One of the most photographed and famous (if controversial) performing arts venues in the world
This Australian icon sits on Bennelong Point and is Sydney’s premiere venue for classical and contemporary music, opera, theatre and dance. As peaceful as it looks now, the House had a controversial beginning: while it was designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon, by the time the building was completed in 1973 its architect had been fired.
Many have pondered the building’s design over the years, comparing it variously to shells, waves and even a family of swans. Utzon never revealed his vision, only that it involved spheres.
The Opera House offers different tours that allow you to get intimate with the building, including some hosted in different languages and full ‘experience' packages. If you don't feel like shelling out, it's still free to sit on the steps for a quick lunch and walk by the water and gaze in marvel at those 1,056,000 pearly, self-cleaning Swedish tiles.
Where to eat and drink near Sydney Opera House
For the ultimate Opera House dining experience, book a pre-theatre dinner at Bennelong, or just pop in for a drink and a snack at the raw and cultured bar. Check out the Opera Kitchen, a harbourfront dining area that features a host of Sydney food identities including John Susman. Meander around to Bulletin Place for cocktails. Later in the evening kick the glamour up a notch at Hemmesphere and enjoy matched cigars and more cocktails into the morning.
With access into areas normally reserved for stars and their minders, this tour will have you treading the boards of its illustrious stages and sneaking into the dressing rooms of the Concert Hall, Opera and Drama Theatres, Playhouse and The Studio, while you are regaled with the secrets and stories that go on behind the curtain. Or perhaps you want to take on the conductor's baton in the Opera Theatre orchestra pit?
Backstage tours run daily at 7am and are $165, including a hearty breakfast served in the Green Room (the Green Room is not open on Sun or public holidays). Flat, enclosed rubber soled shoes must be worn. For safety reasons children 12 years and under are not permitted. Bookings essential. There are also junior tours of the Opera House for kids.
|Venue name:||Sydney Opera House||Contact:|
|Opening hours:||Box office: Mon-Sat 9am-8.30pm; Sun two hours prior to performance (in person only)|
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Things to do
Sydney Opera House Tour
It’s a rare chance that you’ll have the opportunity to explore a completely empty Opera House theatre. On this tour, you’ll be able to visit all of the main theatres (dependant on if there are shows on) – from the majestic Concert Hall to the quaint Drama...Walks and tours Until Monday May 22 2017
George's Marvellous Medicine
Roald Dahl’s 1981 book about a boy and his experimental potion is hitting the Opera House stage this summer. George, aged eight, creates a magical elixir using household ingredients in an attempt to rid himself of his grandmother’s constant nagging....Until Wednesday January 25 2017
Things to do
For the month of January, the Western Broadwalk of the Sydney Opera House will be turned into a vintage carnival-themed pop-up bar and restaurant where you can chill out before and after shows. Summer Playground will kick off every day from 10am with...Food and drink Until Sunday January 29 2017 Free
The brainchild of Brett Haylock, the creative producer of La Soirée (and its antecedent La Clique), Club Swizzle has many of the same alt-cabaret ingredients: sex, comedy and skill, served short and fast – but takes a bar as its setting and theme. A counter-top...Circuses Until Sunday January 29 2017
Powerhouse combo director Gale Edwards and designer Brian Thomson (HOSH's Carmen) created this production for Opera Australia's 2011 season – and it has proved a popular hit. Some love La bohème, some loathe it – but there's no doubt that there's plenty...Monday January 23 2017 - Friday March 24 2017
The Encounter is a trip; at this risk of sounding like your Dad in the seventies, it is far out. If you’ve never taken hallucinogens, it will probably get you close to that sensation – but with nothing more than a helluva sound design and a cracking tale....Monday January 23 2017 - Saturday January 28 2017
Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci
Pairing Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana and Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci in a double-bill of small-town Italian tragedy has become an opera tradition. And as Opera Australia artistic director Lyndon Terracini says, "The most famous and the best tenors in...Tuesday January 24 2017 - Saturday February 4 2017
In 1989 a 32 year-old Nigel Kennedy made his reputation with a blockbuster recording of Vivaldi: Four Seasons that’s still selling well. Now he has remade that Baroque masterpiece in his own bad-boy image, adding electric guitar, birdsong samples, jazz...Classical and opera Friday January 27 2017 - Saturday January 28 2017
Polish composer Karol Szymanowski co-wrote the libretto to his opera, in which a prophet (the Shepherd) arrives in the kingdom of Roger and tempts first his queen and then himself to abandon their reign to follow a path dedicated to nature, freedom and...Saturday January 28 2017 - Wednesday February 15 2017
We challenge you to find a bigger tearjerker than this in the opera canon; it's not just the story (based on Alexandre Dumas' popular 1848 novel La Dame aux Camélias) about a courtesan who falls for a young admirer, but sacrifices her chance at happiness...Friday February 3 2017 - Saturday April 1 2017