Opera House Greening 2023
St. Patrick's Day - Friday 17th March
We're excited to announce the Sydney Opera House is turning Green on St. Patrick's Day this year and we'd like to thank Minister for Multiculturism, Mark Coure MP and the New South Wales Government for their support in this. We would also like to thank the Sydney Opera House for keeping this tradition alive as part of Ireland's Global Greening.
The Opera House Greening also takes place alongside our first Citizenship Ceremony for 2023 on Friday 17th March!
The first official greening began just about as far from the island of Ireland as it is possible to get, and no one could have wished for a more dramatic debut. on 17 March 2010, as onlookers lined the harbour and revellers raised their glasses in the historic Rocks area of Sydney, the spectacular white sails of the Sydney Opera House were illuminated in green.
The greening began as a challenge. Two hundred years beforehand, Lachlan Macquarie, newly appointed Governor of New South Wales, had declared 17 March a day of music and celebration for the (largely Irish) convict workers in Sydney.
Known for their innovation, Tourism Ireland Australia decided that the bicentenary was too auspicious to go uncelebrated. But how could they do justice to such a significant event? Turning one of the world's most famous and visually stunning buildings green in honour of Ireland's patron saint seemed the ideal solution.
Tourism Ireland CEO Niall Gibbons recalls his feelings when he saw the mock-up of the plan a few months before the big day: "At the height of the Credit Crunch, at what was such a difficult time for the world, I remember that something hit me on an emotional level, while visualising this. It seemed to me something that would have a huge impact."
And so it proved. The stunning images raced around the world, conveyed by social media, newspapers and television. The Global Greening was born.