest of the world – a measure to nullify piracy, so there is mostly no delay in seeing blockbusters.
All cinema is reviewed by the Australian Government office for cinema classification and will display a warning, depending in the rating it is given.
- (G) for General viewing
- (M) for a Mature Audience of 15+
- (R) for Restricted viewing (audience of 18+)
The best online resource for finding film session times and cinema locations in Sydney is on the Your Movies website.
Your Movies http://www.yourmovies.com.au
Major Mainstream Cinemas
There are dozens of cinemas in Sydney, and all main ones are serviced by the same two companies. On their websites you can search by location, film and session times and purchase tickets.
Both of these cinema chains now offer premium movie cinemas which are smaller, have very comfortable seats and serve wine and beer.
Art House, Independent and Foreign Cinemas
These cinemas are known for screening independent, art house and foreign films. Non-English speaking films are always subtitled in English.
- Hoyts Cinema , Fox Studios http://www.hoyts.com.au
- Govinda’s Movie Room http://www.govindas.com.au
- Palace Academy http://www.palacecinemas.com.au
- Palace Verona http://www.palacecinemas.com.au
- Hayden Orpheum Picture Palace Cremorne http://www.orpheum.com.au
- Dendy Newtown http://www.dendy.com.au/
DVD’s can be rented from video shops which can be found in most shopping areas. Blockbuster and Video Ezy are the two large chains in Sydney. New releases are $7.50 and often shops will offer deals; two new releases and two weeklies for $15, for example.
Many video shops have a small foreign film section. If you are after obscure or hard to find foreign, cult, art house, old or independent films the best place to go is Dr What in Bondi Junction. It’s a film buff’s heaven. If they don’t have it, chances are no one will.
Opera and Ballet
The Sydney Opera House stages operas and ballets all year round. The Sydney Opera House is quite spectacular. Just walking towards its sails with the Harbour glinting on your left – it feels like the show has already begun. It’s a magical location and venue.
You can watch both national and international operas and ballets at The Sydney Opera House. The performances are world class. Ticket prices vary according to your seat locations but expect to pay around $200. It’s recommended to buy tickets well in advance.
Sydney Opera House http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com
Sydney hosts both big ticket and fringe theatre. There are numerous theatres in Sydney, with the smaller theatres providing a space for emerging talent and new discourses. The most well known large theatre in Sydney is the Sydney Theatre Company in Walsh Bay and its current directors are film and theatre actress Cate Blanchett and her partner Andrew Upton. The Sydney Opera House, The Capital Theatre and The State Theatre also put on many good quality theatre productions.
Small but significant theatres in Sydney include The Belvoir Theatre, The Darlinghurst Theatre and The Fitzroy Theatre.
Theatre ticket prices usually depend on the size of the production. Seats range from $20 for a small co-operative-run theatre performance to $100 or more for a large production at the Sydney Opera House or Sydney Theatre Company. For larger performances it’s best to buy tickets well in advance.
- Sydney Theatre Company http://www.sydneytheatre.com.au
- Sydney Opera House http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com
- The Capital Theatre http://www.capitoltheatre.com.au
- The State Theatre http://www.statetheatre.com.au
- The Belvoir Theatre http://www.belvoir.com.au
- The Darlinghurst Theatre http://www.darlinghursttheatre.com
- The Fitzroy Theatre http://www.rocksurfers.org
To find out about current and upcoming performances the links below are useful.
- City Search http://sydney.citysearch.com.au
- What’s On Guide http://www.whatson.com.au
- Sydney Morning Herald http://www.smh.com.au