(8pm, Thursday 29 November 2012, Martin Place)
Hello, everyone, welcome to our Martin Place Children's Concert and Tree lighting.
I'd like to acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of our land, and to pay my respects to their Elders. I also acknowledge the people of 200 nations who live in our city.
Tonight's concert marks the start of Christmas in the City, and from tonight you can see the colourful light projections on Town Hall, feature Christmas around the World. They'll be there every night until Christmas itself.
We also have trees across the city, with this spectacular tree we're lighting tonight.
We'll have our traditional Village Christmas concerts in Rushcutters Bay, Rosebery, Alexandria and Surry Hills and for families coming to the city for Christmas shopping, there is a fantastic series of choirs performing every Thursday night around the city, from 7 to 9pm.
Our Charity Partner this year is the Australian Children's Music Foundation, a not-for-profit group that uses music to inspire and enrich the lives of Australian children. Please support them by buying a showbag.
I want to thank our generous sponsors who make this celebration possible:
- Our Major Sponsor, American Express
- Our Media Partners, 2DAY FM and The Daily Telegraph and
- Our Supporting Sponsors, Lindt Master Chocolatiers and Sofitel.
I hope you're all enjoying tonight, and a very special thank-you to our wonderful performers and to the City's Event staff who work so hard to put it on.
I wish all of you, and your families the Christmas message of peace, hope and joy. Have a happy and safe Christmas.
And now, I ask the winner of this year's Colouring-In competition up to the stage, Bethany, to push the switch to light the Martin Place Christmas Tree for 2012.