Τhe Building - Megaron Athens Concert Hall

Τhe Building

The Master Plan

The first phase of the building history of Megaron the Athens Concert Hall begins with the preliminary design of a Centre fof Music, which is prepared by the Doxiadis-Skepers-Vassiliadis team.

The Friends of Music Association also contacted the German architect Walter Gropius through his Greek partner, architect Pericles Sakellariou. Gropius was in charge of the plans for the American Embassy, then under construction, and contact is deemed necessary in order to get a general idea of the architectural style of the building adjacent to Megaron.

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The plans for the Friends of Music Hall, later Christos Lambrakis Hall, on the recommendation of Herbert von Karajan, were commissioned in 1970 to the German architects Heinrich Keilholz and Johannes Burkhardt, leading experts in acoustics. Their work on the completion of the hall was continued – after 1982 – by Müller BBM.

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Model of the building of Megaron based on Em. Vourekas’ design

Emmanuel Vourekas and his associates deliver the construction design of the building. The civil engineers are B. Abakumkin and P. Abouselam, while the electrical design is completed by A. Angelidis.

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Prime Minister Konstantinos Karamanlis lays the cornerstone.

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Construction

Megaron the Athens Concert Hall is gradually changing the appearance of Vasilissis Sofias Avenue, while the progress of the project is being followed by all Athenians. Despite funding issues, the construction is progressing thanks to the perseverance and work under the tireless involvement and supervision of Christos D. Lambrakis.

It is worth noting that the external lighting of the building was donated by the French Government.

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The Friends of Music Hall under construction

Construction

The construction of the Great Hall begins in 1981. In 1986, the German architect Helmut Müller visits Athens to carry out the final acoustic study. He proposes a number of changes to improve the acoustics that are accepted. The most important of which are the modifications to the great hall (limiting the width of the hall with side boxes and the width of the stage with movable screens).

The wood panelling is made in Germany by Schildknecht Innenausbau GmbH, a company specialising in classical music concert halls, and comes in prefabricated pieces to be installed in the Friends of Music Hall.

THE DETAILS

The choice of each material and each object in the building is made with strict criteria of aesthetics and material quality in mind, aiming at discreet luxury and durability over time. Dionysos marble, timber from Germany, special orders of decorative elements and cooperation with the best Greek designers create an interior of unparalleled aesthetics and functionality.

 

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“Clytemnestra”, Hryssa (1991) ©Yannis Bournias
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“Olympic Circles”, Yorgos Zongolopoulos (1991), Megaron main entrance ©Yannis Bournias
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“Muse” by Eleni Potaga – Stratou adorns the Atrium ©Karamanian
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One of the 9 rosettes with musical imagery from antiquity, designed and donated by Ilias Lalaounis, that adorn the marble halls and walls of Megaron. ©Yannis Bournias
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Chandelier Peter Rath – Ernst Beranek and constructed by Lobmeyr Werkstaette GmBH,, especially for Megaron the Athens Concert Hall. ©Yannis Bournias
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“The Wave”, Panayotis Tetsis (2005), at the ground floor foyer of the Christos Lambrakis Hall. ©Yannis Bournias
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The foyer lights are made with Murano glass by Klimafot, while the furniture is designed by Varangis. ©Yannis Bournias
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The foyer lights are made with Murano glass by Klimafot, while the furniture is designed by Varangis. ©Yannis Bournias
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The organ at Megaron is one of the biggest in Europe and was donated by the German Federal Government. ©Yannis Bournias
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The keyboard of the organ at Megaron ©Xenofon

Conference Centre – Alexandra Trianti Hall

The second part of  Megaron the Athens Concert Hall, the Conference Centre, was funded by the Greek state to meet the country’s needs for large conference facilities of international standards, and was inaugurated in 2004.  Part of the Conference Centre is the Alexandra Trianti Hall, one of the largest Opera Halls in Europe.

Understage

The Alexandra Trianti Hall is the only hall in Greece that has 4 spaces equal in size to the stage next to and below the stage.

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Understage

The depth of the understage that accommodates the stage mechanisms is 40 meters while the height of the stage tower is 27 meters. The hall has the capacity for staging very large stage productions.

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