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Sydney Opera House

Re-branding an icon

Brand and Communications

Sydney Opera House needed to leverage its high profile more effectively across all aspects of its business, and find a central proposition that could drive both the internal culture and brand communications.

I recall our Trust Chairman commenting that this was the best brand strategy work he had ever seen. In addition to a redesigned logo and design system, Frost* Collective tabled a brand campaign that has brought tremendous energy and breadth to the positioning of Sydney Opera House.
Naomi Grabel,
Former Director Marketing and Development,
Sydney Opera House

Part of the performance

Following extensive research into the Opera House vision, markets and stakeholders, we developed a new brand position – ‘live performance every day’. The brand idea is designed to reengage the Opera House with its many audiences, replacing clichéd perceptions of the building with that of an alive and relevant destination.

A new identity

With so many people using images of the Opera House, creating ownership of the name was essential. We used larger, emblematic typography to represent the monumental steps at the entrance to the building, as well as the idea of a musical crescendo, and introduced a palette of bright, primary colours. In the spirit of performance, the sails themselves perform, containing words such as ‘live’ and ‘love’, which capture the Opera House experience.

This new graphic and identity system unified the Opera House’s communications while still providing enough flexibility for individual products and programs to have their own personality.

This is your house

We produced several print campaigns: ‘See Inside’, which used daring architectural photography to capture the unique angles and unseen interior spaces of the House; ‘Adventures’, which featured renowned illustrator Josie Jammet’s work to capture season highlights; and ‘we love to perform’, which turned the spotlight on Opera House staff ‘performing’ – janitors became jazz singers, tour guides became dancers and ushers became ballerinas, conveying the universal message that once you’re inside, everyone’s a part of the performance.

We wanted to tell people that stuff’s happening inside, so we coloured in the city with campaign banners, to try and change perceptions and make the Opera House a place for everyone.
Ant Donovan,
Creative Director, Frost* collective
Working with the Frost team on the Sydney Opera House rebrand was a collaboration of passionate people. We set the highest standards and worked day and night to meet them. The result was simple yet clever, capturing the essences of an Australian icon.
Johannes Weissenbeck, Play Communications