Celebrations at the Sydney Opera House

Celebrations at the Sydney Opera House

The Sydney Opera House in Australia celebrates its 40th birthday By: Jim Calio
The Sydney Opera House was designed by Danish architect Jorn Utzon. // © 2013 Thinkstock
The Sydney Opera House was designed by Danish architect Jorn Utzon. // © 2013 Thinkstock

The Details

Sydney Opera House
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Major League Baseball Opening Series Sydney Australia
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This month, Sydney, Australia, celebrates the 40th birthday of its famous opera house with a weeklong celebration beginning on Oct. 20. The Sydney Symphony will play Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 at the official 40th anniversary concert on Oct. 27, the same piece that was played at the official opening in 1973.

The Opera House was designed by Danish architect Jorn Utzon, who was virtually unknown until he won a contest to design the building in 1957.The building’s design, which some liken to a ship’s sails, is credited to Utzon’s early exposure to maritime architecture, as well as his own fondness for sailing in his native Denmark.

To reinforce the ties between Australia and Denmark, the Crown Prince and Princess of Denmark will attend the official 40th anniversary concert as patrons of the celebration, according to Sandra Chipchase, CEO of Destination NSW, one of the main organizers of the events.

“We want to underline the enduring links between the two countries,” Chipchase said.

Major League Baseball Comes to Australia

In other news for Sydney, Major League Baseball (MLB) comes to the city next year.

Sandra Chipchase was instrumental in getting Major League Baseball to play two early season games in Sydney, on March 22 and 23. The event will be counted as real games, marking only the sixth time MLB games have been played outside the U.S.

Chipchase predicts that the games, to be played at the 45,000-seat Sydney Cricket Ground stadium, will bring in about $13 million to the local economy.

“The grass for the outfield is currently being farmed in western New South Wales,” she says. It will be installed in February to comply with MLB regulations.”

Both games will be broadcast back to the U.S. on Fox and on Australian television.

Packages can be purchased online for the 2014 MLB games in Australia.

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