Arts & Entertainment


If this month’s closure of the much loved Sydney monorail wasn’t bad enough, now comes the news that Danish royalty will be invited to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Sydney Opera House. We’ve got nothing personal against Princess Mary and Prince ‘Fred’, but once again homegrown Australian royalty has been sadly overlooked.

The tenuous connection between the Danish Royals and the Sydney Opera House is that it was designed by a Danish architect Jørn Utzon and thank God he wasn’t Italian. Otherwise the State Government might have invited Silvio Berlusconi to throw a Bunga Bunga party in the Concert Hall to celebrate the anniversary.

Once again it’s the cultural cringe run riot that sees imported royalty on hand to fill the pages of the tabloid press and the Women’s Weekly. Princess Mary might have been born in Tassie but she’s a Danish citizen these days and part of a family of European royalty that has long outlived its use by date.

Whilst it’s the 40th anniversary of the Opera House it’s also the 43rd anniversary of our own unique Hutt River Principality in WA and its ebullient, charismatic leader Prince Leonard along with his charming but sadly ailing wife Princess Shirley. Technically the good Prince has seceded from the Commonwealth but his Hutt River compound welcomes all and sundry and most Australians now regard him as Aussie as a meat pie.

Whilst not acknowledged by Australian Post, the Prince has made an outstanding contribution to philately over the years, releasing numerous sets of commemorative stamps, eagerly sought after by collectors all over the world. Through his Royal College of Advanced Research he has also conducted major studies into “Natures Universal Law of Construction” and the relationship between the Micro Energy/Force to the Macro Constructions.

Unlike the British and Danish royals who are waited upon hand and foot and enjoy a lifestyle of enormous privilege HRH Prince Leonard is a roll up your sleeves, DIY, man of the people, whether it’s flogging stamps or issuing passports at the official Hutt River office or clearing tables at the world famous tearooms.

These days our obsession with celebrity, movie stars, rock stars and the Kardashians, has been expanded to embrace royalty. Their historical and political relevance has long been superseded by our interest in who’s rooting who and who’s wearing what. With Leonard and Shirley, you get none of that tabloid tack – only hard working folks trying to make a Hutt River dollar (the official currency of the Principality).

The Opera House and the State Government should take note. It’s not too late to can the boring Danish duo and invite our own celebrated Royal couple to do the honours and cut the commemorative cake. There is still some conjecture as to what will happen to the Monorail carriages after they are pulled down later this year and what better way to lure the reclusive Prince Leonard to Sydney than to donate them to Hutt River where they would make perfect backpacker accommodation.

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