Saturday, October 13, 2007

Floating Egg - The National Grand Theatre in Beijing

The National Grand Theatre in Beijing, China is considered to be the greatest architectural innovation in the city for several decades. This magnificent building includes an opera hall, concert hall and two theatres.

The main building of the National Grand Theater consists of an exterior shell, within which are a 2,416-seat opera house, a 2,017-seat concert hall, a 1,040-seat theater, a lobby and other supporting facilities.

The exterior of the theater is a titanium accented glass dome that is completely surrounded by a man-made lake. It is said to look like an egg floating on water. Guests arrive in the building after walking through a hallway that goes underneath the lake. It was designed as an iconic feature, something that would be immediately recognizeable.

Most of the shell is covered by titanium panels, and it is broken in the middle by a curtain of glass that opens gradually from top to bottom.

The pool surrounding the ellipsoid shell covers an area of 35,500 square meters, the main north entrance is an 80-meter-long corridor under the pool. The south entrance and other passages are under the pool too. The pool is surrounded by leisure squares made up of large greeneries.