Photo © Christian Richters

Guest Contribution by Pascal Panagiotidis

UNStudio following an international competition with 212 entries was the selected one to create the MUMUTH, a faculty building for the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz. The main body is a spiral element that serves as the "point of reference" for the rest of the building. The central staircase twists around it while the interior space is transforming accordingly. Like in many projects of this kind, UNStudio paid extra attention to all that details that will ensure the sound quality for any type of performance. Mumuth is pure music!

Photo © Christian Richters

Photo © Christian Richters

Photo © Christian Richters

Press Release UNStudio / KUG
Opening MUMUTH - Haus für Musik und Musiktheater, Graz
The MUMUTH - Haus für Musik und Musiktheater, a faculty building for the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz (KUG), has been ten years in the making, including two years of construction and will be officially opened on March 1st 2009. To celebrate this special event the Institute for Music Drama will present a performance of W.A. Mozart’s opera “The Magic Flute”, just before a “Celebration for Otto Kolleritsch”, Rector emeritus of KUG and a longstanding supporter of MUMUTH, will take place.

Since 1963 MUMUTH represents a central practice and event building for the KUG. “Finally we can offer our students an outstanding architectural building space to further their artistic training. The mission of the Arts University is the on-going development of the arts. Thanks to MUMUTH our audience can be increasingly involved in this exciting process”, says Rector KUG Georg Schulz.

The new Music Theatre, designed by Ben van Berkel of the renowned Dutch architecture firm UNStudio following an international competition with 212 entries, has already formed the Austrian contribution to the Venice Biennale of Architecture.

Of the design of MUMUTH Architect Ben van Berkel says: “The desire to make a building that is as much about music as a building can be, has been a constant throughout the nearly ten years that it took to build the theatre and the themes that are at the basis of the building and its overall organization have also endured throughout this time.”

Construction of the 19 million euro new music theatre began in March 2006 and in August 2008 the Federal Real Estate Society (BIG) entrusted the main part of the building to the KUG. In February 2009 the MUMUTH also hosted part of the 7th International Competition “Franz Schubert and Modern Music”.

Upcoming events in MUMUTH include W.A. Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” (3rd, 5th and 7th March) and on April 2nd the new abo@MUMUTH starts with a staging of the “St. John Passion BWV 245”, the stage set for which has also been designed by Ben van Berkel/UNStudio (further performances: 4th, 6th and 8th of April).

Music Theatre, Graz 1998-2008
   Building: BIG, Bundesimmobiliengesellschaft m.b.H.
   Interior: KUG, University for music and applied art, Graz
Program: University faculty building
Gross floor surface: 6.200 m²
Volume: 31.600 m³
Site: 2.745 m²
Design year: 1998-2003
Construction year 2006-2008

UNStudio: Ben van Berkel, Caroline Bos, Hannes Pfau and Miklos Deri, Kirsten Hollmann, Markus Berger, Florian Pischetsrieder, Uli Horner, Albert Gnodde, Peter Trummer, Maarten van Tuijl, Matthew Johnston, Mike Green, Monica Pacheco, Ger Gijzen, Wouter de Jonge
Engineering: Arup London: Cecil Balmond, Volker Schmid, Charles Walker, Francis Archer
Engineering execution: Peter Mandl and Partners, Graz
Specifications: Housinc Bauconsult, Vienna
Accoustics and building physics: ZT Gerhard Tomberger, Graz / Pro Acoustics Engineering, Graz
Stage technique: e.f.f.e.c.t.s. technisches Büro GmbH, Klosterneuburg

MUMUTH - Music Theatre by UNStudio

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