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Escape to Sydney Opera House this summer

December 1, 2016 Attraction No Comments Email Email

unnamed-8Just in time for summer, the Opera House today launched a three-month program of entertainment, theatre, music, dining, tours and creative play that will transform Bennelong Point into an unmissable seasonal destination capturing the glory of summers past.

Packed with fairground fun, the Opera House invites kids and adults to step back in time with a carnival-themed program of shows and activities from December to February, with more to see and do than ever before:

  • The return of the much-loved Summer Playground in January brings a vintage Coney Island vibe to the Western Broadwalk, offering free entertainers and music, fairground games, creative play for kids and a charming pop-up outdoor venue, complete with bar, alfresco dining and a giant sandpit.
  • On stage, the triumphant return of the smash-hit cabaret Club Swizzle, the debut of daring French hipster circus Barbu, chaotic kids cabaret The Funatorium: Mad Hatter’s Tea Party and the world-premiere of Circus 1903 will transport you back to a time of spellbinding spectacle, raucous fun and revelry.
  • The inaugural 24-hour pop culture extravaganza BINGEFEST, big name contemporary music artists like Amanda Palmer, and family-friendly shows including George’s Marvellous Medicine, Emily Brown and the Thing and the brand new Deadly 60 are just some of the other highlights of the 115 shows on stage at the Opera House this summer.
  • For those looking to make the most of long warm days, there’s even more time to explore off stage with extended twilight tours and new summer menus across the Opera House’s six on site bars and restaurants.

Jade McKellar, Sydney Opera House Director of Visitor Experience said: “The Sydney Opera House offers a unique take on summer and this year is no different, from world-class entertainment to laid-back dining, all set against our spectacular harbourside backdrop.


Circus 1903

“This year’s program is all about escapism – bringing together music, dance and vintage cabaret with an incredible line-up of entertainment and free family fun that will transport you back to a time gone by. With more to do and see than ever before, and experiences to suit every budget, it’s the perfect place to play, unwind and rediscover why you love this city.”

Around the site

  • Roll up! Roll up for free entertainment, games and harbourside dining as the Western Broadwalk transforms into a vintage carnival inspired Summer Playground (6-29 January).
  • There’s even more time to explore beneath Australia’s famous sails with extra twilight Sydney Opera House Tours (5.30pm and 6pm daily, save 10% by booking online).
  • Little adventurers can discover a world of drama and wonder backstage on the Junior Adventure – a jam packed one hour tour just for kids, complete with costume dress ups (2-27 January).


  • Charismatic cabaret Club Swizzle returns to serve up outrageous burlesque, gravity-defying acrobatics and infectious musical revelry – all on, around and over a cocktail bar (9 December-29 January).
  • World-premiere Circus 1903 brings together the producers of best-selling magic show The Illusionists and award-winning War Horse puppeteers to present a thrilling turn-of-the-century circus spectacular, with a jaw-dropping twist (18-29 December).
  • The inaugural BINGEFEST is a 24-hour celebration of addictive storytelling, performance art, journalism, video games, pop culture icons and podcast trailblazers…and cats (17-18 December).
  • Daring Canadian hipster circus Barbu brings a bellyful of cheeky humour and brazen eccentricity with exceptionally strong men and women delivering edge-of-your-seat entertainment set to a rollicking electro-trad soundtrack (8 February-4 March).
  • Queen of punk cabaret Amanda Palmer returns to the Opera House for an intimate solo performance spanning The Dresden Dolls, fan favourites and all new songs (21 January).
  • Festival favourites since their breakthrough The Fool, So-Cal dream-rock quartet Warpaint bring their searing indie-rock to the stage with the recently released album, Heads Up (25 February).


Club Swizzle

Kids & Families

  • Created by the production team behind the smash-hit seasons of The Snail and The Whale and The Gruffalo Emily Brown and the Thing is a warm-hearted, witty family play filled with original music, beautiful puppetry, physical storytelling and lots of laughs (4-15 January).
  • Adventurer and wildlife expert Steve Backshall is back by popular demand with his brand new show Deadly 60: Pole to Pole (7-8 January).
  • The Funatorium: Mad Hatter’s Tea Party is the silliest tea party in town full of acrobatics, circus, singing, dancing and roller skates (7-22 January).
  • Roald Dahl‘s classic book, George’s Marvellous Medicine, bounds off the page in a spectacular new live show packed with mischief, magic and giant laughs (17-25 January).

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