The Expression of Sound


The perfect acoustical space can only be created in collaboration. Even after an architect ‘hands over the keys’, so to speak, this process continues: how are world-class acoustics maintained when faced with the varied mixed-use programs of contemporary music venues? From the amphitheater to the shoe-box and the vineyard; performance space is defined not by the position of the stage, but of the audience. Technology, shape and materials are all key here; but how does it match up with the human ear?

In November 2017, PLANE—SITE was invited to contribute to the World Architecture Festival. Our response was to create a multimedia, interactive panel drawing on our ongoing research into concert halls — beginning with Berlin’s Pierre Boulez Saal in 2015. The resulting four films, outlined below, were created to highlight what we see as major themes in contemporary music architecture. First presented as part of a main-stage panel at the 2017 World Architecture Festival, these videos provided the jumping off point for an intriguing conversation between panelists, the WAF audience and the videos themselves. Panelists included Michel Cova of dUCKS scéno, Tateo Nakajima of Arup, and Jakob Kurek of Henning Larsen. The panel was moderated by Andres Ramirez of PLANE—SITE.