- From: The Australian
- April 26, 2013
Wine, cheese, comedy -- in a library? Evidently, this isn't your average book-club meeting. This is Late Night Library, something decidedly different.
The City of Sydney council launched the Late Night Library program in 2011 as a way of revitalising the city's night-time entertainment options. Originally based at Surry Hills Library, word spread quickly and the free events, ranging from cult film screenings and discussion panels to erotic fan-fiction readings and performances where local personalities read embarrassing excerpts from their teenage diaries, became regularly booked out. More than 4000 people have attended these late-night events since the launch and the program has expanded. This year, events will be held not only at Surry Hills but also at the Customs House, Kings Cross and Newtown libraries.
"Libraries aren't just for quiet reading any more," Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore says. "We want them to be useful for everyone, including people who can't get there in the day."
Libraries across the country are redefining themselves as dynamic and multi-functional cultural centres. While they continue to provide a haven for quiet reading and reflection in the noise of a big city, by night they are discovering a second vocation as centres of community interaction and broader cultural exploration.