Between a parkway and a busy freeway, Washington’s Kennedy Center will open a massive campus next year where the public can view up close how art is made.
Natural light floods the two-level sloping design dotted by three white board-form concrete pavilions that play host to 11 intimate rehearsal/classroom/performance spaces.
It’s almost the antithesis of the center’s original 1971 building, a column-filled cavernous structure dressed in Italian Carrara marble.
The REACH in contrast is all soaring ceilings, huge windows and swooping curves, which architect Steven Holl said were inspired by glissando, a continuous slide of notes. There are no columns.
“Even on the inside, the structure is the form and the shape,” Holl, 70, explained in an interview.
Holl’s team developed “crinkle concrete” to soften sound in ways he says are superior to acoustic tiles. The deeply indented slabs also serve as supporting walls.