Indigenous Work Experience Program
In line with the Sydney Opera House Reconciliation Action Plan
our first Indigenous Work Experience Program was launched in August 2011. The program is now about to embark on its fourth instalment, which will see students from years 9-10 participate in a vocational learning program designed to expose them to a variety of roles and departments across the House, over four days.
This initiative aims to provide Indigenous students with a broad insight into Sydney Opera House as an organisation; including our environment, customers, teams, culture and philosophy. The program also gives students an understanding of the theatre and entertainment industry, as well as its networks – demonstrating future learning and employment opportunities.
The interactive approach exposes students to a variety of roles and departments across the organisation including:
• Stage management and production
• Sound/AV and lighting technicians
• Customer Service and Box Office
• Commercial Development and Tourism
• Resident companies
As part of this, students are also given the opportunity to explore our venue spaces, such as the Concert Hall, Joan Sutherland Theatre, Utzon Room and Drama Theatre, as well as be exposed to rehearsals and performances presented by Sydney Opera House Presents and some of our resident companies, including the Sydney Symphony, Opera Australia and Bangarra Dance Theatre.
Taking part in the organisations activities, group discussions and day-to-day workings, the Indigenous Work Experience Program enables students to:
• Become familiar with the organisation and have the ability to find their way around the site
• Be aware of the activities, and the diverse range of jobs required to keep a busy 24/7 performing
arts centre in operation
• Experience a range of positions and identify the specific skills they have learnt, and the
transferable skills they can take to any job
• Identify other arts organisations where they can gain further knowledge and experience
To date, the participants have come from Newtown High School of Performing Arts, Dulwich High School of Visuals Arts and Design and Georges River College. The Aboriginal Education Unit (DET) assists Sydney Opera House to identify suitable students for the program; who have a career interest in the Arts and have displayed particular talent and commitment in this area. The Unit has advised overwhelming interest in the program, but unfortunately Sydney Opera House can only subsidise the costs of so many students per year.
We hope to extend the program even further, to more students, as well as expand on the opportunities for these students by providing greater pathways for more in-depth vocational learning and training. But at a cost of approximately $100 per child, we rely on the generosity of individuals to help us do so.
Please consider making a gift that could have a lasting impact on an Indigenous student by helping them to develop their potential through our Indigenous Work Experience Program.
Every gift makes a difference.
With your help, we’re doing more.