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Aberdeen Music Hall Reopens After Major Refurbishment

Aberdeen Music Hall has reopened following completion of a radical transformation. The Category-A listed concert hall has been closed since August 2016 to undergo a £9m redevelopment designed by BDP for the arts charity Aberdeen Performing Arts.

Our design has created additional public space and reconfigured existing rooms, equipping the venue to host more intimate performances and music education. The comprehensive refurbishment includes redecoration and architectural lighting that complements the listed interiors.

Together with a major upgrade to the 1,300-seat main auditorium, our design delivers step-free access to all levels for the first time in the building’s 190 year history, and provides new facilities that include a performance studio, a creative learning space and a contemporary café-bar. 

Architect director Bruce Kennedy said: “Our interdisciplinary design team has enjoyed a five year collaboration with Aberdeen Performing Arts, culminating in the realisation of their ambitious vision to transform the Music Hall into an engaging contemporary arts venue. We identified a series of radical interventions that unlocked a strategic redesign of spaces and circulation, transforming the way that people move through and use the building, opening it up to become accessible and inclusive both physically and culturally. Sensitively conserved heritage has been enhanced by our architectural lighting specialists, whilst the contemporary design of new elements and spaces mirrors the civic quality of the restored historic interiors. We are delighted that our response to the client’s brief has breathed new life into this renowned historic concert hall.”

Jane Spiers, chief executive of Aberdeen Performing Arts, said: “I believe that inspirational architecture sets the standard and leads to inspirational programming. What BDP has achieved within the cost constraints is so impressive and it looks stunning.

It's been a hugely ambitious and complex project and what's been achieved within total costs of £9m is incredible, thanks to a great team of committed professionals who believed in the project and have always gone the extra mile.

It's been a labour of love and a complete privilege to play a part in the history of such a national treasure.”

BDP provided architecture, all engineering, lighting design, acoustics and interior design.

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