New South Wales
The Sydney Opera House was facing several problems by 2012, including outdated theatre machinery, poor acoustics, and accessibility issues. In response, CEO Louise Herron launched a “Decade of Renewal” leading up to the building’s 50th anniversary in 2023. ARM Architecture was appointed to revamp the Concert Hall, the last and largest of the renewal projects. The project aimed to improve the hall’s acoustics, functionality, and accessibility. New architectural interventions such as petal-shaped reflectors and sculpted timber panels were introduced to solve the Hall’s acoustic problems, while the stage was lowered and rebuilt with automated risers. Automated drapes and a new theatre machinery system were also installed. A passageway and lift were added to the foyers to improve the visitor experience and allow equitable access to all spaces. The result is a renewed Concert Hall for the next generation and a venue acoustically on par with the world’s great halls.