Architecture For Entertainment Venues
Purpose-built structures for offering entertainment and accommodating audiences have produced many famous and innovative buildings. Modern theatre structures are among the most recognisable but specific architecture for entertainment was built during ancient times. The ancient Greeks built open air theatres and the Romans developed the stadium in an oval form known as a circus. Some of the grandest modern buildings for entertainment have brought fame to their cities as well as their designers. For example, the Sydney Opera House is a World Heritage Site. The O₂ is an entire entertainment precinct in London that contains an indoor arena, a music club, a cinema and exhibition space. The Bayreuth Festspielhaus in Germany is a theatre designed and built for performances of one specific musical composition.
Two of the chief architectural concerns for the design of venues for mass audiences are speed of egress and safety. The speed at which the venue can be emptied is important both for amenity and safety because large crowds take a very long time to disperse from a badly designed venue and this in turn creates a safety risk. The Hillsborough disaster is an example of how poor aspects of building design can contribute to audience deaths. Sightlines and acoustics are also important design considerations in most theatrical venues.
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