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The Newly Renovated Shanghai Concert Hall Reopens

Not as dramatic a renovation as the first time, but still good news for fans of the historical music center.
2020-09-07 12:00:00
After a 1.5-year renovation, the Cadillac Shanghai Concert Hall, one of the best venues in Shanghai for classic music, reopened on September 6.

The classic Baroque-style historical concert building was first constructed back in 1930, but this isn't the concert hall’s first renovation. Back in 2002, the whole building went through a herculean project, as the whole thing — the whole damn building! — was lifted over three meters off the ground, and then moved 66 meters to the south-east. At the time, it was touted as a proof-of-concept for the method of renovation, and Shanghai has since pulled the "move-the-whole-building" trick on more historically significant buildings, like the time they relocated a whole hall of the Jade Buddha Temple back in 2017.

Images courtesy of Cadillac Shanghai Concert Hall.

Compared to that, this recent renovation seems a little underwhelming. But still, a lot of significant changes: according to an interview with the concert Hall’s General Manager, they’ve revamped and hand-painted all the marble pillars outside of the concert rooms, renovated the entire Small Hall (also known as the Music Cube), fixed all 1,149 of the Tiffany-blue chairs in the Main Hall, and given its already-grandiose ceiling a new, ocean-blue shade and lighting — apparently how it looked in the 30s.

To celebrate the reopening and the concert hall’s 90th anniversary, they're putting on a series of concerts and live performances called "Music For Everyone" which will last till December. Six different concerts from renowned Chinese classical musicians, a dance theater piece called Shui Qiang (水腔, Tone of Water), popular music from young-generation artists like FloruitShow (福禄寿), world-fusion sets from HAYA and Mabang Band (马帮乐队), experimental sets from duo band Tai Yi Sheng Shui, and eccentric Chinese guqin (古琴) band Zi De Qin She (自得琴社).

Where's the House music? Thought this was music for everyone!

If you want to go check it out (and it's a very cool building), tickets are on sale now on the concert hall’s website. Opening night is on September 19 with Tan Dun performing with the Shanghai Opera Symphony Orchestra.