New Year's Eve party queen ... Kylie Minogue has lent her expertise to the celebrations.
When Kylie Minogue was first mooted as the creative ambassador for New Year's Eve 2012, the idea of signing up the pop princess seemed a little ambitious.
''We were like, 'Hmm, good luck with that,''' says the City of Sydney producer Aneurin Coffey of the pitch by its contractors Imagination Australia, who pull together the creative side of the event.
But once Minogue got wind of the idea, there was no stopping her. ''They got a meeting and as soon as we got into the room with her, she was so excited to be involved,'' Coffey says. ''We couldn't hold her back.''
As creative ambassador, Minogue has been in touch with the team weekly, bringing the ''Kylie sparkle'' across the event, from the theme of ''Embrace'' and its logo - which features a swirl of magenta, yellow, purple and red, and a ''K'' for Kylie - to the soundtrack to the night. ''There's everything from Led Zeppelin to Florence + the Machine and a good dose of Kylie,'' Coffey says.
''Also, we were coming to her for her creative expertise - we weren't asking for her to play a concert, we were asking her to work with us to make New Year's Eve the best it can be.''
Minogue says: ''So many things are happening for my 25th anniversary in music, but I can't think of a better finale for the K25 year than to be in Australia for the Sydney NYE celebrations. No matter where I am in the world, I always watch Sydney New Year's Eve fireworks and, even though I'm from Melbourne, I could not miss this opportunity to celebrate 25 years of performing at the New Year's Eve capital of the world!''
Aspects bearing the Kylie stamp include the Lord Mayor's Picnic - hosting children with special needs and disabilities or from disadvantaged backgrounds - which Minogue named Embrace the Stars, referring to the family and carers that support the children.
The whole theme of ''embrace'' is meant to reflect the idea of people embracing at midnight, but also about embracing new ideas, opportunities and change, Coffey says.
''It's embracing the diversity that people bring to communities, a microcosm of which is around the harbour on New Year's Eve, with 1.6 million people from a huge range of backgrounds all embracing the event.''
As ever, the symbol appearing on the Harbour Bridge after the fireworks remains tightly under wraps. In total, $700,000 worth of fireworks will light up the harbour (including from the underside of the bridge this year), with the entire event costing $6.6 million, and estimated to bring $156 million into the local economy.
A smartphone app has also been created that will allow spectators to hold up their phones at specific times and be part of synchronised colour moments.
While Minogue isn't performing on the night, she will be there to see the fruits of her labour. Hobnobbing with Minogue aside, ''There's no better job,'' Coffey says of the big night. ''Not only do you get to work on an event for 15 months and then get the payoff when 1.6 million people gasp around the harbour, but you also get to play with seven tonnes of fireworks. Who wouldn't want to do that?''
NEW YEAR'S EVE 2012
For vantage points, times, app download and more information, see sydneynewyearseve.com. The program of events starts at 6pm.
And now for something completely different: music and burlesque ''cult carousel'' Black Cherry has pulled together a night offering all manner of entertainment - and away from the crowds.
There's '60s music, rockabilly, rock'n'roll karaoke backed by a live band, ska by Area-7, burlesque performers, ''parody viking rock'' from Barbarion and Mexican food truck Cantina Mobil serving food.
There are also mechanical bull rides - a free ride is included in every ticket. ''Our event is a celebration of rock'n'roll and, of course, that's got American roots,'' the co-founder and promoter of Black Cherry, Danielle Hatton, says. ''So we thought a mechanical bull would be a fun thing to have on New Year's Eve.''
And because it's at Marrickville's Factory Theatre, revellers can dodge the crowd chaos of elsewhere in the city.
''We've given you anything you want in the same spot,'' Hatton says. ''It's action-packed entertainment from doors open to close.''
BLACK CHERRY NEW YEAR'S EVE
From 9pm, Factory Theatre, 105 Victoria Road, Marrickville, factorytheatre.com.au, 9550 3666, $55.
OTHER NEW YEAR'S OPTIONS
The Chemical Brothers, Knife Party and Fedde Le Grand, 8pm, Bondi Beach, shorething.com.au, 1300 338 161, $138.
PEATS RIDGE FESTIVAL
John Butler Trio, Friendly Fires, Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings and more, December 29-January 1, Glenworth Valley Peats Ridge, peatsridgefestival.com.au, 1300 762 545, $355.
IVY - PACHA NYE 2012
AN21, Max Vangelli and more, 4pm, Ivy, 320-330 George Street, city, pachasydney.com, $120.
HARBOUR PARTY 2012
Ricki-Lee, Marvin Priest, the Aston Shuffle and more, 6.30pm, Luna Park, harbourparty.com, 13 28 49, from $132.