The Sydney Opera House Shines Gold For Diwali

Between 8pm & 11pm on October 24, the Sydney Opera House was lit up gold for Diwali.

The projection was done by The Electric Canvas, who have done them annually since 2015.

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet and Minister for Multiculturalism Mark Coure welcomed the lighting of the sails to officially mark the start of Diwali, which is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains.

By lighting up the sails of the Opera House, we are sharing in the rich colour, vibrancy and values of Diwali. Tonight also symbolises our unity as a multicultural state, that no matter our cultural background, our faith or the language we speak, Diwali can be enjoyed and experienced by everyone in NSW.

NSW Premier, Dominic Perrottet

Falling between October & November annually, Diwali, which means ‘row of lights’ and is predominately called a festival of lights globally, is held on the last day of the month of Kartika in the Hindu, Nepali, Bengali & Indian National calendars. It is celebrated by lighting diyas (small oil lamps) which symbolise spiritual darkness’s lifting and life’s renewal. It is also considered a time to pray for health, knowledge and peace.

Mr Coure said celebrating events like Diwali is about celebrating NSW’s greatest assets, its people. 

Thanks to our rich diversity, we have the opportunity to join in celebrations right here at home that you would otherwise have to travel overseas to experience. For generations, the contributions of our Indian, Bangladeshi, Nepalese and South East Asian communities have been woven into the social fabric of our state, and by celebrating their culture tonight we are also celebrating their contributions to making NSW a multicultural and multifaith success story.

Minister for Multiculturalism, Mark Coure

Multicultural NSW Advisory Board chair Nick Kaldas encouraged all residents to enjoy the festivities during Diwali.

Cultural festivals like Diwali give us all a window into the contributions that diverse communities make to the rich cultural mosaic of NSW

Multicultural NSW Advisory Board chair, Nick Kaldas

As part of the Spectacular, a private function hosted by the Minister for Multiculturalism and co-organised by Multicultural NSW & SBS was held on the rooftop of the Museum of Contemporary Art, accompanied by speeches. The sails were lit up by the Minister for Multiculturalism. The BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir distributed packets of sweets for all guests during the function and did a performance of Shantipath prior to the lighting of the sails.

The performance of ‘Shantipath’ at the private function before the lighting of the sails.
Photograph: Multicultural NSW
Volunteers from BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir pose with the sweet packages. 
Photograph & Caption: Special Broadcasting Service

Attended include the Vice-President of the Executive Council (Damien Tudehope MLC), Minister for Digital/Customer Service (Victor Dominello MP), the Consul-General of India in Sydney (Manish Gupta), the Chief Executive of Multicultural NSW (Joseph La Posta), members of Multicultural NSW Advisory Board, the New South Wales Chapter President of the Australia-India Business Council (Irfan Mali) and members of the Indian community in Australia among others. Other people who attended are quoted below:

As an Indian, this a proud moment for me to witness this lighting up. I am overwhelmed

Prakash Belawadi, actor

The lighting up of the Sydney Opera House brings together the Indian diaspora in Australia

Convener of Hindi Schools in Sydney, Mala Mehta OAM

The government has realized the strength of the Indian community. This Diwali, we celebrate this strength too.

International Chair of the Australia-India Business Council, Jodi McKay

This lighting up of the Opera House is the symbol of the true message of Diwali and Bandi Chhor Diwas – the message of light and hope

Harman Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Harinder Kaur

Premier Dominic Perrottet did not attend the event due to floods in New South Wales.

The Sydney Opera House Diwali Spectacular is held annually, meaning the next edition should be held on 12th November 2023.


Media Releases | Multicultural NSW

‘Opera Sails are lit up for Diwali to convey that all communities are welcome in NSW’ | SBS Hindi (Contains a 11-minute podcast episode in Hindi)

‘Diwali 2022’ Photo Album – Multicultural NSW – Facebook