Ben van Berkel / UNStudio to design of the Lyric Theatre in the West Kowloon Cultural District, Hong Kong

UNStudio, in a joint venture with AD+RG, has been selected by the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) to provide consultancy services for the design and administration of the construction of the Lyric Theatre in the West Kowloon Cultural District (WKCD), which is scheduled for completion by 2019. The schematic design for the theatre is expected to be unveiled this autumn, with the design being carried out in UNStudio’s Shanghai and Hong Kong offices. UNStudio is the Lead Architecture Designer and AD+RG is the Lead Architecture Consultant.

Ben van Berkel:

“We are delighted to have been selected to contribute to the creation of one of the largest and most exciting new arts and cultural districts in the world and even more so, as we can now work closely with AD+RG, the WKCDA and the local arts community through a dedicated team at our Hong Kong office.”

Prof. Bernard V. Lim:

“The Lyric Theatre will be a world class performance destination for many artists. It is our great honour to joint venture with world renowned architect UNStudio, to work together with the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority, to deliver such a meaningful project to promote arts and culture to the people of Hong Kong and beyond.”

The 1,200-seat Lyric Theatre will be Hong Kong’s first world-class facility for dance performances, including ballet, contemporary and Chinese dance forms. In the run up to the opening of further major performing arts venues in the WKCD, it will also be used for a wide variety of performing arts events including drama, opera and musical performances. The Lyric Theatre will act as a platform for Hong Kong’s leading arts organisations, and be a new major venue to show programmes from Asia and worldwide.

UNStudio’s previous experience in theatre design includes the MUMUTH Music Theatre & Faculty Building in Graz (AT); the Theatre Agora in Leystad (NL) and the design for the Dance Palace in St. Petersburg (RU). The new Theatre Spijkenisse (NL) is currently under construction and due for completion this year. In the design for the new Lyric Theatre UNStudio will draw and expand upon knowledge garnered from its in-house research into the latest innovations in the material sciences, innovative organisational and sustainable principles and its extensive experience and research into auditorium acoustics.

AD+RG provides highly unique expertise in innovative design and over the years AD+RG has designed numerous institutional works in Hong Kong and Mainland China. AD+RG is the lead consultant for the soon-to-be constructed On-Campus Expansion of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. AD+RG’s recently completed projects include The Hong Kong Polytechnical Phase 8 New Academic Block and Auditorium and conversion of Mei Ho House to City Hostel for the Youth Hostels Association.

Michael Lynch, Chief Executive Officer, WKCDA:

“The design team for the Lyric Theatre is an excellent example of marrying global vision with local expertise. With this, our fifth venue unveiled in the past years, progress in the performing arts side of the WKCD jumps forward. I am certain that they will create for us a world-class venue for the Hong Kong people and visitors from abroad.”

Louis Yu, Executive Director of Performing Arts, WKCDA:

“The Lyric Theatre will dramatically change the local performing arts scene, and be one of the most exciting new venues for international programming in the city.”