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  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Concert House
  4. The Netherlands
  5. 3XN
  6. 2005
  7. Muziekgebouw / 3XN

Muziekgebouw / 3XN

  • 01:00 - 29 October, 2009
Muziekgebouw / 3XN
Muziekgebouw / 3XN, © Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti

© Andrea Giannotti © Andrea Giannotti © Andrea Giannotti © Andrea Giannotti +24

  • Architects

  • Location

    Piet Heinkade 1, 1019 Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • Architect

  • Structural Engineers

    ABT BV, Netherlands
  • Client

    Geemente Amsterdam
  • Year Of Enchargement

  • Area

    15000.0 sqm
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

From the architect. The new Muziekgebouw in Amsterdam is the location for two music institutions in Amsterdam: the Ijsbreker for modern music and the BIMhuis for jazz and improvised music. Danish 3XN Architects won the competition in 1997.

© Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti

The structure of the building consists in a concrete volume, surrounded by a glass façade and covered by a roof slab, oriented towards the harbour and the station; on the right side a solid box is ejected over the side channel, supported by a bridge structure, and facing the center of Amsterdam. These objects, the glass volume, the hanged box and the covering roof, explain already from the exterior the hierarchy and the relation between space and functions. The project is then an ensemble of different objects under a common roof, coming from the idea of gathering more functions to let the complex attract a wide range of customers and visitors all day long.

© Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti

The fortunate location of the building has been enhanced by transparency. The main access is by a pedestrian bridge which leads to the upper foyer, and through the façade transparency it is evident how the foyer develops further down towards the terrace on the last part of the pier, offering spectacular views to and from the Amsterdam harbour. When going down the large stairs to the cafeteria and the terrace, natural light enters through the massive elements and drives to the deck on the harbour; and though the space looks empty and over-sized, it is not oppressive but rather well related to the importance of a classic auditorium’s foyer.

© Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti

Simplicity and elegance of details, natural light from the roof and from the facades, and roughness of materials give a warm atmosphere to the space. The untreated wood flooring and the concrete walls play together with the glazed façade to warm the large foyer both in feelings and in acoustics.

© Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti

The main hall, a high block of white concrete panels, seats 800 persons. Its peculiarity is the internal wall’s cladding, made out of panels with a colour-changing light system. The three levels of the balconies are then reproduced outside the concrete block by hanged slabs on the foyer.

© Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti

In the BIMhuis hall, accessible by the upper foyer through a stairs passage (the hall seats 300 people), the space is more familiarly sized, with a smaller cafe-foyer continuing into the camera music hall. Drawing the curtains behind the stage, during the concerts, it is a wonder to discover the view towards Amsterdam through the enormous glazed window. After three years of use, Amsterdam people enjoy the Muziekgebouw as a well-known music center and a charming place to spend time, as was in the intention of the Municipality and of the architects. It is a not-so-frequent case of successful city planning.

© Andrea Giannotti
© Andrea Giannotti
Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "Muziekgebouw / 3XN" 29 Oct 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


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Seven Seven · April 21, 2012

In such a music hall listening to beautiful music is how of enjoyment .

ELS · November 17, 2010

Enhancing Transparent Muziekgebouw / 3XN | ArchDaily via @archdaily

rossi · November 02, 2009

Ok, enough comparisons now? It obviously looks like a ton of non-symbol buildings by a waterfront... So? I'm sure it's not intentional.

Matthew · October 31, 2009

It's very much like the music hall on the Luzern waterfront in Switzerland, for example.

EF · October 30, 2009

It references (pretty closely) a waterfront performing arts center by Jean Nouvel...

jonathan · October 30, 2009

seems to reference the Diller Socofidio Institute of Contemporary art in Boston, esp. with that stair on the right.

rossi · October 30, 2009 06:20 PM

Only, this is completed in 2005, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston in 2006.

Jinx · October 30, 2009

I passed this building every day when it was under construction, been a while since I've last seen it.
It's construction always keeps impressing me, No arches or extraordinary bending but it does have a very strong powerful presence that is seen in the whole building.

I also think it is designed to be seen from a distance and as a whole (no picture!!). The road and rail track are a fair distance form the building and you only get close up when visiting the building (nothing else behind it or on the left).
But perhaps the street layout changed.

HW · October 30, 2009

Pretty clean and slick, but you could have fed alot of starving kids with that cantilevered roof. Would it even screen the plaza from wind-driven rain at that height? On the other hand, it is a nice public gesture/backdrop, especially at night with the underlighting.

ygogolak · October 30, 2009

Looks like they tried really hard to do something creative. Missed the mark for me though.

Architecture Feeds · October 29, 2009

Muziekgebouw / 3XN:
Architect: 3XN Location: Piet Heinkade 1, Amsterdam, the Netherlands Clie..
(Via @archdaily)


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