Subterranean Concert Hall by Peter Haimerl
Architecture: Peter Haimerl Architektur (DE)
Location: Lobensteiner Straße 4, 95192 Lichtenberg (DE)
The space opens up like a granite cavern. Walls and ceilings dissolve behind enormous, faceted stone splinters that are spread everywhere as if there had been an explosion. Altogether there are 22 of these large sculptures; their tetrahedral volumes are made of panels that measure up to 13 m in length and are mounted on a subconstruction of steel which serves to fix them to the concrete ceilings and walls of the hall. The strikingly small, nearly private concert space designed by Munich architect Peter Haimerl and his team resembles a mine in its intensive atmosphere. Its 88 seats are distributed to both sides of the 65-m2 stage. The acoustic enhancement on the inner surfaces of the granite splinters creates a sound experience that works with the architecture to make an unmistakable, synaesthetic event.
The concert hall lies well-hidden beneath a hill in the park belonging to Haus Marteau. It is part of the modernization project carried out by the Munich architects. The villa, which is situated in Lichtenberg in the Franconian Forest, is named after the man who built it: violinist Henri Marteau. Since 1913, the Upper Franconian government has used the villa as a music retreat for international up-and-coming talent. These aspiring musicians take part in master classes covering all orchestral instruments and singing. In keeping with the tradition honoured by Henri Marteau himself, the courses end with a small final concert.
Antlers, heavy carpets and many portraits − among them one of Kaiser Wilhelm II − characterize the historical interior of the house. Here, everything remains nearly as its heirs left it. Peter Haimerl Architektur had the cellar of the house lowered by 60 cm to create a new, complete level.
This garden level, as it is now called, has its own entrance on the north side of the villa. The cafeteria, practice rooms and a foyer are found here. A long, wood-panelled corridor leads guests and musicians from there down to the south side and into the concert hall. Like a cave, the space opens here with its small central stage and promises intense musical experiences in Lichtenberg.
We feature this project in Detail 10.2021.