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Band of three people performing at night in front of the Bennelong sails of the Opera House

Badu Gili LIVE

Free experience | Saturday nights 19 February  – 2 April*

Gather from sunset for a free outdoor event that will transform the Opera House’s Monumental Steps into a festival that celebrates First Nations music, art and food.

Each Saturday night from 19 February to 2 April*, First Nations performers transform the dramatic steps leading up to the iconic building into their stage, with the Badu Gili projections as their backdrop.

Artist line-up
Bow and Arrow • Stiff Gins • Tessa Thames

Top of the Monumental Steps | View Map

COVID-safe and event information

The health, safety and wellbeing of everyone at the Opera House is our priority. When you return to the Opera House, you will notice some important changes. Please follow our conditions of entry at all times:

  • Visitors aged 16 years and over entering the Opera House building are required to show that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (unless medically exempt) until at least 15 April, 2022. This includes visitors and patrons attending a performance or event, taking a tour, or visiting the box office, retail store, bar or restaurant operated within the building (Bennelong and Portside). Under 16s not fully vaccinated must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated adult. Visitor vaccination status after 15 April will be determined at a later date;
  • Face masks continue to be required for patrons aged 12 years and over while inside our foyers and theatres (unless lawfully exempt). We highly recommend children aged 11 years and younger wear a mask at all times;
  • As you move around the Opera House, practice physical distancing (1.5 metres whenever possible) and follow the guidance provided by our staff and signage.

Please check our Plan your visit page prior to attending the Opera House for the most up-to-date information.

Saturday nights from 19 February - 2 April *There will be no performance on 26 March due to previously scheduled events

19 February, 7.35pm & 8.27pm
Bow and Arrow

26 February, 7.35pm & 8.27pm - Due to wet weather, this performance will unfortunately no longer proceed as scheduled.
Bow and Arrow

5 March, 7.35pm & 8.27pm
Tessa Thames

12 March, 7.10pm & 7.57pm
Stiff Gins

19 March, 7.10pm & 7.57pm
Bow and Arrow

2 April, 7.10pm & 7.57pm
Tessa Thames

19 February, 26 February and 5 March
8.20pm - Badu Gili: Wonder Women
9.05pm - Badu Gili: Chapters 1, 2 and Wonder Women

12 March, 19 March and 2 April
7.50pm - Badu Gili: Wonder Women
8.35pm - Badu Gili: Chapters 1, 2 and Wonder Women

19 February, 26 February and 5 March
Open from 7.15pm

12 March, 19 March and 2 April
Open from 6.45pm 

Free experience

Make the most of your Opera House experience — arrive early to take a Tour or stay after sunset to enjoy a show or one of our many restaurants.

Suitable for all ages

Young people under the age of 15 must be accompanied at all times.

Celebration of music, art and food

Join us under the stars for live music performances from emerging First Nations artists Bow and Arrow, Stiff Gins and Tessa James each Saturday night from 19 February to 2 April*.

See the eastern Bennelong sails of the Opera House illuminated with our 2017, 2018 and 2021 animations depicting ancient and contemporary Aboriginal stories. Named Badu Gili, which means “water light” in Gadigal language, the installation brings First Nations stories and culture to life.

There’ll also be a pop-up bar by the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence (NCIE). Check out the details below.

Badu Gili LIVE is proudly funded by the NSW Government through the Culture Up Late initiative. 

Badu Gili has been enabled by the Opera House, its Idealist donors and the Australia Council for the Arts since 2017.

Discover the line-up

Bow and Arrow     19 February, 26 February and 19 March

Bow and Arrow are a Contemporary First Nations electro-soul trio (Wiradjuri / Gamilaraay / Dhudhuroa) operating out of Cammeraygal Country of the Eora Nation. Gathering a following through appearances on NITV, Bluesfest and a nationwide tour with The Sapphires, their debut EP ‘Return To Me’ is a flurry of creative expression made in one week, from composition to release. 

Stiff Gins 12 March

Stiff Gins combine stunning harmonies and wicked senses of humour to transport listeners to a world of joy, spirit and song. Their moniker is a reclamation of an offensive reference to Aboriginal women, a banner to guide their music in the direction of strength and pride. Three albums and countless breathtaking shows later, the name has become synonymous with musical excellence. Fresh off the stage from their epic visual theatre project Spirit of Things: Sound of Objects they are forging forward. In their twentieth year they soar into their most intriguing music making yet with a new recording and sound design project in the works. 

Tessa Thames 5 March and 2 April

Tessa Thames’ dad ran a karaoke business in the 90’s where she operated as a ‘warm up’ of sorts, taking the mic first with the hopes of encouraging others to follow suit. It was a delicate balancing act: being good enough to entertain whilst trying not to intimidate punters. Through this, Tessa cultivated her love of music and songwriting, absorbing her dearly held ‘Top Of The Pops’ 90’s nostalgia like a sponge. Now she’s squeezing it all out as something of her own.

Some may recognise her as the voice of folk act Microwave Jenny, having toured Australia, NZ, Asia, the UK and playing festivals such as Bluesfest (Byron Bay), Woodford Folk Festival (Woodford), Friendship Festival (Seoul) & The Aussie BBQ (UK). Her music has been featured on television series Gods of Wheat Street (ABC1), Redfern Now (SBS), Offspring (Network 10), Winners & Losers (Seven Network) and Underbelly Chopper (The Nine Network). Now Tessa Thames unleashes her modern 90’s nostalgic pop on the world without any concern for who might be intimidated.

Man in white shirt and black jacket is behind a bar and a handing a drink to another man wearing a black t-shirt

Meet us at the pop-up bar, in collaboration with NCIE

Excite your tastebuds at our pop-up bar run in collaboration with the National Centre for Indigenous Excellence (NCIE). Enjoy delicious indigenous-inspired food and flavours fresh from their kitchen in the heart of Redfern.

The National Centre of Indigenous Excellence is a not-for-profit social enterprise that aims to build capability and create opportunities with and for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across Australia.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you a COVID Safe business?

Yes. The Opera House is registered as a COVID Safe business with the NSW Government.  

What safety and hygiene measures are in place?

Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of everyone on site, and we are closely following NSW Health guidelines and advice. Our COVID-19 health and safety information is available on the Plan your visit page.

Do I need a ticket for this event?

No. When you arrive at the Opera House, make your way up the Monumental Steps to the Podium where you will enjoy the best view of the sunset projection. 

Can I take photos during the event?

Yes – we encourage everyone to capture this special experience. If you post on social media, please tag #BaduGili to share your photos or video with us.

What are the transport options to the Opera House?

You can catch public transport (bus, train, ferry) to Circular Quay and enjoy a 6 minute walk to the Opera House. If you’re getting dropped off in a car, head to the roundabout at the bottom of Macquarie Street where staff will direct you to a safe place to pull over.

Driving? Park in Wilson’s Car Park, you’re just minutes to your tour meeting point. Need a bit more info? Click here

What time do I need to arrive? 

It’s a great idea to arrive early, grab a drink and soak up the view.

Please note sunset varies each day so be sure to check sunset times on the day. 

What should I wear?

Badu Gili LIVE is an outdoor event. Please dress accordingly for the weather.

Where can I eat nearby?

There will be a pop-up bar at Badu Gili LIVE or you can enjoy one of the many restaurants and bars here at the Opera House. Our restaurants offer everything from casual snacks to award-winning fine dining. Find what you’re after, see our Restaurants

Can I take food and drink to the Podium?

Please check with our staff when you arrive. 

Will the building works at the Opera House affect this event?

You'll notice the Sydney Opera House has building works underway around the precinct. This will not impact your visit, it’s business as usual. For more information head to the Renewal pages.

Badu Gili LIVE is proudly funded by the NSW Government through the Culture Up Late initiative.

Proudly funded by

New South Wales Government

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Badu Gili: Wonder Women

Badu Gili - meaning 'water light' in the language of the traditional owners of Bennelong Point, the Gadigal people - is a free daily experience that explores First Nations stories in a spectacular six-minute projection on the Opera House’s eastern Bennelong sails.

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