Building constructed between 1905 and 1908 in the district of Sant Pere, Barcelona, by Lluís Domènech i Muntaner
|Concert hall of the Palau de la Música Catalana - ECSA|
It won the City Council's prize for the best building in Barcelona in 1908. It houses the principal concert hall in Catalonia, oval in shape with glass walls. It has stalls, two floors and a capacity of over 2,000 people. It has a semicircular stage, 11 metres wide at the front and 7 metres deep, decorated with busts of Beethoven and Clavé, along with Wagnerian Valkyries and the 18 fairies, or Muses, holding musical instruments. Between the arches on the second floor, circled by ceramic laurel wreaths, are the names of famous musicians, and on the frontispiece of the same floor, those of the Catalans Brudieu, Fletxa, Vila, Terradelles and Clavé. Beneath the concert hall there are rehearsal rooms and other offices. It is one of the main examples of Modernist art in Catalonia and is internationally renowned. The sumptuous decorative artwork was carried out by the sculptors Miquel Blay (who created the work entitled Popular Song
, on the angle between the two façades), Eusebi Arnau and Pau Gargallo, the mosaic artists Mario Maragliano and Lluís Bru (author of the exterior mosaic symbolising the Orfeó Català), the glass worker Granell and the painter Miquel Massot, among others. It has a remarkable organ. It was declared a national monument in 1971, and was the subject of careful restoration work, which however was unable to repair all the damage, suffered by the building over the years. In 1983 a consortium was set up, comprising the Generalitat of Catalonia, the City Council, the Barcelona Provincial Government and , the building's owners, who took over the building's administration and undertook the refurbishment, according to the plans submitted by architects O. Tusquets and C. Diez. Between 1985 and 1989 important alterations were carried out with the aim of improving the building's safety, enlarging the stage, improving the acoustics and the comfort of artists and public alike, increasing and improving access, and other complementary services. It is the home of the Orfeó Català, with its library and archives. The Palau is the centre of musical life in Barcelona, with choral and symphonic concerts, chamber music and recitals of both international and Catalan classical music and popular song. Festivals of jazz and film music have also been held there, and plays and chamber operas have been put on. Meetings and festivals arranged by private companies have been held there and musical films have been shown. [Supplement 1] The Palau de la Música integrated consortium was established in 1983 comprising, along with the Orfeó Català, the Generalitat of Catalonia, the City Council and the Barcelona Provincial Government. The planned alterations to the Palau, dating from 1982, were begun in 1989 in rather controversial circumstances because of the reduction in the size of the stage and the changes in the acoustics. The Palau de la Música Chamber Orchestra was created in 1986.