Opera House / Circular Quay, Sydney

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  • Taken from the Sydney Botanical Gardens
    Taken from the Sydney Botanical Gardens
    by iandsmith
  • It's simply a standout
    It's simply a standout
    by iandsmith
  • Opera House / Circular Quay
    by ITjetsetter
  • iandsmith's Profile Photo

    The Opera House

    by iandsmith Updated Sep 30, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Is that a yacht passing by
    4 more images

    Favorite thing: This building is something of an enigma.
    Firstly, it's unavoidable. Every tourist coming here wants to see it and, when you do, it's certainly and eyecatcher. Yet beneath the stunning surface lie more questions than perhaps there are answers for even today.
    The main one for me is, "Why build an opera house whose accoustics don't match the grandeur of the exterior?". It's no secret that they need improving but you can't help but wonder why it wasn't done right in the first place.
    It probably had more to do with the fact that it was more than 10 times over budget by the time it was completed and the completion itself was something that looked like an insurmountable obstacle at one stage.
    The sails concept is no longer unique in the world but it has certainly left Sydney with one of the most recognizable foreshores of any city anywhere.
    The Opera House is situated on Bennelong Point, which reaches out into the harbour to the east of Circular Quay. The skyline of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the blue water of the harbour and the Sydney Opera House, viewed from a ferry or from the air, is dramatic and unforgettable.

    Fondest memory: Ironic, perhaps, that this Australian icon was designed by a Danish architect - Jorn Utzon.
    In the late 1950s the New South Wales (NSW) Government established an appeal fund to finance the construction of the Sydney Opera House, and conducted a competition for its design.
    Utzon's design was chosen. The irony was that his design was, arguably, beyond the capabilities of engineering of the time. Utzon spent a couple of years reworking the design and it was 1961 before he had solved the problem of how to build the distinguishing 'sails' of the roof.
    The venture experienced cost blow-outs from the original $10,000,000 and there were occasions when the NSW Government was tempted to call a halt. In 1966 the situation - with arguments about cost and the interior design, and the Government withholding progress payments - reached crisis point and Jorn Utzon resigned from the project. The building was eventually completed by others in 1973. After more than 30 years, the Sydney Opera House has its first interior designed by Utzon. The Utzon Room, a transformed reception hall that brings to life Jorn Utzon's original vision for his masterpiece, was officially opened on September 16, 2004.
    Sydney Opera House facts and figures:
    Was designed by Danish architect Jorn Utzon
    Was opened by Queen Elizabeth II on 20 October 1973
    Its first performance, The Australian Opera's production of War and Peace by Prokofiev
    Cost $AU 102,000,000 to build
    Conducts 3000 events each year
    Provides guided tours to 200,000 people each year
    Has an annual audience of 2 million for its performances
    Includes 1000 rooms
    Is 185 metres long and 120 metres wide
    Has 2194 pre-cast concrete sections as its roof
    Has roof sections held together by 350 kms of tensioned steel cable
    Has over 1 million tiles on the roof
    Uses 6225 square metres of glass and 645 kilometres of electric cable
    Ph: 61 2 9250 7111
    Fax: 61 2 9250 7950
    Website: www.sydneyoperahouse.com

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Budget Travel
    • Family Travel

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  • Gypsystravels's Profile Photo

    United Buddy Bears

    by Gypsystravels Updated Apr 26, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Bularia Buddy Bear
    4 more images

    Favorite thing: IDEA

    "WE HAVE TO GET TO KNOW EACH OTHER BETTER ... ,
    ... it makes us understand one another better,
    trust each other more, and live together more peacefully."

    In 2002 and 2003, this was the motto of the circle of "United Buddy Bears" next to the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin - now promoting this message of tolerance and understanding among nations on a global tour.

    These "United Buddy Bears" (each 2 m tall) stand together hand in hand in complete harmony - representing 125 member states of the United Nations.

    The idea for this exhibition was created 2002 by the inventors of the Buddy Bears Eva and Klaus Herlitz, having three aspects in mind

    MESSAGE

    Due to the diverse design of the Buddy Bears - always typical for the respective countries - their visitors can experience a journey around the world and receive a lot of information about the individual countries as the basis for a higher level of understanding.

    The symbolic message of the circle promotes tolerance and peaceful coexistence.

    ART

    Each Buddy Bear has been designed individually by an artist on behalf of his or her native country. The international artists' different styles are joined together in a very cheerful way as one work of art, spreading zest for life.
    Buddy Bear activities and help for children in need have formed an inseparable unit. A total of 1,114,000 € (as per Feruary 2006) has so far been generated through donations and selling Buddy Bears at auctions in aid of UNICEF and local organisations helping children in need.

    UNICEF main beneficiary of all Buddy Bear charity activities

    "As the circle of "United Buddy Bears" wants to promote international understanding, we would at the same time like to raise awareness about all those countries that desperately need support."

    ALL INFORMATION REGARDING THE UNITED BUDDY BEARS WAS OBTAINED FROM THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE

    Fondest memory: Bulgaria Buddy Bear
    Artist
    Klio Karadim

    Sponsor
    Buddy Bär Berlin GmbH

    "Black - White letters
    - condensed memories

    Written over centuries
    - alive today.

    Red - Green experiences.

    Stacked by people,
    created by nature.

    Unforgettable moments
    - of a childhood.
    Bulgaria"

    Klio Karadim

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  • 850prc's Profile Photo

    Cultural opportunities abound at the Opera House

    by 850prc Written Jul 17, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Sydney Opera House Harborside lobby

    Favorite thing: Everyone wants to SEE the Sydney Opera House. Most people tour it in some form or fashion. I'd think that the most entertaining and memorable visit would be to see or hear a show of some kind.

    Among the entities that call the Opera House home are..

    The Australian Ballet, www.australianballet.com.au, Phone 02/9223 9522

    The Australian Chamber Orchester, www.aco.com.au, Phone 02/9357 4111

    Opera Australia, www.opera-australia.org.au, Phone 02/9699 1099

    Sydney Symphony Orchestra, www.symphony.org.au, Phone 02/9334 4644

    Fondest memory: I only wish we could have had an opportunity to hear the Sydney Symphony or Chamber Orchestra in the Opera Hall. They were not performing during our visit to Sydney.

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  • Marpessa's Profile Photo

    Circular Quay

    by Marpessa Written Dec 27, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Circular Quay performer

    Favorite thing: A great place to walk around in summer. Yes there are heaps of tourists, but that's what makes it a lively place to be. You have the Sydney Opera House on one side, the Rocks and Sydney Harbour Bridge on the other. In the middle are different kinds of ferries that will take you to almost any point in the harbour.

    Fondest memory: There are quite a few street performers around the Quay with all performing different kinds of acts, some comical, some 'dangerous' (aka, with fire involved) and there was even some aboriginals performing 'tribal' dances (representing a story).

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Budget Travel
    • Backpacking

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  • Ronald_T's Profile Photo

    The Opera House...

    by Ronald_T Updated Apr 15, 2004

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Opera House...

    Favorite thing: Visit the Opera House (commonly known as "the nun's scrum", a subject of thousands of postcards and T-shirts. With its image on millions of happy snaps, the Sydney Opera House is Australia's most recognisable icon. Yet is not without controversy, 14 troubled years (construction commenced in 1959 and finished in 1973), and $95 million over budget later, its controversial sail-like roofs gleam and glisten against the appropriate backdrop of Sydney Harbour. Finally finished in 1973, it now has an impressive yearly program of up to 3000 contemporary and classical performances and is a truly memorable place for theatre, opera and ballet, in one of the most magnificent city settings anywhere in the
    world. The Opera House was build after a design from "Joern Utzon".

    See for more pics in the Opera House travelogue please.

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  • Canadienne's Profile Photo

    The Sydney Opera House

    by Canadienne Written Mar 31, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Sydney Opera House

    Favorite thing: The Sydney Opera House is recognizable around the world. . .and everyone seems to have an opinion about its attractiveness (or lack thereof). I was surprised by how much I liked the look of it ~ it radiates in the daylight. . .and creates some striking shadows on the water as the sun rises and sets.

    The design and construction of the Opera House were troubled ~ it's worth taking a guided tour to get the insider's history and view of the process.

    Related to:
    • Theater Travel
    • Architecture

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  • coldchisel's Profile Photo

    see the Sydney Opera House it...

    by coldchisel Written Aug 25, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: see the Sydney Opera House it is breath taking inside and out.I would have loved to have seen a show in there.

    Fondest memory: I miss the night life the most.There was always something to do,a club to goto,or a great pub to meet friends.I found everyone to be Very friendly and helpful with advice or directions.

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  • GO TO CIRCULAR QUAY. EVERYON...

    by JOSHUA75 Written Aug 24, 2002

    Favorite thing: GO TO CIRCULAR QUAY. EVERYON MENTIONS THIS BECAUSE THERE IS A REASON. IT'S REAL COOL. LOTS OF VENDORS AND STREET ACTS. NOT TOO MANY AUSSIES THOUGH! HAHAH

    Fondest memory: THE WATER. THE BEAUTY OF A PORT THAT OPENS TO THE OCEAN IS JUST AMAZING. TAKE A BOAT RIDE UP THE ADJACENT RIVER. NICE.

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  • rozehill's Profile Photo

    Sydney Opera HouseThe Sydney...

    by rozehill Written Aug 24, 2002

    0.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Sydney Opera House
    The Sydney Opera House is the busiest performing arts centre in the world. Since its opening in 1973, it has brought countless hours of entertainment to millions of people and has continued to attract the best in world class talent year after year. Even these days, many visitors are surprised to find that the Sydney Opera House is really a complex of theatres and halls all linked together beneath its famous shells. In an average year, the Sydney Opera House presents theatre, musicals, opera, contemporary dance, ballet, every form of music from symphony concerts to jazz as well as exhibitions and films. It averages around 3,000 events each year with audiences totaling up to two million. In addition, approximately 200,000 people take a guided tour of the complex each year. The Opera House operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year except Christmas Day and Good Friday.

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  • CandS's Profile Photo

    The Sydney Opera House...

    by CandS Updated Jan 23, 2004
    Sydney Opera House

    Favorite thing: Here is the Sydney Opera House again late in the afternoon... The Opera House looks so different depending on where you're standing...

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  • CandS's Profile Photo

    Sydney Opera House

    by CandS Updated Jan 23, 2004

    0.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Sydney Opera House

    Favorite thing: Here is another view of the Sydney Opera House... This is looking from the back of the building out towards the water...

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  • The... Phantom of the Opera!

    by gmadmax Updated Mar 27, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: This is the most famous Australian building(same with Harbour bridge),the Opera House! It has very strange shape and it looks very nice from inside too!

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  • Adriani's Profile Photo

    check out the world famous...

    by Adriani Written Aug 24, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: check out the world famous SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE. I guess I don't even have to mention about this monumental landmark. Nobody will ever dream of not visiting this place if they were to be in Sydney.

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  • I will encourage you to go to...

    by Icy_Cold Written Aug 24, 2002

    0.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: I will encourage you to go to the Sydney Opera House.
    It is really fanastic.
    You will not regret at all.

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  • CandS's Profile Photo

    Opera House again...

    by CandS Written Aug 24, 2002

    0.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Check out the Sydney Opera House...you really can't miss it! You will even see it from most aeroplanes as you fly into or out of Sydney.

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