La Scena Musicale

Friday, 23 January 2009

Copenhagen's Pricy New Concert Hall

Six years under construction, Copenhagen's new concert hall opened Saturday night with a gala, "invitation only" audience and the Danish queen in attendance. The hall, coming in at nearly 300 million dollars, is close to the cost of Disney Hall in Los Angeles - which still narrowly holds the record for most expensive.
Set in a grim industrial area north of the city center, the 1800 seat auditorium is only the largest in the building which also houses three smaller venues for chamber music, jazz and other events. It is all part of a complex for the Danish radio and television service (DR Byen - Danish Radio Town) and the 3000 employees have already been relocated from downtown to the new site.
A dramatic cobalt-blue cube, its fabric-like exterior hosts video projections but will also show the activity inside on performance nights. Inside, in a dramatic reference to the interior of Berlin's famed Philharmonie, blond wood and "vinyard" shaped sections completely surround the stage.
Pritzker Prize winning architect Jean Nouvel's design makes a major architectual statement for the main orchestra in Denmark, the Danish National Symphony. It will also host visiting orchestras and recitalists. Two years overdue and with a hugh cost overun, it could suggest what the new Philharmonie in Paris, by the same architect, might be like. That is scheduled for 2012 but final approvals and construction has not yet started.
You can see the spectacular interior and who is in the Royal Box on opening night when Canadian soprano Measha Brueggergosman sings Massenet's L'extase de la vierge. This is from the live telecast Saturday night:
- Frank Cadenhead

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  • I think, from looking at El Croquis' monograph on Nouvel, 2002-2007? that the lobby has projections of performance in the arts too.

    By Blogger Stuart, At 24 January 2009 at 16:58  

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