The City of Sydney’s New Year’s Eve fireworks display is the world’s largest and most technologically advanced New Year’s Eve fireworks display.
It draws larger crowds than Paris (100,000), London (700,000), Berlin (1 million) and New York City (1 million) with about 1.5 million people gathering on the Sydney Harbour foreshore and 2.6 million watching the fireworks on TV.
An estimated 1 billion people around the world see the Sydney New Year’s Eve Midnight Fireworks and Bridge Effect.
Research by Events NSW found that Sydney New Year’s Eve contributes $156 million to the local economy.
Fifteen months of hard work go into designing and preparing Sydney New Year’s Eve each year. In fact, the City of Sydney’s NYE11 team has already started work on 2012 Sydney New Year’s Eve.
The 2011 Sydney New Year’s Eve Creative Director, Marc Newson, has worked with creative agency Imagination Australia, and the City’s team of six full-time Sydney New Year’s Eve staff, including Producer Aneurin Coffey, to make this year’s event the best.
Newson’s Time to Dream theme represents Sydneysiders’ hopes and aspirations and asks them to think about their dreams for 2012.
The Time to Dream logo is a four-colour “endless rainbow” designed by Newson in his signature minimalist style.
The rainbow’s spectrum includes violet to represent community, peace, social stability and connectedness; blue to symbolise the harbour, sky and future aspirations; green for the environment, nurturing and growing; and yellow, which epitomises optimism, happiness and a sunny attitude.
Over 1,000 accredited personnel work on the night of the event to ensure everything runs smoothly, with 300 volunteers also pledging their time and support to help with Sydney New Year’s Eve.
The night begins when the words “Welcome to Sydney” are projected on the pylons of the Sydney Harbour Bridge in 16 languages, including English, Gadigal, Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, French, Hindi, Indonesian, Greek, Italian, Swahili, Korean, Russian, Samoan, Spanish, Thai and Vietnamese, to represent Sydney’s top migrant populations and tourist nationalities.
The fireworks display is carefully designed by Sydney’s Foti International Fireworks, led by Fireworks Director Fortunato Foti, and requires a pyrotechnical crew of 45 people. This is the 12th consecutive year the company has been involved in Sydney New Year’s Eve.
Foti Fireworks is a carbon-neutral company that uses carbon credits, low-environmental-impact fireworks and recycling.
Approximately 11,000 shells, 25,000 shooting comets and 100,000 individual pyrotechnic effects will be used in the display.
- The fireworks weigh 7 tonnes.
- Fourteen shipping containers worth of equipment are needed for both displays – that’s 120 tonnes of gear.
- Twelve computers will digitally launch the fireworks on the Harbour Bridge, barges and buildings, shooting 10,000 cues.
- More than 60 kilometres of wire and cables link the launch computers.
- There are 130 firing points on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
The 9pm Family Fireworks will use four fireworks barges, while the Midnight Fireworks will use seven barges and the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Fireworks will also be launched from the rooftops of seven city buildings including the Four Seasons Hotel, Gold Fields House, Gateway, AMP Centre tower, Chifley Tower, Governor Phillip Tower and AMP Sydney Cove.
The Harbour of Light Parade features 55 illuminated boats, which make a majestic passage within and around the Sydney Harbour Exclusion Zone after the 9pm show, building up Sydneysiders’ excitement before the countdown to midnight.
The 2011 Bridge Effect and lighting display is created by Tony Award-winning designer Brian Thomson, and matches Marc Newson’s Time to Dream theme. The Bridge Effect installation measures approximately 36m x 36m and weighs more than 40 tonnes. It is installed on the bridge over three months.
This year will see the most complex Bridge Effect ever created for Sydney New Year’s Eve. Programming takes a year of planning and then five days to set up, using 11 kilometres of rope lights and 600 individual circuits. The Bridge Effect installation is attached to a panel and truss system that uses more than 100,000 cable ties.
For the first time, the Midnight Fireworks display will be accompanied by a soundtrack of Australian contemporary music, which was compiled by musician Josh Abrahams (Addicted to Bass) and ARIA-Award-winning record producer Davide Carbone.
For the first time, the City has produced a Sydney New Year’s Eve anthem, We Are The Light, composed by Nick Wood and recorded by singers Joe Pringle and Liz Bojanic, drummer Alex Carapetis, and the Sydney Children’s Choir. All proceeds from the sale of the iTunes download go to the 2011 Sydney New Year’s Eve charity partner, CARE Australia.
Lord Mayor Clover Moore established the Lord Mayor’s East Africa Food Crisis Appeal in November with all funds raised going directly to CARE’s East Africa Emergency Appeal. The City kick-started the appeal in November with a donation of $100,000.
For a safe and enjoyable 2011 Sydney New Year’s Eve, visit sydneynewyearseve.com and:
- Pick a vantage point and be aware that popular areas fill up quickly.
- Plan ahead if you’re heading to the Harbour foreshore and take public transport.
- Remember not to take glass to the event and place rubbish into bins provided.
- For the full multimedia Sydney New Year’s Eve experience, tune your radio to 104.1 2DayFM to hear the synchronised fireworks soundtracks.