Germany, Lübeck 

Music and Congress Hall


Competition 1990 – 1th Prize
Deasign Meinhard von Gerkan
Project managers Thomas Rinne, Wolfgang Haux
Project team Volkmar Sievers, Christian Weinmann, Daniela Kruth, Martina Klostermann, Bettina Groß, Christian Kreusler, Karl-Heinz Behrendt, Peter Kropp, Claudia Papanikolaou, Henning Wulf
Architect on site Ing. Büro Vlcek
Technical building equipment Heinze, Stockfisch, Grabis + Partner
Structural engineering Assmann Ingenieure
Acoustics Müller BBM, München
Art Peter Turpin
Client Hansestadt Lübeck, Hochbauamt
Construction period 1992–1994
Gross floor area 18,400 m²
Volume 112.600 m³



Gerhard Aumer

Klaus Frahm

The duality between public demand and festivity dictates the parameters of the design. The 120 metre long, 55 metre wide and 19 metre high building is not conceived to fit into the small scale atmosphere of the old town of Lübeck. It is much more a semantic, scale and aesthetic statement of the present day.

The orientation of the building with its public facilities is integrated into the urban structure. The northern building head with the inset cylinder of the multifunction foyer is formed like a large arcade and intentionally pushed into the pedestrian link which traverses the site. In the place of an architectural entrance square the building itself acts as a public building with its arcades and side staircases and walkways, the multi purpose foyer forming a public accessible court from the geometric shapes of circle and square.

The cylindrical glass hall has a total area of 1,400 m2 with a height of 10 metres. The materials chosen are simple: The polarity contrast between white enamelled aluminium and visible fixing stresses the technical nature of the construction and at the same time provides a design link to marine construction.

The building is based on a central axis, the concert hall has a similar clear rectangular plan with entrance corridors on all sides. The distribution of seating in stalls, stage rows, pits and double side aisles gives the ability to accommodate a chamber capacity of between 1,000 and 2,000 spectators by "omitting" various seating areas.

The walls of the chamber have a wood cladding fulfilling the high acoustic and design requirements. Areas of curved roofing, beding of the structural steelwork as well as acoustic panels in the stage area are all parts of the acoustic.