Happy 40th Birthday, Sydney Opera House

The iconic Sydney Opera House is celebrating its 40th anniversary on 20th October this year. And believe me if anyone knows how to throw a party, then it is Sydney and indeed Australia as a whole. That is why the party will go for the entire month of October, and it is an open invitation to all. There are many events planned to celebrate this occasion, including a visit by Prince Frederik and Princess Mary of Denmark, which is highly significant since the architect Jorn Utzon was Danish, and Princess Mary is Australian.

Sydney Opera House

The story behind the selection of Utzon as the architect itself is quite controversial. In this international competition, his design was initially put into the rejected pile by three of the judges but when the 4th judge arrived and rifled through the rejects, he saw Utzons entry and he was eventually awarded the honour of which we are all very grateful.

Unfortunately controversy seemed to follow Utzon. There were political and media problems and he resigned before the completion of the interior, which was handed to another group. The Sydney Opera House speaks for itself architecturally, but the interior was beset by problems, many of them acoustic ones. Eventually in 2002, he was asked to address the problems and his son travelled to Australia to oversee the renovations. Unfortunately Jorn Utzon passed away in 2008, but the problems appear to have been improved dramatically.

HM Queen Elizabeth 11 opened the Sydney Opera House on 20th October 1973, and this is the day that the “Cake and Song” spectacle will be on. This is open to everyone to come and enjoy the 40th birthday party.

On the 27th October, the 40th Anniversary Concert will be held, featuring many superb artists. The Concert will conclude with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, who celebrated their 80th birthday last year, performing the work that opened the Opera House in October 1973, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony.

There is a different performance or activity every day to celebrate this magnificent structure’s birthday.

Not only is the Sydney Opera House so stunning architecturally and set on Bennelong Point overlooking the magnificent harbor, but it is also a hugely significant cultural centre. In the words of John Butler, a musician, the Sydney Opera House is the Uluru of music venues.

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