Berliner Philharmonie

Location

Berliner Philharmonie

The Berliner Philharmonie is made up of two concert halls located downtown Berlin: the first was specifically designed by Hans Scharoun to welcome symphonic performances and the second designed by Edgar Wisniewski for chamber music. The Berliner Philharmonie is home to the world renowned Berliner Philharmoniker.

After the destruction of the 1890 hall by a bomb in 1944, a new one was built and inaugurated on October the 15th 1963. Herbert von Karajan, at the time musical director of the orchestra, played an important part in the choosing of Scharoun. The building took part in the Kulturforum of West Berlin along with Scharoun’s other accomplishement the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin and Ludwig Miles van der Rohe’s Neue Nationalgalerie.

The bigger hall is shaped in the form of a pentagon, nearly two hundred feet wide and a hundred and sixty five feet deep. At its center lies the stage around which the audience takes place on different balcony levels. This specific arrangement allows for a wonderful view of the orchestra and finely tuned acoustics. In addition the hall is equipped with a recording studio and an organ.

Scharoun’s exceptional new idea has been a hallmark of the architectural tradition of concert halls. His “shoe box” model has thus been reproduced in other famous halls such as Vienna’s Musikverein,Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Tokyo’s Suntory Hall and Los Angeles’ Walt Disney Concert Hall where the audience is seated on all sides of the orchestra.

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