A New Years Eve celebration has been suspended at the Opera House after a fight broke out between patrons and revellers.
Key points:The Opera House was closed on December 31 for the New Year and New Year Eve celebrationsThe NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal ruled that the theatre’s use of the word ‘New Year’ was discriminatoryThe theatre was temporarily closed after complaints of fighting in the venueOn the night of the New Years, revellers had to leave the building for the night due to the threat of a stampede.
When the fight broke, the Sydney Theatre Society decided to cancel the New York-themed fireworks, which were due to start at 7:00pm on New Years Day.
The NSW CAC ruled that because of the risk of a disturbance, the use of New Years day to mark the event was discriminatory.
“The conduct of the Opera Theatre society is a matter of great concern,” the tribunal found.
“This is the result of the society’s failure to provide sufficient warning to patrons of the potential for violence during the New YEAR celebrations.”
The tribunal also found that the behaviour of the organisers and staff was “particularly abhorrent”.
The NSW Theatre Owners and Operators Association (SOAO) welcomed the ruling, saying it was important for patrons to have a safe and enjoyable night out.
“As we have said before, we’re very disappointed with the decision, but it’s clear to us that it was right and we hope the tribunal takes into account the concerns of all of the parties involved,” SOAO chief executive Peter Macleod said.
“We hope that all parties can now come together and find a way to make New Year celebrations a more inclusive experience for everyone in the Sydney theatre community.”
A number of theatre organisations have also called for the cancellation of the celebrations.