Leonard Joel

Opera Australia’s Costume & Memorabilia Auction

Single Owner Auctions 14 Dec 2016


435a5065To celebrate its 60th Anniversary Opera Australia announced that it has assembled a collection of more than 2,000 items, including a selection of costumes, accessories, artworks and memorabilia from its rich cultural history to go under the hammer next June.

This is the first time Opera Australia has opened the vaults to give the public an opportunity to own a piece of Australia’s artistic heritage. Opera Australia CEO Craig Hassall explained the motivation behind the historic move.

“Over the past sixty years Opera Australia has amassed an incredible collection of costumes and props, many that are now well overdue for retirement but are far more deserving than remaining in storage boxes, never to see the light of day.

“We know that collectors, not only from Australia but all around the world, would be thrilled to acquire some of these rare gems so we thought it was time to share the collection with those who’ll value them as much as we do”, he said.

Meticulously hand-crafted by teams of artisans over the years, custom-designed pieces from OA’s expansive wardrobe are expected to be the most sought after items. All individually designed for their specific productions, each piece will  be labelled with its providence, the name of the opera and the performer it was made for.

Marquee items include the Armida dress worn by Yvonne Kenny in OA’s 1999 production of Rinaldo. For the week leading up to the auction the display will be open to the public, giving thousands of opera fans, who have adored the performances over the years the opportunity to get up close to the costumes worn by their idols.

The display and auction will take place at Opera Australia’s headquarters in Sydney’s Surry Hills where most of the items were painstakingly created over the years. The auction will be held on Friday 30 June and Saturday 1 July 2017 with bidding also available via telephone and online. Public viewing from Saturday 24 June.

Read: Opera Australia to auction historic costumes | Michaela Boland for The Australian | 31 December 2016

Robert Williams | National Head of Single-Owner Collections & Sydney Office
02 9362 9045 | 0403 142 106 | robert.williams@leonardjoel.com.au

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