Jorn Utzon (born April 10, 1918) is a Danish architect. He was born in Copenhagen as the son of a naval engineer, and grew up in Denmark. In 1957 he won the competition for a new opera house in Sydney, Australia. In the following years, Utzon gradually developed a way to construct the large shells that cover the two halls. He also had spectacular plans for the interior of these halls, but due to political changes, the newly elected state government of New South Wales suddenly stopped the payments to Utzon and he had to leave the country in 1966, leaving the unfinished project behind. He has never returned to Australia since. The Sydney Opera House was finally completed in 1973 and is one of the world's most recognizable buildings. In March 2003, Utzon was awarded an honorary doctorate for his work on the Opera House by the University of Sydney. Utzon's son accepted the award on his behalf as he himself was too ill to come to Australia. He is also now involved in redesigning the house, and in particular, the reception hall, following an agreement made in 2000.