A Cheap Concert Ticket for Students
So guard that student card like gold.
Online Concert Tickets
Most shows at the Opera House offer student rush tickets.
Some, like the Australian Chamber Orchestra (ACO), let you buy rush concert tickets online. Full time students simply add STUDENT to the promo code when booking to access prices as low as AUD$20 a ticket.
These online tickets can be picked up from the box office one hour prior to the performance. That’s when you’ll need to show your valid student ID.
Others, such as the Sydney Symphony Orchestra (SSO), will sell you rush concert tickets for as low as AUD$15 if you complete their online form first.
That makes you eligible to receive your discount concert tickets offers by email.
If that’s too difficult you can buy cheap concert tickets on the day for a little more, starting at AUD$25.
There are other regular Opera House performers offering a last minute ticket for students.
They include the Sydney Dance Company, the Australian Ballet, Bell Shakespeare, the Sydney Theatre Company and, of course, Opera Australia.
You need a separate student ID for each ticket you buy.
Really Cheap Concert Tickets
Sydney has quite a bit of classical chamber music with last minute rush concert tickets for cheap prices for students.
The Australia Ensemble plays a subscription series in the Sir John Clancy Auditorium at the University of New South Wales and students can pick up rush tickets for AUD$17 from 45 minutes before the performance.
City Recital Hall concerts by the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra (on period instruments) and the Australian String Quartet also have student rush concert tickets.
Then there are world-famous stars who come to Australia under the auspices of Musica Viva. You’ll recognise the names.
Whether it’s the Sydney Opera House, the City Recital Hall at Angel Place (fantastic acoustics and an intimate setting) or another of the venues around the city, get there an hour or so before the start (longer for internationally known performers). Rush concert tickets usually go on sale between an hour and half an hour prior.
And if you love classical music listen to completely free concerts.
Rush Concert Tickets for Shows
So you’ve been to the Sydney Opera House, what about other fun cheap things to do? Any rush tickets to bring down the price of hot shows?
Yes, you can join the concert crowd at popular shows in Sydney. A good place to start is the Theatre Royal in the MLC Centre, King Street. It regularly has hit musicals running.
You won’t get a rush ticket every day, but you’ll often get a cheap last minute ticket on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday (from the Box Office only). Expect to pay around AUD$40. Tickets go on sale two hours prior to the performance.
Of course there may not be any tickets left. But in my experience there will almost always be a few unsold seats. The real key is whether there’s a huge queue ahead of you. It pays to pick less busy days (early in the week and, sometimes, Sunday) and to be there early.
You won’t stand much of a chance with your student card at special events like the Festival of Sydney in January. Your best bet there is to get the released-on-the-day discount tickets from the Festival Village in Hyde Park.
Theatre in Sydney
Lots of choice here. There’s everything from the classics to revues. Take your pick.
Belvoir is one of the stalwarts of Sydney theatre. Upstairs for the more formal program, Downstairs for free-ranging mayhem. Suitably scruffy, often avant-garde, sometimes risky, it can take theatre out of your comfort zone.
Student rush tickets tend to be limited to certain days, often Tuesdays at 1830 (6.30pm) and the 1400 (2pm) Saturday performance.
Rush tickets (under AUD$30) go on sale at 1000 (10am) on the day.
Ordinary student concession prices (under AUD$40) are available for all shows.
The Seymour Centre, on the campus of Sydney University, can be a bit hit or miss. Look carefully at what’s offered and then flip a coin. When it’s good it’s very very good and when it’s bad . . .
Student tickets go for around AUD$15 from one hour prior to the performance.
The Sydney Theatre Company (STC) is probably Sydney’s highest profile theatre group, with performances in multiple venues.
My favourite STC performance space is The Wharf – one of the old finger wharves jutting into Sydney harbour.
For many years it was the main performance space for the STC.
If you go there for the show, there’s a bar and restaurant jutting out over the harbour right on the end of the wharf for pre and post-theatre food and drinks.
Their rush concert tickets vary with the show and the venue. Often Mondays, sometimes every day, it’s best to check out the one you’re most interested in.
Smaller independent theatres, like the Stables theatre in Kings Cross, sometimes offer ‘pay-what-you-can’ performances as well as rush tickets. And standard student prices at the smaller theatres – eg New Theatre in Newtown – are under $20, and usually less than full price movie tickets.
More Cheap Sydney Things to Do
Don’t feel like theatre tonight? Can’t face queuing for rush concert tickets at another deadly serious classical music concert?
Don’t overlook all the fun cheap things to do that you don’t need a student card for.
Cinemas in Sydney all have discount days where tickets are reduced.
For the mainstream movie houses it’s Tuesdays, arthouse cinemas tend to have cheap Mondays and some independents offer both.
Cinemas such as the Randwick Ritz offer permanently discounted movie tickets.
And Govinda’s restaurant and movie room, 112 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst, offers a vegetarian meal plus movie (lounge on cushions) for very reasonable prices.
Then there are quite a few pubs and clubs with DJs or live music and no cover charge. Just keep an eye out.
Don’t Forget the Fringe
Don’t forget the Sydney Fringe Festival in September for a plethora of very cheap shows across all genres. It goes all month and it’s great for discovering new or experimental work. There’s always good music too, often including an outdoor concert.