The Sydney Opera House is an architectural wonder, but soaring construction costs meant the performance spaces were always severely compromised. Now, nearly 50 years after it first opened, the Concert Hall has been overhauled so that the interior can match the glory of the exterior. Hugh Robertson reports.

Sydney Opera House
The new tunnel running from the Eastern Staircase to the Northern Foyer, built as part of the major renovation of the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall. Photo © Anna Kucera

There are few construction projects more famously fraught than the Sydney Opera House. An almost-impossible design, construction forced to begin before plans were even drawn up, a conservative, corrupt state government, the sacking of its architect who, heartbroken, left Australia and never saw...