Sir Eugene Goossens (1893 - 1962)
Goossens came from a distinguished musical family. His siblings were oboist Leon, harpists Sidonie & Marie, and horn-player Adolph. After training as a violinist, he switched to conducting, founding his own orchestra in 1921, and giving the British concert premiere of Igor Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring on 7 June of that year in the composer's presence.
In 1923 he was appointed conductor of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, moving to Cincinnati in 1931 in succession to Fritz Reiner. In 1947 he moved to Australia as conductor of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and director of the New South Wales State Conservatorium of Music. In March 1956 he was forced to resign following revelations about his private life, and returned to England. Although he held no further posts, he was engaged by the BBC for concerts, and recorded both for EMI & Everest Records.
He persuaded the New South Wales Government to commission a music venue overlooking Sydney Harbour, a project that eventually became the Sydney Opera House.