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The House : The Dramatic Story of the Sydney Opera House and the People Who Made It - Helen Pitt

The House

The Dramatic Story of the Sydney Opera House and the People Who Made It

Paperback Published: 17th August 2018
ISBN: 9781760295462
Number Of Pages: 432

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Winner of the 2018 Walkley Book Award

The extraordinary story of the 20th century's most recognisable building, with new insights into the people involved and the controversy that surrounded its construction.

The best-loved building in Australia nearly didn't get off the drawing board. When it did, the lives of everyone involved in its construction were utterly changed: some for the better, many for the worse.

Helen Pitt tells the stories of the people behind the magnificent white sails of the Sydney Opera House. From the famous conductor and state premier who conceived the project; to the two architects whose lives were so tragically intertwined; to the workers and engineers; to the people of Sydney, who were alternately beguiled and horrified as the drama unfolded over two decades.

With access to diaries, letters, and classified records, as well as her own interviews with people involved in the project, Helen Pitt reveals the intimate back story of the building that turned Sydney into an international city. It is a tale worthy of Shakespeare himself.

About the Author

Helen Pitt is a Sydney Morning Herald journalist who has worked as the opinion and letters editor at Australia's oldest daily metropolitan newspaper where she began her career in 1986. She has worked as a writer for The Bulletin magazine, in California for New York Times Digital, and as a television reporter at Euronews in France. Her feature writing has won the Austcare Media award and been highly commended in the UN Media Peace prize.

Would recommend


Recommended to me avid readers.



The Building that Shook the World


Helen Pitt's book is a rich, sensitive, impartial and ultimately deeply satisfying narrative of the epic human drama behind the creation of the Sydney Opera House.




4.5 2


1. A phone call from half a world away

2. The young Jorn

3. Scandi-style

4. The mastermind

5. The ordinary Joe, who gave Sydney its Opera House

6. The magnificent lonely idea

7. Sex magic and the maestro

8. Gentlemen, here is your Opera House

9. And the winner is ...

10. Poetry or pastry?

11. Bennelong pointers

12. Kiss and sell

13. With a little bit of bloomin' luck

14. A mini Greek tragedy

15. Rising up like Aztec gods

16. The spherical solution

17. End of the bromance

18. The arch that changed the world

19. Plain sailing

20. Millions and mullions

21. High noon at the chief secretary's office

22. I am still available

23. This chapter is over

24. Malice in Blunderland

25. SOS to London

26. New man at the Opera House

27. Autopsy on a dream

28. Hall's balls

29. Not a job for boys

30. Opening daze

31. Reconciliation



ISBN: 9781760295462
ISBN-10: 1760295469
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 432
Published: 17th August 2018
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3  x 3.3
Weight (kg): 0.53