Talks & Ideas
Ideas to challenge, inform and inspire
Sydney Opera House's year-round Talks & Ideas program has featured appearances by some of the biggest names in current affairs and contemporary culture. Speakers range from canonical novelist and essayist Zadie Smith to New York Times bestselling author Michael Pollan, artist Ai Weiwei, Grand Designs host Kevin McCloud, celebrity food writers Nigella Lawson and Yotam Ottolenghi, philosopher Alain de Botton and scientist Stephen Hawking, among many others.
In addition to year-round events tackling the big questions of our time, the Sydney Opera House Talks & Ideas program features annual festivals All About Women, Antidote and its own successful podcast series Ideas at the House.
Antidote is a festival of ideas, action and change.
Antidote includes a lineup of talks, workshops, visual arts and immersive experiences invites leading thinkers and makers to consider the world’s big problems, and possible solutions.
Past guests include journalist Ronan Farrow, activist Chelsea Manning, The New Yorker writers Jill Lepore and Elizabeth Kolbert, author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates, novelist Kiley Reid, singer/activist Denise Ho, poet and author Cathy Park Hong, broadcaster and author Afua Hirsch and economist and politician Yanis Varoufakis.
Antidote – A festival of ideas, art and change
Antidote is a festival of ideas, art and change with a line-up of unmissable thinkers, artists and provocateurs.
all about women
Sydney Opera House's All About Women celebrates extraordinary artists, thinkers and storytellers, and poses vital questions about gender, justice and equality.
All About Women
All About Women is a vibrant annual festival that asks questions about gender, justice and equality.
The festival began in 2013 with the aim of looking for ways to bring more women of ideas into public conversations. This has only become more important since then, as the movement has expanded to include the latest thinking on intersectionality, #metoo, politics and climate justice.
Past guests include prolific writer Isabel Allende, authors Caitlin Moran and Chanel Miller, former Chief of Staff to Michelle Obama, Tina Tchen and humorist Fran Lebowitz.
Chip Rolley, Head of Talks & Ideas
Chip Rolley joined the Sydney Opera House as Head of Talks & Ideas in September 2021.
Rolley has curated festivals in Sydney and New York City, first as artistic director of Sydney Writers’ Festival, and most recently in New York as director of PEN America’s World Voices Festival, one of America’s most diverse writers’ festivals. He also oversaw the prestigious PEN Literary Awards and a slate of literary programs that engaged traditionally under-served participants and audiences.
He has edited the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s opinion and news analysis website, The Drum. His writing has covered a very wide range of subjects from politics to poetry, with a particular focus on literature and Chinese politics and culture. His writing has appeared in The Guardian (US), Wall Street Journal, Griffith Review, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Australian, The Bulletin, Vogue, Rolling Stone and he has translated essays and poetry from Chinese to English.
ANTIDOTE Queerstories Comes Back Out
Confessions, obsessions, love, loss and fierce resistance – you never know what will happen next at Sydney's legendary LGBTQI+ storytelling event. Hosted by Maeve Marsden.
All About Women: Caitlin Moran - More Than a Woman
Ten years since Caitlin Moran's blockbuster memoir How To Be A Woman, she's juggling ageing parents, teenage daughters, and a bigger bum. How is one of our best-loved feminists finding her forties?
Yotam Ottolenghi | Keeping Cooking Simple
It’s hard to remember what we used to cook before Yotam Ottolenghi burst into our culinary consciousness. From his introduction of bold new flavours and ingredients, to his consistent foregrounding of vegetables in his meals, Ottolenghi’s books continue to excite and inspire food-lovers everywhere.
All About Women
Beyond ‘exploitation’ and ‘empowerment’ in sex work
All About Women's Tilly Lawless on rejecting the common preconceptions of her work.
Becoming the “poster girl for press freedom”
In June 2018, federal police entered journalist Annika Smethurst's house. She looks back on that fateful morning
Sydney Opera House: A Grand Design
Go behind the scenes of legendary TV designer Kevin McCloud's Opera House visit
Ideas at the House
Talks and conversations from the Sydney Opera House featuring the world’s greatest minds and culture creators. Hosted by Edwina Throsby.
11 September 2022
How Do You Solve a Problem Like the Media?
Barrie Cassidy, Osman Faruqi & Janine Perrett, hosted by Maddison Connaughton
The media has gone through a huge upheaval in recent decades. Now, we're starting to see the effects: clickbait-driven headlines, rampant sensationalism and spin replacing news. So what can we do about it? Join Barrie Cassidy, Osman Faruqi & Janine Perrett at Antidote 2022 to find out.
The legendary pop pioneer Jarvis Cocker opened his attic crawl space where he hoarded objects for 20 years. He tells us what he found there and how the things we keep hidden say more about us than those we put on display.
The body is the arena where power and politicised control play out. Join Olivia Laing as she examines how bodies encounter oppression and resistance, and reshape the world.