Rabat Grand Theatre / Zaha Hadid

Courtesy of

Following a recent ceremony in Rabat, Morroco, Agence pour l’Aménagement de la Vallée du Bouregreg (The Bouregreg Valley Development Agency) verified that architectural designs will be provided by Zaha Hadid Architects.  The program will include three theater spaces, indoor spaces consisting of 2,050-seat and a 520-seat, and a fully-equipped outdoor amphitheater holding up to 7,000 people.   The theaters will share back of house facilities, efficiently reducing the size of the building services needed.  Creative studios will also be incorporated into this cultural venue.  Estimated cost is at 120 Million Euros for the Rabat Grand Theatre.

Follow the break for more renderings of The Rabat Grand Theatre.

Architects: Zaha Hadid Architects
Location: Rabat,
Design: Zaha Hadid with Patrik Schumacher
Associate: Nils Peter Fisher
Project Leader: William Tan
Project Team: Torsten Broeder, Martin Krcha, Hoda Nobakhti, Rafael Contreras, Yevgeniya Pozigun, Michal Treder
Structure Engineer: Adams Kara Taylor
MEP Engineer: MaxFordham
Acoustics & Theatre: Artec Consultant
Facade: Donnell Consultants Incorporated
Lighting: Office for Visual Interaction Inc
Client: Agence pour l’Aménagement de la Vallée du Bouregreg
Project Area: 47,000 sqm
Renderings: Methanoia, Courtesy of Zaha Hadid

Created by Methanoia

In the Bouregreg Valley at the heart of Rabat, The Grand Theatre will be part of one of the largest developments in Morocco.  This theater, with its innovative design and cutting-edge infrastructure  will surely be a landmark for the city and the region.

Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

Taking its direction from the adjacent Bouregreg River, the design in one fluid sweep traverses from the ground extending into the sky.  The auditoriums are enveloped within the sculpted building that moves back to the ground, melting into the landscape.

Created by Methanoia

Mr. Essakl, Managaing Director of  The Bouregreg Valley Development Agency said, “The Grand Theatre is part of a national programme of cultural development initiated by His Majesty King Mohammed VI. The construction of the Grand Theatre will allow Rabat to showcase its rich cultural heritage as one the world’s greatest cultural centres.”

Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

Zaha Hadid shared her willingness stating, “I am delighted to be building the Grand Theatre in Rabat.  Morocco’s unique musical traditions and rich cultural history in the performing arts are renowned throughout the world. I am honoured to be part of the cultural development of the nation’s capital.”

Cite: Minner, Kelly. "Rabat Grand Theatre / Zaha Hadid" 22 Nov 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 19 Sep 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=90812>


  1. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    Snake oil salesmen. Subdivision surfaces and fancy renders, is this all that takes to win competitions and built these days? What are the judges smoking seriously?

  2. Thumb up Thumb down +2

    only aerial views? Maybe this building is designed for aeroplane pilots? I’m guessing that it doesn’t look too impressive from the street level. Not that I’m that impressed by the aerial views either. This is an object, not architecture. Architecture, in my mind, is about space and in these pictures I see very little of that aspect.

  3. Thumb up Thumb down -2

    Fresh and inspiring. Zaha Hadid, I can say without hesitations, is the most innovative architect of this era. With every competition she demonstrates an inimitable talent for reinventing not only herself, but the built form. Every competition seems to wildly recast the possibilities of formal language with her unpredictable, revolutionary approach to describing tectonic systems never before realized on paper let alone reality. Part of the sheer ecstasy of living in this grand age of Zaha Hadid is the anticipation that whatever it is she produces will reach down into your core and shake the foundations upon which you stand, only to emerge with a sensation of clarity and joy that each new building she designs is an undiminishing announcement of architectural rebirth.

    • Thumb up Thumb down +1

      I like that ! considering you’re joking.
      She could be some sort of weird guru, all right.

      … it has been funny the first time, but seriously, this is becoming very scary.

  4. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    ha that is some superb copy writing Nicolie! Probably the best piece of satire I’ve seen all year.

  5. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    This reminds me… I must get a new dustbuster.

    Wonder if it will be as badly detailed as the Guangzhou building? Although that one did use cellotape to hold some of the cladding on which was very innovative.

  6. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    I enjoy ZH’s work a lot even though I must admit it is often redundant. My only concern would be that if all the structure she designs look alike they will not be works of art but just mere reproductions. But well, before someone says so, I am just in my second year in architecture. Nevertheless, I love fancy artistic stuff(which does not mean that I approve all of her pieces).

  7. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    The people talk that an architect is a real architect after 50 years, after this age some of they’re imagination explode and they give to the entire world they’re twisted mind products. But after this explosion, when even the smoke is gone, all the remains are just reproduction. I really admire those starchitect, even if are comercial or not. Why I admire them?: just one reson: they’re work to be the best in this domanine of architecture, because is not like music, even that architecture is inspired of it, when you can came half naked on the scene and have after that show a platinum disc. And I came with a thing: All of you how are just blame they’re works, most of you are’t even a profesionist architecture critic, or maybe architects, you have more to learn and understand that those people change the world’s conception and life style, so who do you think you are. Maybe after long time, some of you will apear on this site with some project, then I really want to see how you can resist to stupid critics and totaly far away for architectural language (this is not a stupid contest like: You’re mama is so fat…to distroy they’re work in few stupid words)

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      Well, that’s the thing, the architect (as a person) doesn’t and even shouldn’t matter, since we can look at the presentation of the building here. So I don’t care if it’s designed by Zaha or someone I have never heard of, this building (in my modest opinion) doesn’t sit comfortably in the urban structure of the place. It just sits there, despite of the grand lines drawn to the ground and does nothing. It’s a passive lump, somekind of weird hill and as such, is quite akward. Lots of bravado went in to creating the form and most of it doesn’t show on the level of the human eye. Maybe this is just bad presentation of the project and the building is brilliant, but we don’t know, since we’re offered only pr-material, that’s not satisfactory to really judge the building on it’s real merits. And yes, any person with a working brain, should be allowed to express their opinion on the built enviroment. We all have to live in it.

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      I think what R Goldschmidt is saying here is that he is so absolutely overwhelmed by this building and in particular of Ms. Hadid, a sentiment that I can agree with, that he is left unable to adequately express the thrill that made his and my heart stop. While I think my own excitement manifested itself in a thoughtful few hours to collect myself and looking over Ms. Hadid’s body of work so that I might attempt to write a paean to her brilliance, I believe Mr. or Ms. Goldschmidt simply went to Babelfish to find a way to express his emotions and I think they are quite clear.

  8. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    omg…..guggenheim museum in Vilnius project looked kind of the same…. her architecture is very repetitive. and yea it looks like a pc mouse :D good one hovvard

  9. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    Having a “signature” is the dream of every Architect… so be repetitive: at least you are constant.

    • Thumb up Thumb down 0

      surely the kind of architect to be admired is one that has a signature style free of repetition….great architects like alvar aalto for instance. zaha does not figure among these

  10. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    well, I’d like to consider more the psychological issues that are well inherited in that space design – or object, as the space itself isn’t obvious here -. Spatial rapport (the communication between the users and the spatial elements) is well initiated by the smooth curved leading paths that ends with obvious penetrations in the objects surface. The way it leads the user makes a good fluidity in the users flow – which is so good -, the paths suggests some extra walking around the building while giving the possibility of entering the object from different approaches.
    From a spatial thermodynamic view point, the object is cold as not a lot of details are designed within it, but it makes balance with the overly detailed urban space around it, and axially it is well harmonized.
    I’m always fascinated how Hadid’s associates always fit the NLP approach in there designs. I wonder if they know that already!

  11. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    The cynic who often travels to Morocco thinks to himself:
    Considering that no one ever finishes anything in Morocco, it will be interesting to see how this one is going to look.

    Specifically, how will this present itself once translated into poor quality in-situ concrete (with hardly any reinforcement) and breezeblock infill same as 99,9% of all buildings in the country? And as for the likelihood of the public spaces around it ever being finished – well, it may look great sitting on a field of gravel and non-recyclabe plastic.

    It isn’t ZH’s fault, but seriously this country is not in need of monuments rather better quality buildings for the people.

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