More than 30 acts have distanced themselves from Sydney Festival in response to an organised boycott campaign, protestingthe festival’s decision to accept $20,000 in funding from Israel’s Australian embassy to support Sydney Dance Company’s production of Decadance, by Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin.

The issue has sparked significant debate over the past few weeks. Below is an article written by three of the organisers of the boycott, and you can read a collection of anti-boycott voices here. Plus, read Jo Litson’s review of the production at the centre of the boycott, Decadance, here.


As we write this, over 30 programmed artists have formally withdrawn from Sydney Festival in boycott, and more withdrawals will be announced in coming days. If you’re following this news, you will understand that Sydney Festival maintains a ‘Star Partnership’ with the Israeli embassy, who have contributed a meagre $20,000 to the Festival. This alone warrants a boycott, for reasons we will explain. But perhaps the most pernicious thing about the establishment of this partnership was its timing.

Decadance Decadance