Quirky Live Entertainment Venues Around Sydney

The Birdcage, Sydney. Image: Supplied

Make those drinks with friends a little more entertaining!

Newsflash: live entertainment in Sydney is not dead. There’s still a copious amount of bars around Sydney that serve up wonderful live entertainment along with tasty drinks. The best ones, however, are the quirky ones. They show off eclectic styles of entertainment and share cool interior layouts. So whether you’re heading into the city itself or moseying out in the inner west, here are the quirkiest bars in Sydney to liven up your night of tipples.

Lazy Bones

Lazy Bones is a bohemian establishment in Marrickville, showcasing the best indie bands and solo acts that Australia has to offer. The best thing is, there’s live music every night of the week. While you enjoy the sounds, get a crafty cocktail at the bar and feast on pizza or some deli meats and cheeses.

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294 Marrickville Rd. Marrickville (entry via Illawarra Rd)

Gasoline Pony

Down the other end of the Marrickville Road main strip is Gasoline Pony. From Tuesday to Sunday, expect live entertainment to get you in the groovy mood. They serve up a quaint selection of locally brewed beers and wines, and a nice selection of bar snacks. Be sure to tip your band or solo artist as they play you their favourite tunes.

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115 Marrickville Rd, Marrickville

The Birdcage

Within the idiosyncratic venue called the Whirly Bird is a special night called The Birdcage, where the ladies and gents are a little more naughty and clad in eccentric attire. Imagine the 1920s making a comeback today. Not only do you get quirky live entertainment, but the bar comes stocked with wonderful tastes, from fancy champagne to wild cocktails.

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84 Union St, Pyrmont

Stonewall Hotel

Along Sydney’s iconic gay strip are a handful of wonderful live entertainment venues, but Stonewall Hotel tops the lot. Every night of the week is covered, including trivia night on Monday, go-go boys on Thursday and amateur drag on Sunday night. Pop by on a Saturday night for well-rehearsed drag queen shows, but be sure to go easy on the Long Island iced teas.

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175 Oxford St, Darlinghurst

Lansdowne Hotel

These guys are the top spot for live gigs, with regular headlining shows from Australia and the world’s best up-and-coming artists. Bohemian doesn’t even encapsulate what Lansdowne Hotel is about, with it’s miscreant vibe and graffiti-laden walls. The bands and solo artists that take to the stage love to battle the status quo, and bring flair to the rogue people of Sydney.

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2-6 City Rd, Chippendale

Golden Age Cinema and Bar

At Golden Age Cinema and Bar, you’d be hard-pressed to find all the popular new releases. They love the golden age of cinema, and the underground films that are really good and a little esoteric for the movie market. As well as movies, they host live music nearly every weekend as well as trivia every Tuesday. Imbibe on some wine, cocktails or beer and be sure to taste the seasonal menu the kitchen offers.

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80 Commonwealth St, Surry Hills

The Magicians Cabaret Theatre

If you’ve watched the movie Burlesque featuring Cher and Christina Aguilera, then you’ll know exactly what The Magicians Cabaret Theatre looks like. Think chic with a 1930s feel, from velvet curtains to dimly lit tables. Take a seat and enjoy a delicious dinner with a vibrant show. And yes, they do magic too.

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91 Riley St, Darlinghurst

Marble Bar

Marble Bar is a Sydney staple, built in 1893 and fully restored in 2005 after a few years of dilapidation. Housed under the Hilton on George Street, the interior of this bar is Victorian style with a mahogany bar and marble archways. Before you ask, they have live music on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with happy hour between 4pm and 6pm daily. How fancy!

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Level B1, Hilton Sydney, 488 George St, Sydney

Imperial Hotel

The Imperial Hotel in Erskineville made notoriety in the 90s with the critically acclaimed film Priscilla: Queen of the Desert. Today, it still stands as an iconic drag queen bar in Sydney’s inner west. Recent renovations have welcomed the new era, where sexuality and gender are a little more exposed to the bustling world. Expect a mixed crowd of all peculiarities.

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35 Erskineville Rd, Erskineville

Frankie's Pizza

Welcome to Sydney’s finest rock’n’roll bar, dishing up the tastiest pizzas and the quirkiest bands. Frankie’s Pizza is another Sydney staple, where the bands love to share some great music. It’s like a modern day Grease lightning without the cheesy pickup lines. Be sure to take a gander at the changing beer list for some unique local and national beers, then find a seat and enjoy the show.

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50 Hunter St, Sydney

SoCal - The Funny Flamingo

Munch your way to utopia on “MexiCali” cuisine while giving that belly a good workout with hilarious local and international comedians at SoCal. Tickets start at $10pp, but we recommend splurging on their Snacks & Show package for $40pp, which includes a drink on arrival and a smorgasbord snack menu throughout the evening. The event goes off once a month on a Monday night, with the next event on 26 August, 2019.

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1 Young St, Neutral Bay