Strengthening the relationship between the arts and the community through innovative design
What is the nature of the opera house in the twenty-first century?
For the Dallas Opera, the answer was simple: the building shouldn’t only play a central role in the cultural life of Dallas, but be a destination in its own right. The idea was that a modern opera house could remove the barriers of the traditional operatic experience and increase accessibility to the arts. That idea guided the design of this innovative theatrical facility.
An extending solar canopy breaks down the barrier between inside and outside and establishes a direct relationship between the two. This canopy also creates a major public space for the Performing Arts District of Dallas. The 60-foot glass façade similarly reinforces a relationship between the opera house and the city—dramatic views of McDermott Performance Hall and the Grand Lobby are visible from the exterior while sweeping views of downtown Dallas and portions of Uptown are visible from the interior.
Once inside, the auditorium creates a sense of intimacy with the performers. A horseshoe plan ensures the audience is as close as possible to the stage, and materials throughout improve the resonance of the human voice. From the acoustics to the views, the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House is a reinterpretation that sets the standard for what an opera house should be in the twenty-first century.
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