Studio Seilern-designed Andermatt Concert Hall all set for June opening

by Andrew Manns | 11 Apr 2019
Our fantastic new concert hall, which adds enormous value to Andermatt as a destination, will hopefully make a real contribution to music in Europe.
– Samih Sawiris, chairman at Orascom Development Holding

Andermatt Concert Hall, a 700-seat music centre taking shape in the canton of Uri in the Swiss Alps, is scheduled to open on 16 June with symphonic performances by the Berliner Philharmoniker.

Designed by Christina Seilern Architects, the new arts venue – formerly a war bunker – will feature an auditorium planned by theatre specialists dUCKS scéno in collaboration with Kahle Acoustics.

Shaped in what the design team have called an "origami configuration", the hall will also have a slanted glass facade to create the sensation of being "surrounded" by the elements.

The facility is part of a large-scale investment project to reposition Andermatt as a highly sought-after class cultural and entertainment hub.

Samih Sawiris, chairman of Orascom Holding Development, the company behind the scheme, originally earmarked £1.2bn (US$1.5bn, €1.4bn) for the Swiss town in 2005.

Sawiris eventually went on to develop the Chedi Andermatt resort in 2013 as well as the recently inaugurated Gotthard Hotel and Residences.

"Our fantastic new concert hall, which adds enormous value to Andermatt as a destination, will hopefully make a real contribution to music in Europe and bring pleasure to visitors and local people alike," he remarked in a statement.

Christina Seilern, principal at Studio Seilern, said: "It was an enormous honour to be asked to create a world-class performance venue in one of Europe's most exclusive resort destinations.

"The hall will be an exceptional, light-filled space where audiences can experience everything from solo recitals to full orchestral concerts in equal intimacy and comfort."

In his own words

Samih Sawiris describes the inspiration behind the Andermatt Concert Hall

"I have always believed that culture is an essential part of a major destination, and that it should be culture of the highest quality. With my mind set on a new concert hall, good enough to attract the best players in the world, I set about looking for an architect. I considered many before selecting Christina Seilern. The brief was to upgrade an existing building, and I realised that most of the star practices would want to start from scratch, to make sure their work would not be compromised. So I was grateful that Christina was prepared to begin with a very low-grade box and turn it into what it is today."

Studio Seilern  Andermatt  Swiss Alps 
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Studio Seilern-designed Andermatt Concert Hall all set for June opening
Andermatt Concert Hall, a 700-seat music centre taking shape in the canton of Uri in the Swiss Alps, is scheduled to open on 16 June with symphonic performances by the Berliner Philharmoniker.