Sometimes It’s The Little Things

Walt Disney Concert Hall
Acoustical Tales: What Concert Halls Get Wrong
By BARBARA JEPSON [Wall Street Journal, 24 Mar 05]
A new wave of distinctive 21st-century concert halls is changing the look and feel of classical music performance in the U.S. These halls have impressive architectural pedigrees and price tags — Frank Gehry designed the $275 million Disney Hall in Los Angeles; Rafael Vinoly, the $265 million Kimmel Center in Philadelphia; Santiago Calatrava, the coming $300 million Atlanta Symphony Center. Most of them, like architect William Rawn’s $99 million Strathmore Music Center in Bethesda, Md., shun the gilded, red-velvet opulence of traditional European models in favor of Modernist simplicity. They also strive for heightened spatial intimacy between audience and performer: Disney Hall, home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, has terraced seating areas surrounding the stage.
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