HANDA OPERA ON SYDNEY HARBOUR
In Aida, Verdi masterfully puts the intimate affairs of the heart against the grandeur of the universe: where kingdoms rise and fall and the sands of time grind onwards.
What grander setting could there be for such an opera than Sydney Harbour itself: awash with the light of the city and the Sydney Opera House silhouetted against the setting sun?
Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour has become a huge part of the cultural landscape, combining all of the things Sydney does best: world-class opera, fine dining, sunsets and spectacle on the harbour's edge.
It's a monumental undertaking, with a team of more than 700 people involved in the project before a single note is heard over the harbour.
Aida is the biggest opera we've ever performed on the opera stage. But amid all of the spectacle, the famous 'Triumphal March', battle scenes and ancient temples, there's an emotional heart.
Long after the fireworks have faded from the sky and Amneris sings her quiet, concluding prayer, you'll see the true mastery of this opera: it is at once an historic epic and an utterly relatable human tragedy (read the story).
A setting like this demands a spectacular opera, so prepare for a performance of huge proportions. A royal love triangle, a war, and the famous 'Triumphal March' with Egyptians en masse will light up the waters of Sydney's magnificent harbour.
Dining & drinks at The Platinum Club
The Platinum Club is an exclusive undercover restaurant and bar with spectacular views overlooking Sydney Harbour and the Sydney Opera House.
New bookings: simply add your dining or drinks selection to your cart after choosing your tickets to Aida on Sydney Harbour.
Existing bookings: sign in to your account and go to your 'Upcoming Performances' to add pre-show dining or interval drinks.
|SET & COSTUME DESIGNER||Mark Thompson|
|LIGHTING DESIGNER||Matt Scott|
|SOUND DESIGNER||Tony David Cray|
|SITE DESIGNER||Eamon D'Arcy|
|THE KING||Gennadi Dubinsky|
|HIGH PRIESTESS||Eva Kong|
* 27, 29 March; 1, 4, 7, 9, 11, 14, 16, 18, 21, 23, 25 April
† 28, 31 March; 2, 5, 8, 10, 12, 15, 17, 19, 22, 24, 26 April
Opera Australia Principal Partner
Opera Australia Government Partners
Running time: approximately 2 hours & 45 minutes, including one 35-minute interval.
Performed in Italian with English translations.
A rebellion is brewing on Egypt’s borders, and for both the oppressor and the oppressed, loves and loyalties are about to be tested.
Egypt needs a hero to lead their army, and the High Priest has chosen Radamès. Egypt’s fortunes will turn on his sword, but Radamès has a higher purpose. Through victory in battle, he hopes to win the hand of the beautiful slave girl Aida – handmaiden to the princess Amneris, and secretly, an Ethiopian princess.
Aida is torn between her love for the Egyptian hero and her despair for the country he must march against – her homeland.
And the Princess Amneris, who also desires Radamès, is beginning to have suspicions that her hero might prefer her slave…
As Radamès returns to Egypt in triumph, Aida is greeted with a terrible sight – her father, the King of Ethiopia, is among the slaves.
Just when all seems lost, the King of Egypt deals another blow: promising the triumphant Radamès his daughter Amneris’ hand.
On the banks of the Nile, the lovers arrange to meet one last time.
But the conquered Ethiopian King has a plan to save his country. Aida has to make a devastating choice.
In the darkness, the King’s plan, Aida’s conflicted heart and Radamès’ steadfast love collide in a devastating finale.
Mrs Macquaries Road, leading into the venue, is likely to experience traffic congestion. We highly recommend avoiding this road by catching public transport or parking in surrounding car parks and then catching our free shuttle bus. Or, be delivered right to the Point in style by catching a water taxi.
When walking from the train/bus remember that access to the venue via the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney is only possible prior to 6pm. After this time, the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney is closed from all entrances and not possible to walk through.
The nearest train stations are:
St James: approximately a 16-minute walk* (1.3 km)
Martin Place: approximately an 18-minute walk* (1.5 km)
Circular Quay: approximately a 29-minute walk* (2.3 km)
*These linked maps and estimated walk times use routes outside of The Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney. If you're walking before the Garden gates close (prior to 6.30pm in March and 6pm in April), using a route through the Garden will save time.
Bus route 200 stops on Macquarie Street. View the timetable.
All schedules, times and dates can be viewed at the transportnsw.info.
The Domain Car
Park is the closest car park. From 4:30pm, a flat rate of $10 applies. The
carpark will be open until 1am during the performance season. A free shuttle
bus is available to guests who park in the Domain Car Park (see details below).
Parking spots for those with disability parking permits are located at the northern
end of the ground floor.
There is metered parking along Mrs Macquaries Road, Hospital Road and Macquarie Street. Meters accept cash, credit card or payment by mobile phone. You need to register to pay with your mobile phone at mpark.com.au.
Art Gallery Road, leading into the venue, is likely to experience traffic congestion. We highly recommend arranging an alternative drop off/meeting point.
The pre-performance shuttle service starts at 4:30pm until 7:30pm and loops from
the Domain Car Park (departing from Sir John Young Crescent on the ground floor) to
the venue entrance on Mrs Macquaries Road.
The post-performance shuttle service starts from 9:50pm until midnight and stops at both the Art Gallery of NSW and the Domain Car Park.
The Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour shuttle bus departs from the ground floor of the Domain Car Park and is wheelchair accessible.
Yellow Water Taxis run a special service during the Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour performance season.
Water taxis will depart regularly from Man O'War Jetty (next to Sydney Opera House) from 4.30pm until 7.30pm and drop off at The Andrew (Boy) Charlton Pool wharf in Woolloomooloo Bay, which is a 3 minute walk to the venue. After the performance, taxis will recommence at 9:50pm for the return trip and make an additional drop-off stop only at Circular Quay. Tickets are $10 each way.
Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour is an open-air event
The venue and the stage are completely uncovered and there is a certain risk of bad weather. The event is an all-weather experience and Opera Australia is committed to going ahead with a performance of Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour even in doubtful weather conditions. We want everyone at Handa Opera at Sydney Harbour to have a wonderful night and we understand that the experience can be affected by rain. Please come prepared so that you are as comfortable as possible, and ready to support the performers, who will carry on singing in the rain.
Bring warm and waterproof clothing
Sydney weather is full of surprises so please bring warm and waterproof clothing, just in case. Please note that although umbrellas can be brought to the venue, out of consideration for other members of the audience they cannot be used during the performance.
Ponchos will be available for customers who have not come prepared but because showers can be passing, ponchos will only be given out once it has been raining for 5 minutes straight. Ponchos will be available for collection from the front and back of the seating area and we ask customers to please keep in mind the time it takes to hand out ponchos, that a wait in the rain is likely (a good reason to come prepared with a poncho). Ponchos will be re-collected at the exits, to avoid littering the gardens and harbour area.
Performance pauses and cancellations
While we endeavour to perform in all weather conditions, we will cancel a performance during electrical storms (within 10km radius) or during times of extremely high winds and/or extremely heavy rain. The decision to cancel a performance is not made until 7.30pm or later and a cancellation may be called during the performance. Please plan to travel to the venue for a 7.30pm performance start time even in doubtful weather conditions.
In some cases due to weather conditions, Aida may have a delayed start time or be delayed by up to 50 minutes at any point throughout the performance. When delaying a performance, Opera Australia must consider the safety of its performers in calling a performance stop.
If a performance is cancelled prior to interval, ticket holders can exchange the ticket for a subsequent performance or have the ticket price refunded in full. Customers should contact the organisation from whom they purchased their tickets (i.e. Opera Australia / Ticketmaster / Sydney Opera House) to organise an exchange or refund the next business day.
Auxiliary expenses including travel, accommodation or hospitality which you have arranged in conjunction with the performance are at your own risk and not refundable by Opera Australia.
At this year’s Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour, the flavours of northern Africa and the Middle East come together in a range of menus designed to complement Verdi’s Egyptian masterpiece. Whether you choose share plates and drinks from one of the terraces, or splash out on one of the two pre-performance menus at the Platinum Club, there are lots of ways to eat at Aida on Sydney Harbour. Gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegetarian food options are all available.
Sit and relax with a mezze-style share plate, enjoy a Middle-Eastern-inspired main course and finish with a pistachio & fig cheesecake, or one of our other refreshing dessert choices. Price range: $8 - $28.
The Northern & Southern Terraces
Enjoy pop-up café-style dining with kebabs, falafel and tagine from the Kasbah Kitchen, in an informal setting overlooking Sydney Harbour and the iconic Sydney skyline. Price range: $8 - $26.
Qantas Garden Bar
Gather with friends and enjoy cold beverages, zesty small bites, sweet treats and pastries. Price range: $8 - $15.
Sparkling & Oyster Bars
Enjoy sparkling wine and oysters or a selection of sweet and savoury delicacies including fresh Turkish delight. Price range $5 - $12.
Please don't bring a picnic. Only food and beverages purchased on site can be consumed within the venue.
The Platinum Club at Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour is an undercover restaurant and bar with spectacular views overlooking Sydney Harbour.
This is pop-up at its most magnificent.
Guests who pre-book for the Platinum Club access bespoke dining and menus not available elsewhere on site, and beat the queues with dedicated wait staff and restroom facilities. Platinum Club tickets holders also have exclusive access to the Club after the performance.
The Platinum Club is guaranteed to impress your date, friends or business clients.
Select from these pre-performance and interval options:
PRE-PERFORMANCE RESTAURANT $220 (from 5.30pm)
A North African-inspired three-course dinner with premium Tyrrell's wines. The Platinum Club’s award-winning chefs serve you an exquisite menu with options including Coriander Spiced Salmon Gravadlax, 12 Hour Slow Cooked Lamb, Caramelised Fig Pavlova, and other delicacies. View the full menu.
PRE-PERFORMANCE BAR $110 (from 6pm)
Enjoy an exquisite signature buffet and Tyrrell’s Wines in the Platinum Club Bar, including a mezze selection, cheeses and desserts. View the full menu.
INTERVAL DRINKS $60
Escape the queues and enjoy interval drinks in the exclusive Platinum Club.
New Bookings: Simply add your dining or drinks selection to your cart after choosing your tickets to Aida on Sydney Harbour.
Existing Bookings: sign in to your account and go to your 'Upcoming Performances' to add pre-show dining or interval drinks or phone our box office on 02 9318 8200.
Take a selfie with the dragon at #operaharbour for your chance to win the ultimate opera experience at the Sydney Opera House!
Facebook: Post your selfie on Opera Australia’s page for your chance to win
Twitter & Instagram: For your chance to win, tag @operaaustralia in your photo and post to your profile with #operaharbour
Handa Opera in Sydney Harbour has wheelchair locations, companion seats and level access seats available.
Wheelchair accessible seats
Customers requiring wheelchair and/or companion seating should contact the Ticketing Services Office on +61 2 9318 8200, Monday – Friday 9am to 5pm. Wheelchair locations and companion seats are in sections F, G and H, Row JJ.
Level access seats
The best seats for mobility impaired audience members (who are not bound to a wheelchair) are in the first 5 rows of sections A-E. The path to these seats is downhill to seats in row 1 and then up a few stairs to seats in higher rows. On the way out, the path is back uphill and mobility impaired patrons should consider requesting the use of a wheelchair (subject to availability) and assistance in exiting the venue. Assistance should be booked by contacting the Ticketing Services Office on +61 2 9318 8200, Monday – Friday 9am to 5pm. Any wheelchair provided by Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour will be made available to mobilise patrons around the site, however due to limited availability, cannot be made available for patrons to stay seated in.
Please also note that whilst Front-of-House do their very best to move patrons promptly, patrons requiring assistance exiting the venue may experience delays.