The Sydney Opera House located in Sydney, Australia is a multi-venue performing arts centre that has become a key landmark for the city and country down under. The facility is situated on Bennelong Point in Sydney Harbour, near the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and adjacent to the business district in central Sydney.
The Opera House was the brainchild of Danish design architect, Jorn Utzon, who won with this design in a 1957 international design competition. The project was approved by the New South Wales Government and authorized to begin construction in 1958, with architect Jorn Utzon leading the construction. The building of the Opera House has often been overshadowed by cost overruns, long delays, and eventually the resignation of the architect.
The project comprised multiple performance venues, though the name suggests a single venue, making it one of the busiest performing arts centre in the world, with more than 1.2 million patrons watching more than 1,500 performances every year. The venues have been home many in-house productions, while supporting four major performing arts companies, including: the Sydney Symphony Orchestra; The Australian Ballet; Opera Australia; and the Sydney Theatre Company. More than 7 million visitors come to the Sydney Opera House every year, making it the most popular tourist attraction in the country. Nearly 300,000 of these visitors every year participate in a guided tour of the facility.
The Sydney Opera House was deemed a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007. Managed by the Sydney Opera House Trust, under the auspices of the New South Wales Ministry of the Arts, the facility has been identified as one of the most distinctive buildings of the 20th century and is probably the most famous performance arts centre in the world.