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Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Haus für Musik und Musiktheater der Kunstuniversität Graz (MUMUTH), Graz, Austria

UN Studio-designed music hall completes in Graz, Austria

The MUMUTH - Haus für Musik und Musiktheater, a faculty building for the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz (KUG), has been ten years in the making, including two years of construction but will now undergo a musical official opening celebration on 1 March 2009 together with performances of Mozart.

Since 1963 MUMUTH represents a central practice and event building for the KUG. “Finally we can offer our students an outstanding architectural building space to further their artistic training.”, says Rector KUG Georg Schulz.

The new Music Theatre, designed by Ben van Berkel of the Dutch architecture firm UNStudio following an international competition with 212 entries, has already formed the Austrian contribution to the Venice Biennale of Architecture.

Van Berkel told WAN in December that the design was a labour of love, coming from a musical background where his mother was a choir singer and he himself played piano. Of the design the architect says: “The desire to make a building that is as much about music as a building can be, has been a constant throughout the nearly ten years that it took to build the theatre and the themes that are at the basis of the building and its overall organization have also endured throughout this time.”

Construction of the 19 million euro new music theatre began in March 2006 and in August 2008 the Federal Real Estate Society (BIG) entrusted the main part of the building to the KUG. In February 2009 the MUMUTH also hosted part of the 7th International Competition “Franz Schubert and Modern Music”.

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