On October 21st, 1973, Queen Elizabeth inaugurated the Sydney Opera House for the first time. Here are five facts you need to know about the iconic Sydney Building.
1. A Danish Architect built it after being selected in a competition
Thanks to his visionary design and bold talent, Jørn Utzon started building the Opera is 1957 until 1973. This reflected into a mix of a modern urban sculpture and the graceful soft white of the patterned tiles - shining in the day and glowing at night. He resigned in 1966 but then was regularly called back for design changes and renovations. In 2003, Utzon received the international architecture's highest honour, the Pritzker Prize. Source: Sydney Opera House.
2. The Sydney Opera House World Heritage building listed since 2007
UNESCO says it itself: “Sydney Opera House is a great architectural work of the 20th century. It represents multiple strands of creativity, both in architectural form and structural design, a great urban sculpture carefully set in a remarkable waterscape and a world-famous iconic building.”
The expert evaluation report to the World Heritage Committee stated: “…it stands by itself as one of the indisputable masterpieces of human creativity, not only in the 20th century but in the history of humankind.”
3. This is one of the busiest performing centre in the world
There is no day going without saying a huge crowd near the Opera House. whether it is raining, windy or sunny, there will always be a good crowd visiting the building. See the numbers:
- 8.2 million people visit the Opera House each year
- 300,000 take guided tour
- 3,000 shows each year with an average of 8 a day
4. There are four permanent residents at the Sydney Opera House
If you go for a show or just for a visit, there will be a high chance you will see the Opera Australia, The Australian Ballet, the Sydney Theatre Company and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. The concert hall grand organ is composed of 10,154 pipes and is the largest mechanical organ in the world. It took 10 years to build it.
5. The numbers are insane
As the Sydney.com Infographic states:
- The roof section weighs 15 tonnes or 230 kangaroos
- 15,000 light bulbs are changed annually
- There are more than 1 million roof tiles
- 350 km of tensioned steel cable is helding together the roof sections.
- 8 boeing 747 could sit wing to wing on the site.
- The cost of buiding the Opera skyrocketed to $102 million instead of the initial $7 million.
The Opera House is one of the most beautiful buildings in Sydney and no matter how many times you see it, it will never get old. Happy Birthday Sydney Opera House!