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La Traviata — Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

Verdi's famed Italian opera — and its nine-metre-high chandelier — is coming to Sydney Harbour's floating stage.
By Libby Curran
December 10, 2020
By Libby Curran
December 10, 2020

in partnership with


Opera on a regular stage is one thing, but opera performed on a floating openair theatre atop Sydney Harbour, under the stars? Well, that's some unforgettable stuff. Especially when it's Giuseppe Verdi's famed classic La Traviata that's being given the overwater treatment.

The glamorous three-act show is the latest production announced as part of Opera Australia's Handa Opera series, supported by the folks at Destination NSW. It was set to pop up on the harbour in March 2020, but, because of COVID-19, it was postponed. Now, it has been announced that the show will (finally) go on in March 2021.

Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour has pulled over 400,000 guests since debuting with La Traviata back in 2012, its mix of drinking and dining options, breathtaking views and nightly fireworks making it one of Sydney's must-try cultural offerings. It's also considered one of the world's best openair opera venues.

The upcoming season will see director Constantine Costi heading up a bold new production of La Traviata based on celebrated director Francesca Zambello's original. It tells the famously heartbreaking tale of a free-spirited Parisian courtesan and her tragic love affair with a nobleman.

Prudence Upton

Expect to be wowed by a glittering nine-metre-high chandelier decked out with 10,000 crystals on stage, while world-class performers — with up to 70 on stage in ensemble scenes — deliver soaring renditions of legendary tunes like 'Sempre Libera' and 'Brindisi'.

As you'll be hitting up such a world-class event, why not make a night of it? Make sure you arrive early to enjoy the Italian-themed pop-up food and drink stalls for a pre-theatre snack. And, for those looking to make the affair even more luxe, book in for a staycation by the harbour.

Of course, Opera Australia's La Traviata will be a COVID-safe event, following all NSW Government health guidelines and procedures.

Top image: Hamilton Lund

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