Brooklyn-based architecture practice Bureau V unleashed a spectacular design for the Original Music Workshop, a new non-profit arts organization which will open in 2013 with a wide range of musical programming, from classical to jazz to experimental sound. Located in the heart of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the performance center was designed in collaboration with engineering gurus Arup and features state of the art acoustical technologies.
Like any good construction in Brooklyn these days, the building is a high-tech, state-of-the-art renovation of a disused industrial building on Wythe and North 6th streets, just one block from the East River. In this case, it’s an acoustic performance center with a series of variable acoustic treatments that allow the space to be tuned to specific instrumentation using acoustically isolated box-in-box construction, which minimizes background noise to studio levels inside the graffitied, hollowed-out remains of a sawdust factory. The result is a sublime collision of new and old: technology and ruin, progress and history, refinement and grit.
Bureau V principal Peter Zuspan explained that OMW came to them with a “two-fold request: the space needed to be both acoustically superior and a comfortable and visually compelling space, a departure from the standard black box theater.” The acoustically-driven, geometrically complex chamber hall will accomodate 170 chairs, or approximately 350 people standing. “The space is small enough to truly listen, while large enough to foster a sense of community,” said Bureau V principal Alexander Pincus. Because of its acoustical performance features, the space can double as a recording studio for up to 70 performers.
For construction photos, click here.