Sydney Opera House
Drop by Sydney Opera House, One of the Most Distinctive Buildings in the World!
Joan Sutherland Theatre
The proscenium arch theatre is considered the home of the Australian Ballet and Opera Australia. With a seating capacity of a little over 1,500 seats, it is the second biggest indoor venue to be found in the Opera House. It was originally called the Opera Theatre before it was dedicated to La Stupenda. One of the key features of this theatre is the rather shallow wing, which has led to the scenery being elevated from underneath the stage. Another fun fact about the venue is that a chicken walked away from the stage and this led to the installation of a net to cover the orchestra pit.
This majestic venue is considered to be the heart of the Sydney Opera House. With a high vaulted ceiling, over 2,000 seats, and the world's largest mechanical action pipe organ, this is a place that manages to feel intimate even at its full capacity. It is the premier place for orchestral performances and contemporary music shows. It has hosted various presentations and performances from people like Ella Fitzgerald, Luciano Pavarotti, Kanye West, and Pope John Paul II.
This is one of the best outdoor performance venues in the world. It also offers the largest seating capacity inside the Opera House. The space is located just below the granite Monumental Steps and offers magnificent views of both the city and the harbour. It is a popular location for contemporary musical concerts. International performers like The National, Sting, and Florence and the Machine have held concerts here.
The Monumental Steps
The Sydney Opera House may be best known for the interesting form of the roof, but the stairway designed by Tonkin Zulaikha Greer is very famous in itself. Dubbed The Monumental Steps, they lead up to the main performance spaces inside the building. Enjoy the magnificent view from the Podium once you reach the top before you head in to watch your show.
The name means 'water light' in the language of the Gadigal people, the traditional inhabitants of Bennelong Point. This show should not be missed when you drop by the Opera House. What makes it so special is that it is an exploration of the indigenous peoples' stories with the use of modern technology. The seven-minute show will illuminate the eastern sail of the structure at sunset and 7 pm every day. The best view will be seen from the top of the Monumental Steps so make sure to head up there before it starts. The best thing about it is that the projection is completely free.
If you're hungry, you're in luck because the Opera House is home to several great harbourside restaurants. One of them is Bennelong Restaurant by Chef Peter Gilmore. The establishment offers a menu that aims to reflect the country's culture. The dishes and the ambiance greatly complement the architecture of the UNESCO World Heritage site.
How to Get Tickets?
Entrance to the Sydney Opera House is free. Feel free to visit at any time and simply walk along the harbour if you want. While there is no entrance fee, you will generally need to purchase a ticket in order to watch a show.
How To Get Around?
Walking is generally the way to get around. It will also give you the best experience if you wish the explore the building. The space is also wheelchair accessible as there are provided ramps and lifts for wheelchair users.
Best Time to Visit
The Opera House is generally less busy in the morning. Spring is typically the least busy time of the year, so make sure to take advantage of that fact. During the day, the sunset is a great time to visit if you wish to watch the Badu Gili. You will also be witness to a stunning view of the Sydney harbour.
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Will I Need a Guide?
You will be fine even if you choose to explore on your own. However, a guide will certainly enhance the experience and it is the best way to appreciate the truly fascinating history of the building. There are daily tours in English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, and Spanish. You can choose from the Backstage Tour, Sydney Opera House Tour, and Taste of the Opera House. There is also an Access Tour for those with limited mobility.
How To Get There?
Take the bus, ferry, or train to Circular Quay and take a short walk to the building itself. If you are arriving in a cab, drive to the roundabout at Macquarie Street where you will be directed to somewhere to pull over. If you are driving a car, there's no need to worry. You will be able to park in the Wilson Car Park before heading in and out of the Opera House.