The design by Cukrowicz Nachbaur Architekten ZT from Bregenz in Austria forms a calm focus in the middle of the varied architecture of the Werksviertel. It accounts for the industrial warehouses in the area and “will create a center for the whole quarter”, architect Nachbaur-Sturm explained when presenting the winning design. “We will build a depot of sound, a cathedral, a temple of music.”
The design by Cukrowicz Nachbaur Architekten ZT conjures up associations of a large marquee, a works hall, warehouses, or a market hall. It is a stand-alone structure, with four equally striking façades. A pedestal zone will demonstrate its easy accessibility to passers-by, while the steepness and height of the sloping roof lend the 45-metre-high building a presence that is recognisable from afar.
The outer shell of the concert hall will be made of glass, a material which can look just as industrially robust as it can ceremonial and filigree. As dusk falls, this turns the edifice into an illuminated sculpture and a bright marquee.
In the ground-floor zone the structure references the quarter, with a café-restaurant and shops facing the city. In the northeast there is a small foyer for the small auditorium and a connection to the spacious, multi-story foyer in the northeast of the building. Escalators lead to the individual floors. The concert halls themselves are positioned on top of each other in the centre of the structure and form its heart. Correspondingly, the three zones foyer, hall, and backstage/administration are organized horizontally.
Based on the Musikverein in Vienna, the large hall for an audience of around 1,800 is conceived as a “shoe box” at a ratio of 2:1:1. The orchestra podium is located slightly towards the centre, allowing space for seats behind. The stalls rise towards the narrow sides of the hall and merge with the first of the circles. The geometry is such that the distance to the musicians is not greater than around 32 metres. The small auditorium with 600 seats is also designed as a “shoe box”. A ceiling housing technical equipment and numerous lifting platforms mean the hall can be used for all manner of musical performances. The direct link to the ground-floor foyer makes banquets and stand-up receptions possible as well. For experimental formats there is a third stage, the Werkstatt, with seating for 200.
Also envisaged is a location for the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich with performance space and rehearsal rooms, and a music teaching area for children and adults.