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Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour - Carmen 

Carmen stamps her feet, tosses her hair and draws you into her world. Men fall instantly under her spell, and once you’ve heard her sultry Habanera, you’ll fall for opera’s favourite femme fatale, too.

At Fleet Steps, Mrs Macquarie's Point. | View Seat Map

“It’s the perfect potion – the glitzy visuals and hyperactive energy of a Broadway musical mixed with world-class opera.”
Time Out

Australia’s iconic outdoor opera

Take a harbourside setting with an unrivalled view of the famous Sydney skyline. Build a pop-up opera house, complete with bars, restaurants and tiered seating. Add a monumental set, colourful, eye-catching costumes, spectacular dance and an explosion of fireworks, and you’ve got a night like no other.

This is Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour: the cultural event of the year. At sunset, gather with friends over a glass of something sparkling and a sumptuous Spanish meal before settling back to enjoy our vivacious, vivid production of Bizet’s Carmen as dusk settles over the harbour.

Powerful voices sing those famous Spanish tunes, filling the night air with Spanish rhythms and fiery passion. Soldiers patrol, factory girls seduce shamelessly, glittering bullfighters parade and dancers pirouette their way across the stage as the captivating Carmen walks fearlessly towards a fate written in the cards.

Presented by Opera Australia

The Platinum Club - Carmen On Sydney Harbour
This is pop-up dining at its best: exclusive gourmet menus, table waiters, Tyrrell's wines and dedicated restrooms.


Conductor – Brian Castles-Onion
Director – Gale Edwards
Revival Director – Andy Morton
Assistant Director – Trent Kidd
Set Designer – Brian Thomson
Costume Designer – Julie Lynch
Lighting Designer – John Rayment
Sound Designer – Tony David Cray
Choreographer – Kelley Abbey
Fight Choreographer – Nigel Poulton


Carmen – Josè Maria Lo Monaco *, Sian Pendry †
Don José – Andeka Gorrotxategi *, Arnold Rutkowski †
Escamillo – Luke Gabbedy *, Michael Honeyman †
Micaëla – Natalie Aroyan *, Stacey Alleaume†
Frasquita – Jane Ede
Mercédès – Margaret Trubiano
Remendado – Nicholas Jones
Dancairo – Christopher Hillier
Zuniga – Adrian Tamburini
Moralès – Simon Meadows

With Opera Australia Chorus, Opera Australia Orchestra

* 24, 26, 29, 31 March; 2, 5, 7, 9, 12, 15, 18, 20, 22 April
† 25, 28, 30 March; 1, 4, 6, 8, 11, 13, 16, 19, 21, 23 April

What if it rains?

Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour is an open-air and all-weather event

The venue, audience seating, and the stage are completely uncovered. The event is an all-weather experience and Opera Australia is committed to going ahead with a performance of Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour even in doubtful or unfavourable weather conditions. Please come prepared so that you are as comfortable as possible, and ready to support the performers, who will carry on singing in the rain.

Bring warm and waterproof clothing

Sydney weather is full of surprises so we recommend that you dress with this in mind and bring warm, weatherproof clothing. Please note that although umbrellas can be brought to the venue, out of consideration for other members of the audience they cannot be used during the performance.

Performance pauses and cancellations

We will only cancel a performance during electrical storms (within 10km radius) or during times of extremely high winds and/or rain. The decision to cancel a performance is not made until 7.30pm or later and a cancellation may be called during the performance.  So please plan to travel to the venue for a 7.30pm performance start time even in unfavourable weather conditions.

In some weather conditions Carmen may have a delayed start time or be paused for up to 50 minutes at any point throughout the performance.

Auxiliary expenses including travel, accommodation or hospitality which you have arranged in conjunction with the performance are at your own risk and not refundable by Opera Australia.

Carmen: Cheat Sheet
Everything you need to know about Bizet's Carmen, one of opera's greatest hits.

Frequently Asked Questions

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