In 2010 Scandinavian architecture firm C. F. Møller won the 1st prize in an international competition for Norway’s Kristiansund Opera and Cultural Centre. Dating back to 1805, Norway’s oldest opera houses each year the Opera Festival Weeks, which is Norway’s “largest and most comprehensive presentation of opera and musical theatre and one of Scandinavia’s largest opera festivals”.
The vision of the new Opera House is to create a cultural power centre in Kristiansund, the capital of the region of Nordmøre, west of Trondheim – a landmark to the entire region.
The new cultural centre will house along with the opera, a new ballet centre, library, college centre, conference rooms, a restaurant, a cafe, and a skybar. C.F. Møller Architects were faced with the challenge of integrating two existing buildings, one being the former Folkets Hus. The new centre would create a new vibrant urban space by connecting the cultural centre with the nearby park, squares and pedestrian streets.
The design proposed by the architects, under the name Kulturkvartalet, is centred around the main concert hall, creating a unified cultural, dynamic and creative environment. The architects paid special attention to create a concert hall that would offer sublime acoustics and super flexible theatre settings.
The Kristiansund Opera is one of several significant cultural buildings designed by C. F. Møller Architects in recent years. These include the Darwin Centre in London, the cocoon shaped extension of the Natural History Museum in London, which contains both Darwin’s unique collection and a world-leading science research centre research facilities. C. F. Møller Architects has also been responsible for extension of the Concert Hall Aarhus, which has been doubled in size with a new Symphonic Hall with sublime acoustics and facilities for the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Academy of Music. Furthermore the company has won first prize in the competition for the new Odense Music and Theatre Hall, a cultural centre with four halls and facilities for the Carl Nielsen Academy of Music.
Architect: C. F. Møller Architects
Client: Kristiansund Municipality and FG Eiendom
Address: Kristiansund, Norway
Landscape: C. F. Møller Architects
Engineers: COWI, Buro Happold
Stage Technics: Torsten Nobling – AIX Arkitekter AB-Arteno
Size: 15,400 m²
Prizes: 1st Prize in international competition
Year of competition: 2010
Year of construction: 2014
*All images and information courtesy of C. F. Møller Architects.