Coinciding with their tenth anniversary of the Royal Danish Opera, Henning Larsen Architects has unveiled plans for a new Chinese Opera house in Yuhang. The project, sited in “the middle of a lake, on display to the entire city,” will serve as the centerpiece of an expansive new cultural district north of Hangzhou. It’s design, described by Henning Larsen to be more “playful” than the Copenhagen Opera, will feature a unique geometric facade and sloping roof, backdropped by a waterfront recreational park.
“To most people, going to the opera is at once a cultural and social experience: one goes to the opera to see a performance, but also to be seen. Thus, the social interaction of attendees before, during and after the show is just as important as the design of the auditorium itself,” said Henning Larsen.
“Light footbridges and balconies in the grand foyer of the Copenhagen Opera form the architectural answer to this staging of human interaction, providing points from which guests can watch each other and become part of the social event of going to the theatre. This unifying, active foyer space is conceptually repeated in the Yuhang opera, though through a different architectural idiom.”
In addition to the opera, the Yuhang project will include a theater, two museums, an art school and retail stores. An expected completion date has yet to be announced.