Bao’An Performing Arts Center by Rocco Design Architects opens in Shenzhen | News



All images: Zhang Chao Studio / Rocco Design Architects Associates

Rocco Design Architects Associates has completed the Performing Arts Center as part of their larger master plan for the Bao-An Cultural District in Shenzhen, China. The 600-seat, 28,000-square-meter building houses Shenzhen’s first performance hall and will host opera, dance, symphony and theater performances.

Overlooking Quanhai Bay and the South China Sea, the building anchors the southern end of the Bao-An Cultural District. The 110,000 square meter arts and performance complex was planned and designed by Rocco Design Architects and includes three major new destinations: the Performing Arts Center, a library and a Youth Palace. The Library was completed in 2013 and the Palais des Jeunes in 2018.

The design of the Performing Arts Center is inspired by the long, narrow waterfront site. The base of the building is a low, wave-like volume that conveys a sense of rhythm and movement along the axis of the campus. The delicately perforated facade of the building harkens back to ancient Chinese crafts such as wood and ivory carving. This produces spectacular visual effects reflecting the shimmering light on the bay. The canvas envelope of the structure adjusts the transparency according to the spaces it encloses. Openings are present in public foyers and gathering places, while theaters and rehearsal spaces become more opaque. This facade concept is rooted in traditional Chinese building screens and shadow walls.

A tilted flight tower creates an orientation point that highlights the center as the focal point of the complex. Air bridges connect the tower to the main volume offering views of the bay. Raised gathering areas and porticoes line the base of the building, along with a restaurant that sits at the end of a sloping volume that extends to the plaza.

Upon entering the building, visitors pass through a three-level hall. A grand, curved staircase and swollen walls finished with wooden slats extend the undulating nature of the exteriors. Natural light from above enters the spaces through the perforated facade.

The delicately sculpted walls of the main performance hall accentuate the organic geometries of the space and optimize the acoustic conditions by attenuating background noise and improving sound clarity. The stage includes six double-layered elevators that can be raised and lowered within a radius of ten meters. The orchestra pool can also be raised to main stage height to extend the performance area into the house.

In addition, the main performance hall is complemented by a 600-seat theater. The space is designed for flexibility, in which the stage and seats can be easily rearranged, in order to accommodate experimental productions.

Opening of the Performing Arts Center by Rocco Design Architects Associates on September 17, 2021.


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