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Sydney Opera House











Sydney Opera House: an annotated list of sources & services


Films and videorecordings
Online resources and CD ROMs

Films & videorecordings  

As frozen music. Sydney: Juniper Films, 1984. Produced and directed by Davy Tristram and James Wilson. Shows Sydney Opera House facilities and services; includes interviews with performers and excerpts from productions.  

Clouds: Jørn Utzon / a film by Pi Michael. [Denmark]: Fakta, 1994.

The eight wonder of the world.  Sydney: Cinesound Movietone Productions, 1973.  Devised and directed by William M. Carty. Includes the operation of the acoustic clouds in the Concert Hall, the revolve and stage lifts in the Opera Theatre, and the double revolve in the Drama Theatre; opening ceremonies.  

The edge of the possible: Jørn Utzon and the Sydney Opera House. Directed by Daryl Dellora. Produced by Sue Maslin, Written by Daryl Dellora and Ian Wansbrough. Australian Film Finance Corporation and Film Art Doco Productions, 1998.

The fifth façade / narrated by Sam Wannamaker and Jørn Utzon. Sydney: Film Australia, 1973. Producer Anthony Buckley; Director Donald Crombie. Includes old photographs of Bennelong Point and Farm Cove; old movie clips of the tram depot on Bennelong Point; rehearsals and performances for the opening of the Opera House.

Job No 1112: Sydney Opera House / NSW Government and Ove Arup and Partners; produced by Collings Productions. Sydney: Collings Productions, 1967. Deals with the construction problems, particularly of the shells,' arches and tiles. Composed mainly of black and white film taken during the construction of stages 1-2.

Landmark. Made by the Commonwealth Film Unit, this 11-minute film was produced in 1972 from historic and contemporary footage of the Sydney Opera House including footage of its complex construction and the site's previous use as a tram depot. It has a musical score but no narration. Posted to YouTube by the National Film and Sound Archive in 2013:

Making mural. Sydney: NSW Department of Education, 1985. Documentary about the 10th anniversary mural at the Opera House. Aimed at school children.

Monster or miracle?: Sydney Opera House. Sydney: Seven Network in association with Reg Grundy Enterprises. Directed by Bruce Beresford; devised and written by Pat Lovell.  History of the Opera House, with rehearsal and performance footage.

Not a job for boys / written and narrated by Brian Adams. Sydney: Australian Broadcasting corporation, 1973. The design, construction and painting of John Olsen's Opera House mural Salute to Five Bells.

Stroke of genius. Sydney: Network 10 Australia for the Sydney Opera House Trust, 1983. Produced and directed by Christopher Bartlett. An assessment of the Sydney Opera House from its beginnings to 1983. Includes interviews and production excerpts.

Sydney Soap Opera House. Produced by Uden Associates. Executive producer: Patrick Uden. 45 minutes. Screened on Artsworld Channel 5 [UK] 27 July 2001 Includes interviews with one of Jørn Utzon's sons and Sir Jack Zunz.

The Sydney Opera House: the building that nearly was. London: BBC, 1973.  Produced by Ken Cordon. History of the Sydney Opera House for the BBC television program, Omnibus. Includes archival footage, interviews and performances.

Online resources and CD ROMS


Guide to Utzon / Fleming Bo Andersen. Introduction by Jan Utzon. App available from Apple App Store, published 2012. Includes more than 2200 photos and 280 drawings of 56 competed projects by Jørn Utzon and 65 projects not completed, from around the world


Inside the House: the Sydney Opera House on CD ROM: a self guided tour. Sydney: Sydney Opera House Trust, 2000. 


The Opera House Project: the story of an Australian icon. An ABC Innovation and Sydney Opera House Trust Production. Writer and director Sam Doust. Narrator: Lucy Bell. Performance and events written and produced by Tim Bosanquet. Executive Producers, Gabrielle Shaw and Sam Doust. Published 2012 at


Stage Struck. Interactive CD-ROM inviting you to take the ultimate challenge - direct your own play, opera, musical or dance work.  Offers sections on dialogue, singing, music, movement, dance, stage design and other production tools and techniques.  Also provides a wealth of information on the performing arts in Australia. Produced by the National Institute of Dramatic Arts, Opera Australia, The Australian Ballet, Sydney Opera House and University of Wollongong as part of the Australian on CD program, created by the Australian Government, Stage Struck won a British Academy of Film and Television Arts award and Golden European Multimedia Award for interactivity in 1998. Copies may be ordered from the National Institute for Dramatic Art, phone (02) 9697 7647, fax 9662 7425.   



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