The prestigious project, including the 1939 grade II* listed existing building's refurbishment and extension, involved working with a 1,790 seat concert hall that also regularly transforms into a cinema. The original building, designed by leading local architect Herbert Rowse in an Art Deco style, has already been restored once, in 1995, but its continuous use and growing needs meant a revamp was due. Caruso St John was appointed to handle the ambitious project in 2012.
The works on-site consisted of three key parts: the front-of-house area, where the architects restored the existing sequence of public rooms, from lobby to bar/café, to the spacious corridors leading into the auditorium, incorporating discreet interventions in functionality and colour; the main auditorium, which was streamlined and brought up-to-date with the productions' contemporary demands, including stage machinery and lighting; and the back of stage facilities and office space, which received the most radical changes, housed in a new extension at the building's rear.
A brand new, second performance space is also contained within the extension. This was designed to be as flexible and adaptable as possible, while maintaining a visual vocabulary that hints back to Rowse's original Art Deco part of the building, making for a harmonious addition.
The Liverpool Philharmonic Hall opens on the 10th October with a programme of music that reflects the life of much-loved American conductor Carl Davis.