Mary’s Presents Inaugural HERE NOW Festival for Vivid Sydney food.

HERE NOW Vivid Sydney
Credit: Tom W | HERE NOW Vivid Sydney

Mary’s Presents HERE NOW, a day-to-night festival of abundance, smashing food and wine, music and art to celebrate the community. Taking place at Macquarie Place Park on Saturday 11 June as part of Vivid Sydney 2023, the ticketed 18+event will be co-curated by drinks journalist and P&V Wine and Liquor Merchants co-founder Mike Bennie, and acclaimed farmer and restaurateur Palisa Anderson.

HERE NOW will be one of the inaugural initiatives included in Vivid Food, a brand-new pillar for the Vivid Sydney 2023 program comprising delicious pop-ups and exclusive collaborations with chefs and restaurateurs in line with the festival theme, ‘Vivid Sydney, Naturally’. Mary’s Co-Founders Jake Smyth and Kenny Graham have brought together the most exciting names, cult favourites and emerging artists who are forging new paths for food, wine, music and art into the one-day festival.

“HERE NOW is a call for togetherness and exploration of our shared stories and common points of connection through the worlds of food, music, booze and art.” Says Mary’s Co-Founder Jake Smyth, “The purest, most powerful and enduring of human experiences are shared, whether through song, around cooking fires or in the euphoria of drink. Together we will swirl these uniquely human explorations of connection, creating a moment that is uniquely Here and Now.”

”Mary’s Co-Founder Kenny Graham further adds, “The greatest parties are usually at your house, where you get to play a part in every aspect of the event. We’re trying to bring a bit of that to HERE NOW. The music, the cooking, and the enjoyment should all feed into each other and it’s the greatest achievement when everyone feels that they played a part in the final product.”

Co-Curated by an acclaimed farmer and restaurateur Palisa Anderson (Boon Luck Farm Organics, Chat Thai), and drinks journalist and P&V Wine and Liquor Merchants co-founder Mike Bennie, HERE NOW will feature a collection of food and wine vendors showcasing the best of NSW’s abundant hospitality community. Food headliners will be included in the ticket price.

For the food offering, Co-Curator Palisa Anderson notes “The Here Now festival is aiming to be an intimate and inclusive event with a diverse array of food and drinks offerings that celebrate our sustainable food system in NSW. It is honours that Sydney has a diverse array of representation from our communities which makes it an exciting destination city to eat in 2023.”

Co-Curator Mike Bennie further adds, “What a coup that we now have a bounty of inner city andproximate-to-Sydney-metro artisan winemakers, brewers, distillers and drinks producers to enhance our worlds and deliver colour to Here Now. The focus for the Here Now festival and gathering is on the contemporary mores of Sydney, so there will be a strong reflection in the drinks producers and beverages available to taste and consume–exciting, progressive, diverse, authentic liquids from locals who are reconfiguring Sydney’s cultural image. Oh, and they’re delicious.”

Kenny Graham describes the music element of the festival as “energetic, spontaneous, low-fi and of the moment.”There will be interactive music performances within the park, with acoustic and stripped-back live sets from emerging artists including genre-bending musician Danté Knows. With no central stage, ticket holders will feel connected with the talent in a unique environment. DJs will also be spinning tunes throughout the day into the evening.”

For those wanting to kick on post the festival, Mary’s will be hosting an official after party at Mary’s Underground from 9pm with an array of artists performing in the iconic live music venue as part of VividSydney. Tickets will be available to purchase separately or in a combined package with HERE NOWtickets.

Jake Smyth adds, “The musical line-up is made up of wild creative talent, eclectic and wild and free. The span genre, but all deliver on the foundation of creating moments in time that transcend and transport the audience. From Dante Knows’ stripped-back hip hop show, to Gordon Koang’s Sudanese Pop, to DJ sets from Eloise & Reenie, the music talent is of a depth and style that is fresh and new and deeply exciting. The HN Afterparty will see these performers supercharged into a Full-Party mode, from 9pm until the wheels fall off!”

Interactive art will be roaming and displayed throughout the festival park, celebrating the best of NSW artists and engaging with the guests. Watch this space for a full lineup of artists, musicians and food vendors still to come. HERE NOW will bring a new flavour to Macquarie Place Park, encouraging the community to celebrate our state’s food, art, music and culture in the heart of Vivid Sydney from 3pm to 9pm.

Vivid Sydney
Macquarie Place Park
36 Bridge Street, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia
11 June, 3pm – 9pm