HANDA OPERA ON SYDNEY HARBOUR
Carmen stamps her feet, tosses back her hair and draws you into her world. Men fall instantly under her spell, and once you’ve heard her sultry Habanera, you’ll fall for opera’s favourite femme fatale, too.
Take a harbourside setting with an unrivalled view of the famous Sydney skyline. Build a pop-up opera house, complete with bars, restaurants and tiered seating. Add a monumental set, colourful, eye-catching costumes, spectacular dance and an explosion of fireworks, and you’ve got a night like no other.
This is Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour: the cultural event of the year. At sunset, gather with friends over a glass of something sparkling and a sumptuous Spanish meal before settling back to enjoy our vivacious, vivid production of Bizet’s Carmen.
Powerful voices sing those famous Spanish tunes, filling the night air with Spanish rhythms and fiery passion. Soldiers patrol, factory girls seduce shamelessly, glittering bullfighters parade and dancers pirouette their way across the stage as the captivating Carmen walks fearlessly towards a fate written in the cards.
Carmen on Sydney Harbour in 2013
Watch the trailer for Carmen on Sydney Harbour
Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour: the experience
Listen to the Toreador song from Carmen
Cast to be announced
Approximately 2 hours & 45 minutes, including one 35-minute interval.
Performed in French with English subtitles.
Opera Australia Principal Partner
Opera Australia Government Partners
“It’s the perfect potion — the glitzy visuals and hyperactive energy of a Broadway musical mixed with world-class opera.”
— TIME OUT
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 and all-weather event
The venue, audience seating, and the stage are completely uncovered. 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 or unfavourable weather conditions. 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 we recommend that you dress with this in mind and bring warm, weatherproof clothing. 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.
Performance pauses and cancellations
We will only cancel a performance during electrical storms (within 10km radius) or during times of extremely high winds and/or rain. The decision to cancel a performance is not made until 7.30pm or later and a cancellation may be called during the performance. So please plan to travel to the venue for a 7.30pm performance start time even in unfavourable weather conditions.
In some weather conditions Carmen may have a delayed start time or be paused for up to 50 minutes at any point throughout the performance.
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.