Another high-profile international firm is getting a chance to leave its mark on one of China’s most popular tourist destinations as Heatherwick Studio has been selected by the Haikou Tourism & Culture Investment Holding Group to design a new performing arts center for the island province of Hainan.
Located in the capital city of Haikou, the center will bring together an opera house, theater, and concert hall into one sweeping canopy to form an “open-air village.”
Partner Eliot Postma says the center will be “an extension of the city [that] will contribute to life on the street throughout the day.”
Featuring a suite of educational spaces, performance, and rehearsal areas, the venue has a total capacity of 3,800 and will serve as the centerpiece of the Jiangdong urban area’s cultural quarter.
The project represents Heatherwick Studio’s first foray into opera house design after previously being chosen as the co-designers of a doomed Lincoln Center revamp in 2015. Postma says the design inspiration takes from the surrounding volcanic landscape and costuming traditions of the Hainanese opera in a way that “blends the formality of performance with the informality of island culture, making opera more accessible and offering everyone a space to meet whether you have a ticket or not.”
Construction will begin sometime before the end of the year. Archinect will share more project updates as soon as they are made available.
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