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Disney Concert Hall by Frank Gehry

Los Angeles, California, 2003


Frank Gehry's stainless steel Walt Disney Concert Hall expanded the reach of Los Angeles' Music Center.
Shimmering steel panels

Walt Disney Concert Hall, by Frank Gehry, constructed with stainless steel plates that reflect the Los Angeles sunshine.

Photo by David McNew/Getty Images

Facts about the Walt Disney Concert Hall:

  • Opened: October 2003
  • Architect: Frank Gehry
  • Cost: $274 million
  • Size: on 3.6-acre campus
  • The main auditorium (2,265-seats) is designed to look and feel like a ship's hull
  • Roy and Edna Disney / CalArts Theater (266 seats) is known as REDCAT
  • Two outdoor amphitheatres: William M. Keck Foundation Children's Amphitheatre (300 seats)and the Nadine and Ed Carson Amphitheatre (120 seats)
  • Art Gallery: 3,000-square-foot operated and programmed by California Institute of the Arts
  • The Los Angeles Music Center: Incorporated the Walt Disney Concert Hall into its 11-acre campus of theaters, which includes the Ahmanson Theatre (1967), the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (1964), and the Mark Taper Forum (1967). REDCAT is not a part of the LA Music Center.

The stainless steel building caused some controversy after its grand opening, but Gehry responded and the controversial design was fixed.

In the Words of Architect Gehry:

"Maybe it's not beautiful by definition in their world, but it may over time become beautiful if you live with it, which is what happened to Bilbao and to Disney Hall. But in the first showing of them, people thought I was bonkers."

Sources: Venue: Walt Disney Concert Hall, The Music Center of Los Angeles County (accessed April 16, 2012); Our Theaters and Concert Halls, The Music Center of Los Angeles County [accessed January 17, 2013]; Conversations With Frank Gehry by Barbara Isenberg, 2009, p. 64

Take a Tour:

Learn More From These Books:

  • Iron: Erecting the Walt Disney Concert Hall by Gil Garcetti, 2002
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  • Symphony: Frank Gehry's Walt Disney Concert Hall by Frank Gehry, 2003
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