Completed in 2003, the Walt Disney Concert Hall ought to be considered one of the architectural wonders of the 21st Century - or is it the case with every architectural masterpiece by Frank Gehry? The famous architect did his usual magic by challenging architectural norms and concepts, much as Gaudí had done in the last century. The pictures speak for themselves but are no substitute to an obligatory visit to this marvel, which has become a tourist attraction in Downtown Los Angeles. The Concert Hall is home to the LA Philharmonic and is known for its excellent acoustics.
For more photos, take a look at the travelogue: "Frank Gehry's Walt Disney Concert Hall".
The Walt Disney Concert Hall just opened in 2003 and is the new home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. A remarkable piece of architecture, the building has evoked comparisons to the Sydney Opera House and is surely one of the most significant new buildings in the USA. When you're in Los Angeles, you should stop by and see it!
Tours are set to begin in early 2004. You should contact Disney Hall directly for information and details.
Information about Disney Hall:
AREA: 293,000 square feet
Completion October, 2003
SEATING CAPACITY: 2,265 seats
COST: $274 million
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN: Designed by internationally renowned architect, Frank Gehry, the 293,000-square-foot Concert Hall features a wavy, steel exterior designed to look like a ship with its sail at full mast. Gehry wanted to create the feeling of traveling along a ceremonial barge to music. The centerpiece of the Concert Hall, a 2,265-seat auditorium with natural lighting in which the audience surrounds the orchestra, was designed to look and feel like the ship's hull. The auditorium's curved wood ceiling is meant to evoke the feeling of billowing sails. The "vineyard" shape of the Hall with its curved wood ceiling is designed to retain the superb acoustical characteristics of a traditional "shoebox" style concert hall. Audience members surround the orchestra platform for a uniquely interactive and intimate experience.
Weird! Can you believe that this strange structure is a place for classical music. 12,500 individual pieces of steel create this strange (but so interesting for the visitor) building that is full of curves and lines, a unique design made by Frank Gehry. There are some nice gardens too.
It’s all about the music here of course, and the acoustics of this concert hall supposed to be one of the best, I say supposed because we didn’t have the chance to check on our own during a concert of classical/jazz or world music due to lack of time but I really wish I had. If you are not interested to attend a concert you can come in the morning when there are tours (9.00-15.00)
The price of the ticket depends on the seating, front orchestra seating can cost you up to $350 but there are tickets from $20 (for students). Check their site for program.
I heard the LA Philharmonic perform Mahler's 6th Symphony and the acoustics were absolutely amazing. I heard everything loud and clear and my aunt and I were sitting all the way in the last row! There isn't a bad seat in the house, I'm convinced. So, if you enjoy classical music, and you like strange Frank Gehry architecture (he designed Millenium Park in my hometown) this is the place to be. The tickets can be a bit expensive, but it all depends on where you want to sit. But as I've said, the sound is definitely good no matter where you are.
The Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Ahmanson Theatre, and the Mark Taper Forum they are all located in at the Music Center of Los Angeles and if you are visiting LA this is a must see. Try to catch a show, a play a concert ....anything. Or just come and check out this beautiful place. The architecture is very unique, there are many restaurants to chose from, the gardens are beautiful and the lighting is really nice.
Tour times are 9am to 3pm daily. $10 adults. The tours include the four levels of the Hall but not the Auditorium because of the rehersals.
We spent the next hour or so wandering around downtown LA. We walked by the new Walt Disney Concert Hall. An interesting piece of architecture, for me it’s a personal point of interest. Back in the early 1980’s a Japanese exchange student lived in my house for a school year. She has since become a television reporter for one of the more prominent news services in Japan. While I was in Vancouver, Washington last week I watched a tape of her covering the opening of the concert hall. It was very interesting to see someone who lived with me in that context after so many years. We didn’t actually go inside the concert hall, but we did get a picture.
If you have ever been to Bilbao, Spain, you will very likely see a building that looks very similar to this one. Why? Simply because the architect is the one and same. Walking around all sides of the building is a pretty amazing thing to do, not to mention when you are driving by from different angles, and seeing different things. From steep slopes to sudden turn arounds- the building is fantastic. And once you get inside, the acoustics are great as well. The best thing to do is look at the building from the back to the front, and walk up the stairs from the side to gaze out over the streets.
To say that this building is interesting and unique is certainly an understatement. It was designed by Frank Gehry and apparantly took 10 years to complete. Locals say that toward the end, it was so far behind schedule that it was illuminated by spotlights and worked on through the night. It finally opened in the fall of 2003.
There are a series of hidden stairways and paths that will take you almost to the rooftop and completely around this futuristic stainless steel clad structure. There is also a secret garden on the backside. It is definetely worth a look if you are in LA.
Disney Concert Hall, which opened October 23, 2003, is absolutely the most beautiful building I've ever seen. Living nearby, I've gotten to watch it go up over the last couple of years. The final product is simply stunning.
Most people don't know that it was designed BEFORE the Guggenheim Museum in Spain. It just took 10 years to build ours, so Bilbao opened first and got all the attention.
Architect Frank Gehry is an Angeleno, and loves our symphony. He created the hall specifically for them, and used them as his inspiration throughout.
If you visit Los Angeles before January 26, 2004, you can see an exhibit of Gehry's work (much of it unbuilt) that's truly fascinating. It's at the Museum of Contemporary Art, just down the street from the concert hall. More info at www.moca.org.
Check out my travelogue for more pictures!
I was lucky enough to visit during the opening week of the concert hall. Situated atop bunker hill, this masterpiece of architecture designed by Frank Gehry will blow your mind.
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