Parramatta's CBD will become one big party on Friday 10 January when Sydney Festival's Parra Opening Party (POP) shuts down the streets and turns up the fun.




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Party under a summer twilight sky with world-class music from soul-funk to fiddles, Mad Max-inspired Boxwars battles, hotter than hot DJ's, drummers, uke players and giant jellyfish, not to mention, back by popular demand the Rubber Duck. POP is not to be missed, and best of all, it's FREE.

Kicking off at the new time of 6pm on Friday evening, cardboard box aficionados Boxwars take to Church Street with 30 locals parading their own creations, accompanied by acrobats and a soundtrack to spur them on to the mother of all Boxwars Battles in Prince Alfred Park. It's crazy and chaotic and ridiculously good fun. 

Meanwhile some of the hottest acts of the summer perform on the main stage with Bella Kalolo in her only Sydney performance soothing your soul with her incredible voice, while the gravelly blues-infused folk of Ben Caplan and The Casual Smokers will keep you moving. Parisian-inspired tram-turned-venue La Toosh camp out on Church Street, playing host to DJs and the roots-infused fiddle player from Prince Edward Island, Gordie Mackeeman.

For a change of scenery, check out The Lennox at Riverside Theatres which is transformed into a culture club for the Festival. Warming up the new venue, Californian jazz trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, shows audiences why he's hailed as the "future of jazz".

Between bands, drop into the Parramatta Town Hall and see how you measure up in Kaldor Public Art Project's latest international exhibition Project 28: Roman Ondák. Information and Cultural Exchange will be open late, inviting you to view the Pearls of Granville multimedia exhibition.

In the Riverside Courtyard, Hot Dub Time Machine with DJ Tom Loud- the smash-hit of Sydney Festival 2013 and fringe festivals around the world - will have you dancing from 1954-2014, mashing the best of pop culture and music throughout the last 60 years.

As the sun sets, Prince Alfred Park becomes the beating heart of POP with soul/funk sensation Lee Fields & The Expressions taking centre stage and keeping the party going ‘til late.

Don't stand still for too long, or you'll miss the Giant Illuminated Jellyfish, youthful Ukes of Today, aMoment's immersive one-on-one experience, party starters Zin with their new street performance Take a Shot and the Waratah Drum Corps. Not a dull moment all night.

No BYO alcohol, no glass. Food and beverages on sale throughout the event. Leave the car at home, for detailed public transport information visit 131500.com or call 131500.

Road Closures Market St (Between Church St and Marsden St) will be closed to traffic from 5am Friday 10 Jan until 2am the following morning

Church Street (Between Phillip St and Victoria Rd) will be closed to traffic from 1pm Friday 10 Jan until 2am the following morning.

The following artists are also performing at other times throughout Sydney Festival: Ben Caplan and the Casual Smokers, Ambrose Akinmusire, Hot Dub Time Machine and Lee Fields & The Expressions.

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