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Shenzhen Opera House

Shenzhen Opera House

When the sky is high
and the water is wide
there is space for culture to grow

The Shenzhen Opera is a stage for civic humanism. Set in the Shenzhen Bay, the Opera is both a part of the city and yet apart from its urban context, a lost paradise rediscovered. This carefully sculpted sub-tropical archipelago is the prelude to a night at the Opera, and a finale at the end of the evening.  More than a sum of its parts, the emotional impact transcends that which music and drama can create on their own.

Bigger than itself, the Shenzhen Opera House is not just a building; it is an urban structure, a cultural quarter, and a landmark in the City – a global lighthouse of culture.


Architecture, Performance Space



Design Proposal


Shenzhen, China

Local Partner



Theatre Design & Acoustics: Theatre Projects
Structure: schlaich bergermann partner
Building Envelope: Front
Climate Engineering: Transsolar KlimaEngineering


Protected from the rain and shaded from the sun, the space is open to the sky. The mind and spirt can soar within this heightened cultural environment.

The form of the Opera celebrates the significant point in which the city meets the water. It marks the connection between the ocean, the land, and the mountains beyond.

This is more than a building or a complex, it is a vital public space within the city. There are no thresholds, only connections, East West along the shoreline and North South between performance and production.

The roof canopy gathers all connected spaces, forming one generous cultural environment. As with all genuine public spaces, this Opera is open to all – the young, the old, the citizen and the visitor. It is open all 24 hours of the day, all 7 days in the week and all 365 days of the year.

A canopy of shade during the day, the Opera is transformed into a magical lantern as evening approaches, beckoning and broadcasting, out across the water, up and down along the shoreline.