Vivid Sydney Champions Uniqueness and Innovation

Scott Wallace
22nd Mar 2016

Every year, Vivid Sydney brings some of the finest Australian and international music to the Sydney Opera House and other stages around Sydney. Championing uniqueness and innovation, Vivid always offers a chance for Australian audiences to experience the most cutting edge and creative music out there.

After a more rock-focused line-up last year, this year has shifted more toward the electronic music zeitgeist. First announced was ANOHNI, best known as the leader of chamber pop and cabaret group Antony and the Johnsons, but now recording under her new name and with a new sound. Having worked with UK producer Hudson Mohawke and US producer Oneohtrix Point Never, ANOHNI will unleash her bold new sound with her debut HOPELESSNESS, due out May 6. With the singles "4 Degrees" and "Drone Bomb Me," it's shaping up to be one of the best records of the year.

ANOHNI opens the festival with four shows at the Opera House alongside her collaborator Oneohtrix Point Never, who will be performing his enigmatic, impressionistic electronic compositions solo on a separate evening. With work in a similar post-human digital vein, Björk will be taking over Carriageworks with a collaborative virtual reality exhibition called BJÖRK DIGITAL from June 4-18. 

Talented and original Australian acts have also been announced as part of the line-up. Perth-based electronic performer KUČKA will be appearing at The Basement for a very special one-off show with inventive, mind-bending visuals from video artist Rachael Archibald. Iconic Australian record label Future Classic presents two of its freshest artists, with Ta-ku and Wafia appearing together, and Hiatus Kaiyote and Sampa the Great will be bringing their irresistible grooves and flows to the House.

One of the most exciting performances is that of Max Richter's Sleep. The composition, which was first performed last year, is barrier-breaking in its length and design. It's a piece designed specifically for sleep, that will go all night long while attendees stay overnight in beds provided. The price is steep, but this is an incredible opportunity for anyone interested in the ways music effects and changes our day-to-day lives.

Rock and folk music are still well-represented, with Bon Iver performing their special CERCLE shows, providing a three-hundred-and-sixty degree concert experience, New Zealand's Tiny Ruins bringing her intimate and starkly beautiful tunes, and groundbreaking UK group New Order will present a selection covering their whole, hugely varied career over several nights. New Order will also be the subject of free talks with Double J's Myf Warhurst speaking with writer, broadcaster, and cultural critic Paul Morley, and photographer Kevin Cummins

Other highlights include edgy Minneapolis synth-pop group Poliça, cinematic metal heroes Deafheaven, electric jazz and soul from the beguiling Esperanza Spalding, classic jazz from the legendary Wayne Shorter, and many more amazing gigs all around the city at venues including Newtown Social Club, Freda's, and even the Museum of Contemporary Art. Check out the full Vivid music program here.

Tickets go on general sale from 9am Wednesday March 23rd. See the Sydney Scoop calendar for info on the highlights of Vivid 2016.