Sydney Opera House History

Sydney Opera House history is about as interesting as the history of Sydney itself. Planning for this famed attraction began back in the 1940s, though it wasn't until 1957 that work began. The new facility was effectively intended to replace the Sydney Town Hall, which was not large enough for large theatrical productions. For those who are interested in Sydney Opera House facts, it is interesting to note that the New South Wales government held a contest in 1956 to find a designer for the project. More than 200 design entries were received, and it was ultimately decided that a Danish architect by the name of Jorn Utzon was the winner.

Following along with Sydney Opera House history, it is worth noting that the designer never laid eyes on the finished project. Architect Jorn Utzon resigned and returned to his native Denmark in 1966, and the complex wasn't completed until 1973. The 1965 changing of the government had a lot to do with Utzon resigning. The new government declared that the Opera House project would be supervised by the Ministry of Public Works, which obviously didn't sit well with Utzon. This wasn't the end of Utzon's influence on things, however. In the late 1990s, the Sydney Opera House Trust went to work trying to mend the faltered relationship. In 1999, Utzon became a design consultant as appointed by the Trust. He then went on to lead a renovation project that is still continuing. On Sydney Opera House tours, you can learn more about the renovation project and get insight into a variety of other interesting things.

When it comes to interesting Sydney Opera House facts, the final cost in 1973 is as interesting as it gets. The project had an original budget of just $7 million. When it was completed in 1973, however, the total cost soared to $102 million. That's $92 million US dollars! That wasn't the end of the building's financial heavyweight status, however. Throughout the Sydney Opera House history, millions of dollars have been spent caring for the unique outer shells. Also worth noting when it comes to Sydney Opera House facts is the award that Jorn Utzon eventually won in 2003. This award was the Pritzker Prize, which is the highest honor in international architecture. Utzon died five years later, and he was honored by a state memorial service at the Sydney Opera House in 2009.

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