Henning Larsen to lead redesign of largest opera house in Paris

by Andrew Manns | 06 Feb 2019

Scandinavian architecture practice Henning Larsen have been tapped to expand the Opéra Bastille – the largest opera house in Paris.

The renovated structure will feature an extended foyer, an 800-seat concert hall, workshop facilities, and a public garden path with links to the Viaduc des Arts and the rue de Lyons.

First proposed in 2017 in response to a competition announced by France's Ministry of Culture and Communication, the new cultural building will pay homage to the original plan envisioned by Uruguayan architect Carlo Ott.

Ott's studio produced an award-winning masterplan for the opera house in 1983. The completed theatre was inaugurated on 13 July 1989.

"Our goal is to fulfil the original vision and potential for the Opéra Bastille in a way that honours and accents the existing architecture," explained Søren Øllgaard, partner and design director at Henning Larsen.

He added: "We want to open the opera up to its surroundings in this busy area of Paris and make it a local hotspot of urban social life.

"For us, this is an opportunity to bring new life to a city landmark in a way that blends our own architectural identity with Carlos Ott's legacy."

Other companies working on the Opéra Bastille project include French design practice Reichen and Robert Associés (RR&A), engineering group CET Ingénierie, scenography consultancy dUCKS scéno, and acoustics firm Peutz & Associés.

Construction on the Opéra Bastille is scheduled to begin later this year and conclude by 2023.

Paris  Bastille  Henning Larsen  Carlo Ott 
Scandinavian architecture practice Henning Larsen have been tapped to expand the Opéra Bastille – the largest opera house in Paris. The renovated structure will feature an extended foyer, an 800-seat concert hall, workshop facilities, and a public garden path with links to the Viaduc des Arts and the rue de Lyons. First proposed in 2017 in response to a competition announced by France's Ministry of Culture and Communication, the new
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Construction on the cultural landmark is slated to begin later this year. / Courtesy of Henning Larsen
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