Dance, cabaret & ballet

The performing arts scene in Sydney is as dynamic as it is diverse, offering theatre-goers a wide roster of shows ranging from Aboriginal dance and ballet to opera, original choreography and contemporary takes on classics. And yes, the Sydney Opera House sees its fair share of events, but a host of other venues provide the perfect backdrop for all manner of shows.  

Contemporary dance in Sydney

Meanwhile, the Sydney Dance Company is based at waterside studios in Walsh Bay. Innovative and inspirational, the troupe is headed up by artistic director Rafael Bonachela, a bastion when it comes to creating contemporary choreographies. 

Dance performer, DeejayxDancer, Sydney Opera House

DeejayxDancer, Sydney Opera House - Credit: Jordan Munns

Bangarra Dance Theatre is also based in Walsh Bay, and is Australia's leading First Nations performing arts company, acclaimed around the world for its distinctive theatrical voice, powerful choreography, unique soundscapes and design. Founded n 1989, the company’s dance technique draws on more than 65,000 years of culture, embodied in contemporary movement. Bangarra’s dancers are professionally trained, dynamic artists with a proud Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander background.

Bangarra - Image Credit: Daniel Boud

Bangarra Dance Theatre, Barangaroo - Credit: Daniel Boud

Ballet in Sydney

The Australian Ballet puts on a number of productions each year at the Sydney Opera House, and is celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2023. To mark this milestone, a dynamic new vision of the timeless classic Swan Lake is debuting in December, alongside a number of ballets throughout the year, including George Balanchine's Jewels and Frederik Ashton's The Dream / Marguerite and Armand.

Cabaret in Sydney

For those interested in an evening of razzle and dazzle, a number of bars and clubs host cabaret acts among their line-ups. Sydney’s queen of burlesque, Porcelain Alice, makes repeat appearances at The Vanguard in Newtown, and Lazybones Lounge in Marrickville has regular burlesque shows accompanied by a live band.

Vintage fan dance burlesque pin up Eva Devore performs in Sydney's best burlesque dinner show

Bamboozle Room, Darlinghurst - Credit: Etienne Reynaud

In Darlinghurst, The Magician’s Cabaret is an intimate, Paris-inspired venue known for its dinner theatre – settle in for a candle-lit meal with a side of dancing. The Bamboozle Room in Kings Cross opens its cabaret acts to the public on Fridays and Saturdays.

Each year, the Sydney Opera House also hosts a line-up of cabaret shows that are an intoxicating mix of burlesque, cabaret, circus, acrobat and vocalist performances.

L'Hotel performers, Sydney Opera House

L'Hotel performers, Sydney Opera House - Credit: Daniel Boud


Upcoming performances & shows in Sydney